Niall Kearney needed hospital treatment for a nasty bout of food poisoning which forced him to withdraw before the second round of the inaugural Gujarat Kensville Challenge in India.

The Royal Dublin player, who was tied for 23rd place on one-over par following an opening 73 at Kensville Golf Club in Ahmedabad in northeastern India, was taken to hospital at around 7am local time and placed on a drip and antibiotics.

“Shocker,” Kearney said from India. “I don’t feel too bad now. I’ll be on antibiotics for a few days and I should be okay. I have no idea what caused it. It’s just unfortunate.”

The 22-year old Dubliner had flown to India from Thailand, where his parents are on holiday, and planned to fly back to join them in the early hours of Saturday morning, Irish time.

Kearney must now wait until March to continue his Challenge Tour career when Europe’s second tier circuit resumes with events in Colombia and Kenya.

A Walker Cup player in 2009, he earned his Challenge Tour card at the Qualifying School that autumn but played only a handful of events after an operation to stabilise a shoulder injury forced him to miss six months of last season.

He made a heroic comeback late last year by cruising into the final stage of the Q-School. But while he failed to earn his European Tour card at PGA Catalunya, he played all six rounds to ensure full playing rights on the Challenge Tour in 2011.

India’s Gaganjeet Bhullar fired a second successive 70 to join Austria’s Florian Praegant at the top of the leaderboard on four under par.

Overnight leader Siddikur Rahman of Bangladesh slipped to third place on three under with local favourite Abhishek Jha and Englishmen, Matt Baldwin, Daniel Denison and Matt Ford a shot further back.