Athens: Indian golfer Arjun Atwal continued to struggle for form as he managed just one birdie against five bogeys in a card of four-over 75 in the first round of the USD 600,000 Stadion Classic. That card put him in danger of missing yet another cut.
Atwal, tied 129th, is having problems with his form this season and has missed cut in two of the four starts with a best of 45th. Bhavik Patel, an American of Indian origin, continued his good form and carded a flawless three-under 68 in the opening round to be tied seventh, alongside Daniel Chopra, whose father is Indian. Chopra carded an eventful 68 with six birdies and three bogeys.
Patel has had three top-20 finishes, including a best of sixth at Colombia Championships, while Chopra has had four top-20 finishes in five starts with a best of tied 13th at the Panama Claro Championships. Leading the field are local Brendon Todd, Argentine Rafael Echenique and Korea's Whee Kim. They all shot five-under 66 each to share the lead.
Kiwi Tim Wilkinson, Brenden Pappas of South Africa and Michael Putnam of Washington are tied at four-under 67. Seven more players, including former Bulldog Ryuji Imada, 2010 champion Martin Piller and leading money winner Edward Loar are in seventh place, two off the pace.