The Nabi Yousaf Memorial Open Golf Championship in progress at the par 72 Royal Palm Golf Course and enters the final stage with the top ranked player of Pakistan Shabbir Iqbal, occupying the top of the leaderboard after a superb round of six under par, 66 on Saturday, the second day of the championship.
Starting the day, just one stroke behind the leaders Hamza Amin and M.Safdar, this marvelous and remarkable one of many events of our national golf circuit, fired up his woods and irons and went round the 18 holes in gross 66 giving him an aggregate of 134 for two rounds, ten under par and helped him to acquire mental and physical control of the Nabi Yousaf Golf Championship. In the course of the round on Saturday, Shabbir had birdies on holes 1,3,6,7,10,12,14 and 18,(eight in all), eight pars and surprisingly two minor faults also crept in resulting in a stroke loss each on holes 15 and 17.
“Although I lost strokes on two holes due to missed putts, overall I had a phenomenal round today thanks to the excellent state of the fairways and the smooth ball movement on the greens” said Shabbir and in that moment of glory he further complimented the Royal Palm Golf Course management team for a well maintained Royal Palm Golf Course.
Out of the other seasoned professionals in pursuit of glory and some value loaded cash prizes, the nearest ones hoping to fight it out on the final day on Sunday are Muhammed Safdar of Gujranwala and Zubair Satti of Islamabad. These two champions looked gutsy and gallant during the second round yesterday but while Shabbir was sensational in his application of golfing skills, Safdar and Zubair were just a little less resolute and while they appear as the nearest challengers of Shabbir in the final lap on Sunday, the advantage is tilted a bit too much in Shabbir’s favour. Safdar and Zubair are bracketed at a two days aggregate score of 140, four under par and are six strokes behind the leader. And while Safdar is still hoping for a determined effort on the final day,Zubair is eager to be content with getting hold of the runners up slot.
Other competing professionals for the final line up are M.Munir (islamabad) 142, Arif Ali (Gymkhana) 142, Shafiq Masih (Gymkhana) 142, and Hamza Amin (Islamabad) 142. This means that we have four contenders bracketed at a two rounds aggregate score of 142, two under par. At the score of 144 are Rehmatulla (DHA) and Raheel Karim (Gujranwala).
Out of the 86 professionals competing in this tournament, 46 could not qualify for the final day and only 40 will be fighting it out for final honors.