Siddikur rolls back the years
Siddikur Rahman shot one of the lowest rounds of his 18-year professional career on Saturday, an eight-under-par 64, to share the third-round lead at the International Series Thailand with India's Chikkarangappa S., Zach Murray from Australia and Thailand's Jazz Janewattananond.
Chikkarangappa carded 67, Murray 68 and Jazz 69 at Black Mountain Golf Club in Hua Hin.
They lead the Asian Tour event on 15 under by one shot from Koreans Yongjun Bae (65), Mingyu Cho (66), and Jaewoong Eom (68), Micah Lauren Shin (67) from the United States, and Japan's Yosuke Asaji (68).
With 28 players within three shots of the lead the tournament is wide open and the stage set for a gripping final day, in what is the third International Series event of the season.
Bangladesh's golfing idol Siddikur looked like he was going to shoot an even lower round as six birdies on the front saw him turn in six-under-par 30 and when birdies followed on 12, 13 and 15 the course record of 62, set by American Sihwan Kim last year, looked within reach.
However, the 38-year-old made his only bogey of the day on 17.
"It was a wonderful day, I was so sound," said Siddikur.
"My hitting was excellent and at the same time my putting was too good. So, all over it was a wonderful round for me, nine birdies and one bogey, the last two holes a little bit unlucky, but, again, I'm happy for today."
Siddikur is a two-time winner on the Asian Tour but the most recent of those is the 2013 Hero Indian Open. He has been relatively subdued over the past four years but showed glimpses of his former self by finishing tied third in the Mercuries Taiwan Masters and joint fourth in the Bangladesh Open last year.
Siddikur is one of the shortest hitters on Tour, not suited to Black Mountain, which favours the long ball players, but the Bangladeshi countered that with a brilliant short stick display.
He said: "I especially enjoyed my putting today because the first two days I couldn't putt that good. The first day my hitting was excellent, but I couldn't putt honestly. But today, yeah, no complaints on the putting and my hitting was excellent too."