Free Press Journal

Blue Monster course in Doral gives Lahiri a rough welcome


Doral (Florida): Anirban Lahiri, even par after the first 10 holes in the first round, crumbled over the last eight at the Blue Monster in Doral at the WGC-Cadillac Championship on Thursday. Playing his first event at Doral, Lahiri, the World No. 34, finished with eight-over 80, which curiously was the same as Asia’s other representative in the event, Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand. The Asian duo was tied 71st at the US$9.25 million tournament.

David Lipsky, the reigning Asian Tour Order of Merit champion, battled to a two-over-par 74 for a share of 39th place. Long-hitting American J B Holmes was the leader at 10-under-62. While Holmes ran away from the field with eight birdies and an eagle, Ryan Moore six-under 66 despite a closing double bogey and Rickie Fowler shot 68, the same as Dustin Johnson and Alexander Levy.

Lahiri, who has been receiving a lot of attention in Doral following his rise in world rankings, also went to attend his first NBA game later in the evening. He started from the tenth had a birdie on the par-5 12th but dropped bogeys on the 14th and 17th as he struggled with his approach shots. A birdie on the first brought him to even par alongside some of the well-established stars.

But thereafter he slipped into an abyss of errors as he had a bogey and double-bogey on the next two holes. He found the water with his tee shot on the third and had to take a penalty drop. Lahiri then dropped five shots on the last four holes including a double-bogey on the closing ninth to end up with an 80.

A disappointed Lahiri said, “It was tough out there, but I was fine for the first stretch. Then things did not go my way. I have to pick myself up for the next 3 days.”