In the second set of matches, Lahiri will meet Justin Rose, while Marc Leishman meets Palmer. In the other match in the Group, Leishman stunned Rose 2&1 to throw the Group wide open.

Lahiri, ranked No. 35 in the world, a seven-time winner on Asian Tour and twice on European Tour, started and closed well and had six birdies against no bogeys in his 16 holes to bolster his matchplay credentials.

"I played really good," said Lahiri. "It was a really solid round. I don't think Ryan played poorly, either, I think it was a really good match. It was massive for me to birdie 13, and then chip in on 14 to keep myself three ahead,” he added.

The other two players in the Group are Justin Rose, Masters runner-up and winner of the PGA Tour event in New Orleans, and World No. 60, Marc Leishman. Interestingly, Leishman stunned Rose 2&1 to throw the group wide open.

As per the new format the 64 players have been divided into 16 groups of four each. Each players plays the other three and the winner of the group proceeds to Last 16.

Lahiri was happy with the fact that he did not bogey. He said, "I'm pretty happy I didn't make a bogey today: that's a pretty good sign for me and putting better, feeling good."

Talking of Match Play, Lahiri added, "I think I do pretty well in match play. I was just talking to my caddie about it and there's no letting up. You have to kind of be in the zone right through. And you can't have a plateau in your focus, you've got to be really intense. And I think I like playing golf that way. So hopefully I can keep that up."

Lahiri, who has won twice in co-sanctioned events in Maybank Malaysian Open and Hero Indian Open, won the first hole with a birdie on the Par-5 and increased his lead with another birdie on fourth.

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