Rocket Mortgage Classic: Akshay Bhatia goes low with massive bogey free start

Akshay Bhatia brought his momentum from finishing runner-up at the Travelers Championship to Detroit for the Rocket Mortgage Classic.

He carded an 8-under bogey-free 64 at Detroit Golf Club on Thursday with six birdies and an eagle.

“I guess I missed one green today, so I got that up and down,” Bhatia said. “All in all, I hit it pretty nice with the irons and made some putts.”

Bhatia birdied two of his first four holes but would settle for seven straight pars. Then his putter got red hot for him.

In his final seven holes, the 22-year-old went 6-under, coming home in 30 shots. That included a birdie-eagle-birdie finish.

“Yeah, it’s always nice to finish like that,” he said. “This tournament’s always kind of a birdie-fest, so birdies and eagles help a lot. It’s nice to finish that way.”

Last week’s Travelers Championship was also a birdie fest. Prior to that, the U.S. Open and Memorial tournaments put players to quite the test.

For Bhatia, though, he appreciates both challenges.

“Played the U.S. Open, it was really hard. Then you come last week and this week, and you’re making a lot of birdies, so you feel like it’s pretty fun again,” Bhatia said. “I think a mix of it is really good, and I’m just happy we get to play an old-school golf course for once.”

The two-time PGA Tour winner enjoys classic golf courses like Detroit Golf Club. It fits his game well. As one of the better iron players on Tour, he likes the shot choices that come with playing this track.

“I feel like I can be creative like I normally am,” he said. “It’s also nice because these greens are pretty tricky. They have a lot of small slopes, but they’re soft, so you can still be aggressive towards a couple of these pins.”

Bhatia leads the Rocket Mortgage Classic by one shot after the first 18 holes. Taylor Montgomery and Michael Kim sit behind him at 7-under.

He plays Friday at 7:18 a.m. ET alongside Stephen Jaeger and Min Woo Lee.

Savannah Leigh Richardson is a golf staff writer for SB Nation’s Playing Through. For more golf coverage, follow us @_PlayingThrough on all major social platforms. You can also follow her on Twitter @SportsGirlSL and Instagram @savannah_leigh_sports.

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top