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Olympics: Golfer Aditi Ashok cards 4-under 67, ends Day 1 tied second

India’s top woman golfer Aditi Ashok made a fine start to her Tokyo Olympics campaign, ending Day 1 tied-second with a score of four-under 67 at the Kasumigaseki Country Club here on Wednesday.

The 23-year-old Aditi and the reigning women’s PGA Championships winner, American Nelly Korda, shot identical scores in perfect conditions to trail Sweden’s Madelene Sagstrom by a stroke.

The 28-year-old Madelene, who notched her maiden LPGA Tour win at Gainbridge in Boca Raton, Florida early last year, had a superb five-under 66.

Aditi, who qualified for Tokyo Games in 45th place and is competing in her second Olympics after 2016 Rio, briefly led the round before a bogey on the final green saw her slip.

The Indian had also led in the women’s golf event for a short while during the second round at the Rio Games, but had eventually finished 41st.

Aditi, ranked No. 200 in the world, had an error-free round in Tokyo until the 17th green, carding five birdies in all.

“I think I played better than I expected today because I had a lot of hybrids into the greens, so I didn’t really expect to be like 5-under through 17,” Aditi told “But, yeah, I kind of holed some putts and holed important par putts as well which kept the momentum. So, yeah, it was a good day.”

Aditi fumbled on a tricky final hole, which was set in between a bunker on the front and a water hazard right behind. She over-hit the second shot on the fairway, thus needing an extra shot for the putt on the par-four 18th.

The other Indian in the fray, 20-year-old Olympic debutant Diksha Dagar, had five bogeys and was placed tied-56 with a score of five-over 76.

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