Amardeep posts 67 to build two-shot lead at Delhi-NCR Open 2022
Noida, Apr 20 (Golf News) Amardeep Malik, playing on his home course, shot a brilliant five-under 67 to build a two-shot lead at 12-under 132 during the halfway stage of the Delhi-NCR Open 2022 golf tournament here on Wednesday.
Bengaluru's Mari Muthu R shot the day's lowest score of eight-under 64 to be placed tied second at 10-under 134 along with Manu Gandas (69) of Gurugram at the Rs 40 lakh event, presented by Prometheus School and played at the Noida Golf Course.
The cut went at one-over 145. Fifty-one professionals made the cut.
Noida-based Amardeep (65-67) began the day with a birdie on the first and then added three more birdies on the sixth, eighth and ninth for a strong front-nine. He landed his approach within two feet on the ninth.
The 36-year-old Amardeep, the overnight joint leader, had a turbulent start to the back-nine stumbling with bogeys on the 11th and 13th where he missed up and downs. He made a comeback with an eagle on the par-4 15th where he holed his second shot from the rough from a distance of 95 yards. He picked up another shot on the 16th with a 25-feet conversion to close the day with a two-shot lead. Muthu (70-64), lying tied 15th and five off the lead after round one, jumped 13 places to joint second, courtesy his 64 that featured 10 birdies and two bogeys.
Manu (65-69), a two-time winner on the PGTI, dropped out of the overnight joint lead with an eventful round that featured an eagle, four birdies, a bogey and a double-bogey.
He landed his second shot within a couple of feet of the pin for eagle on the par-5 17th. He also chipped-in for birdie on the fourth. Manu was five-under on the four par-5s for the second day in succession. Chandigarh's Abhijit Singh Chadha (69) occupies fourth place at nine-under 135 while Bangladesh's Md Zamal Hossain Mollah (70) is a further shot back in fifth position.
Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (72) of Chandigarh, currently ranked second on the PGTI Order of Merit, is in tied 43rd place at one-over 145.
Also Read : Amardeep and Manu take joint first round lead at Delhi-NCR Open 2022
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Amardeep and Manu take joint first round lead at Delhi-NCR Open 2022
Noida, Apr 19 (Golf News) Amardeep Malik and Manu Gandas shot similar seven-under 65s to take joint lead in round one of the Delhi-NCR Open 2022 here on Tuesday.
Bangladesh's Md Zamal Hossain Mollah, Chandigarh-based Abhijit Singh Chadha and Shivendra Singh Sisodia of Gurugram were tied third with matching scores of 66.
Noida's Amardeep was off to a flying start at his home course as he scored four birdies in his first six holes, hitting his irons well and rolling in the putts. He then added another birdie and bogey on the back-nine before sinking an eagle on the first hole from four feet.
The 36-year-old Amardeep's longest putt of the day was the 15-feet birdie conversion on the second. His progress slowed down thereafter as his putter went cold on the front-nine and he missed some short putts at the Rs. 40 lakh event.
"I was lucky that I made a few putts in the start that got my round going. The putter then went cold on the front-nine but I hit it well all day and am very pleased to have posted my lowest score this season," Amardeep, a two-time winner on the PGTI, said.
Gurugram's Manu began his tournament with an eagle on the first where he had a lucky break after his drive rebounded off a tree back onto the fairway.
Manu's second shot landed a couple of feet from the flag to give him the ideal start. The two-time winner on the PGTI thereafter added six more birdies and a bogey to his card as he went five-under on the four par-5s.
"I feel I had good control on my ball-flight today and struck my woods and irons well. I had one lucky break on the first hole and I managed to capitalize on that. That kept the momentum going for me and there was no silly mistake thereafter," Manu said.
Among the pre-tournament favourites, Yuvraj Singh Sandhu began with a 73 to be tied 48th while defending champion Udayan Mane signed for a 74 to be tied 65th.
Also Read : Rashid, Joshi among top names for Delhi-NCR Open Golf C'ship
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Rashid, Joshi among top names for Delhi-NCR Open Golf C'ship
New Delhi, Apr 18 (Golf News) Former Asian Tour winners Rashid Khan and Khalin Joshi will headline a stellar field when the Delhi-NCR Open Golf Championship 2022 gets underway at the Noida Golf Course here on Tuesday.
The fourth edition of the tournament will be jointly staged by the TATA Steel Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) and Prometheus School, Noida.
The tournament, the ninth event of the 2022 TATA Steel PGTI season, carries a prize purse of Rs. 40 lakh.
The Pro-Am event will be staged on April 23. The tournament is set to feature some of the top Indian professionals such as Tokyo Olympian and defending champion Udayan Mane, Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (Ranked No. 2 on the PGTI Order of Merit), two-time winner on Asian Tour winner Rashid and Panasonic winner Joshi, as well as former champion Honey Baisoya.
The other prominent names include Asian Tour regular Aman Raj, Karandeep Kochhar, Manu Gandas and Abhijit Singh Chadha.
The other leading golfers from the Delhi-NCR region participating in the event include Shamim Khan, Abhinav Lohan, Kartik Sharma, Sachin Baisoya and Amardeep Malik, to name a few.
The foreign challenge will be led by Sri Lankans Mithun Perera, N Thangaraja and Anura Rohana, Bangladeshis Md Zamal Hossain Mollah, Badal Hossain, Md Akbar Hossain, Md Sayum, Md Muaj and Md Somrat Sikdar as well as Nepal’s Sukra Bahadur Rai.
"We're excited to stage the fourth edition of the Prometheus School presents Delhi-NCR Open, an event which has emerged as one of the mainstays on the TATA Steel PGTI in recent years," Uttam Singh Mundy, CEO, PGTI, said in a release.
"The depth in the field at the tournament provides a perfect setting for the culmination of a strong first half of the 2022 PGTI season which has witnessed nine back-to-back events."
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Yuvraj's flawless 65 takes him to joint lead at PGTI Players Championship
Chandigarh, Apr 14 (Golf News) Yuvraj Singh Sandhu registered the lowest score of the day, an error-free seven-under 65, to move up five spots into the joint lead after the third round of Rs 50 lakh TATA Steel PGTI Players Championship golf tournament here on Thursday.
Chandigarh-lad Yuvraj (70-67-65) shared the top spot at 14-under 202 with Bangladesh's Md Zamal Hossain Mollah (67-66-69), who produced a three-under 69 on Thursday, his second straight bogey-free round, to gain one spot on the leaderboard.
Gurugram-based duo of Kartik Sharma (67-69-67) and Shivendra Singh Sisodia (68-63-72) lurked one shot behind in tied third place at 13-under 203.
Kartik and Shivendra kept themselves in contention with third round scores of 67 and 72 respectively.
Angad Cheema returned a 70 to occupy fifth place at 10-under 206.
Yuvraj, currently second on the PGTI Order of Merit with a win and three other top-10s in 2022 so far, had a cold start as he missed a short putt for a birdie on the second.
However, he finally made breakthroughs on the fourth and ninth where he rolled in birdies from five feet.
The 25-year-old, who has been in red-hot form since the latter half of 2021, then revved up the engine on the back-nine where he collected five more birdies.
Yuvraj produced a great second shot from the rough to set up a five-feet birdie conversion on the 12th and then nearly holed-out his approach on the 15th on a day the pin positions were the toughest even as there was lesser wind.
The two other Chandigarh golfers in the top-10 were defending champion Karandeep Kochhar (68) and Ranjit Singh (69). Karandeep was placed seventh at eight-under 208 while Ranjit was in eighth position at seven-under 209.
Chandigarh's Abhijit Singh Chadha, who was overnight third, dropped to tied 15th at four-under 212 following a 77 in round three.
Udayan Mane (74) was also in tied 15th place.
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Udayan Mane, Khalin Joshi, Kochhar to headline TATA Steel PGTI Players Championship
Chandigarh, Apr 11 (Golf News) Indian golfers Udayan Mane, Khalin Joshi and defending champion Karandeep Kochhar will headline the The TATA Steel PGTI Players Championship, starting here on Tuesday.
The tournament, which will be played at the Chandigarh Golf Club from April 12 to 15, carries a prize purse of Rs 50 lakh.
The Pro-Am event will be staged on April 16.
The field of 126 players includes 123 professionals and three amateurs.
The leading Indian professionals in the fray apart from the the trio, include Honey Baisoya, Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Kshitij Naveed Kaul, Manu Gandas, Abhijit Singh Chadha, Akshay Sharma and Aadil Bedi.
Local lad Sandhu, currently ranked second on the TATA Steel PGTI Order of Merit, is the highest-ranked player on the Order of Merit among those participating in the event.
The foreign challenge will be led by Sri Lankans Mithun Perera, N Thangaraja and Anura Rohana, Bangladesh's Md Zamal Hossain Mollah, Badal Hossain, Md Akbar Hossain, Md Sayum, Md Muaj and Md Somrat Sikdar as well as Nepal's Sukra Bahadur Rai.
"We thank Chandigarh Golf Club for their support in helping establish the TATA Steel PGTI Players Championship as a regular feature in Chandigarh," said Uttam Singh Mundy, CEO, PGTI "We also thank Gujarat Tourism for coming on board as the Associate Partner for the event. The Chandigarh Golf Club has always produced fascinating finishes. We now look forward to another intense week of competition."
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Aadil Bedi, Ankur Chadha and Hitaashee Bakshi's team crowned winners of Mixed Pro Challenge
Gurugram, Apr 6 (Golf News) The team of Aadil Bedi, Ankur Chadha and Hitaashee Bakshi was crowned winners of the inaugural Ballantine's Golf Championship – Mixed Pro Challenge at the DLF Golf and Country Club here on Wednesday.
Aadil, Ankur and Hitaashee's (131-138) team, leaders by two shots after round one, drove home the advantage with a score of six-under 138 in the second and final round to end up with a gross score of 19-under 269 for the week to lift the trophy.
They took home the winning cheque worth Rs. 7 lakh at the 36-hole tournament, a first-of-its-kind men's and women's mixed event played in India.
Seventeen-year-old Hitaashee, playing at her home course, was the best performer for her team for the second day in succession as she followed up her 66 in round one with a 69 in round two.
The team consisting of Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Sunit Chowrasia and Gaurika Bishnoi (133-138) finished runners-up with a gross score of 17-under 271 after firing a six-under 138 in round two.
It was a Team Strokeplay event with 18 sides participating. The total prize purse was Rs. 30 lakh. All players were to hole out on every hole. The two best scores out of three on each hole (hole by hole) were counted towards the team score.
Hitaashee, who is in the middle of her 12th class board exams, mixed six birdies with a bogey and a double-bogey on the final day. Hitaashee, who has won three events on the WGAI since turning professional in December last year, made two early birdies, sinking a 12-footer on the third and tapping-in on the fifth.
It was Aadil Bedi who gave the early breakthroughs to the winning team as he scored a chip-in birdie on the first hole followed by two more birdies on the third and fourth. Aadil, a winner on the PGTI, then conceded five bogeys to end up with a 74 in round two.
Ankur Chadha, who posted a score of 69 on day one, signed for a 78 on day two. Besides Hitaashee's 66, Ankur's 69 in round one was also crucial to the team's solid start on Tuesday.
The team of Sunit Chowrasia (74), Gaurika Bishnoi (76) and Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (81) held on to their overnight second position.
Honey Baisoya, also playing at his home course, shot the day's best individual score of 68 that played a vital role in his team finishing tied third at 16-under 272. Honey's team-mates were Mani Ram and Jahanvi Bakshi who is Hitaashee’s elder sister.
The other team that finished tied third comprised Khalin Joshi, Kartik Sharma and Oviya Reddi.
Also Read : Hitaashee, Ankur, Aadil’s team leads on day one of Golf Championship
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Hitaashee, Ankur, Aadil’s team leads on day one of Golf Championship
Gurugram, Apr 5 (Golf News) Hitaashee Bakshi, Ankur Chadha and Aadil Bedi fired a total of 13-under 131 to take the lead on day one of the Golf Championship –- Mixed Pro Challenge -- here on Tuesday.
The first round of the 36-hole tournament, a first-of-its-kind men’s and women’s mixed event being played in India, saw 17-year-old Hitaashee make a major contribution to her team total as she fired the day’s best score of six-under 66 at her home course.
The team comprising Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Sunit Chowrasia and Gaurika Bishnoi were in second place with a gross score of 11-under 133.
Third place was occupied by the trio of Pranavi Urs, Karandeep Kochhar and Chiragh Kumar, who had a gross score of 10-under 134.
The tournament is a Team Strokeplay event where all players must hole out on every hole. The two best scores out of three on each hole (hole by hole) would count towards the team score.
Hitaashee, who is in the middle of her class 12th Board Exams, had a horrid start as she bogeyed the first two holes after pulling her approach shots on both occasions. She then began turning it around, picking up four birdies on the front-nine thereafter including three on the trot from the seventh through the ninth.
Hitaashee then added four more birdies to her card on the back-nine courtesy three conversions from a range of eight to 12 feet and a tap-in on the 17th. She also got out of trouble on the 12th with a good par-save.
Yuvraj and Sunit had the two best scores in their team as both shot rounds of 73 to help their team end the day in second place.
Mysuru-based 18-year-old Pranavi, one of only two players to shoot an error-free round on day one, was instrumental in her team being placed third.
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Kemmer wins Gurugram Challenge, Arjun Bhati finishes third
Nuh (Haryana), Apr 1 (Golf News) American Dodge Kemmer fired a brilliant last round of six-under 66 to win the Gurugram Challenge by three shots ahead of Thailand's Chanat Sakulpolaphaisan (68), here on Friday.
Seventeen-year-old rookie Arjun Bhati, playing only his second event after turning professional, was the best-placed Indian with a third place finish. He aggregated 18-under 270 at the PGTI event.
Bhati's final round of 66, along with winner Kemmer's round, was the day's joint best score. India's Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (67) and England's Joshua Grenville-Wood (68) also took a share of fourth place. Indonesia's Rory Hie, the leader for the first three days, carded a 73 on Friday to finish tied fourth at 17-under 271.
Kemmer (67-66-66-66), shot a third straight 66, a bogey-free round, to come home the winner on the most windy day of the week. Asian Tour regular Kemmer's success ratified his decision to stay on for the event after last week’s The DGC Open presented by Mastercard, where he finished joint 49th.
"It was a great decision. I like being in India, it was an easy choice. Obviously, a win is always good and good for the confidence and gets me in a good place on the ADT list in case I need that to stay on the Asian Tour next year," he said.
Chanat Sakulpolaphaisan (66-67-67-68), who was overnight tied third, shot a flawless 68 in round four to rise one spot to second place. He chipped-in for birdie on the fifth.
Bhati (70-66-68-66) mixed seven birdies with a bogey during his 66. He began his day with a 30-feet birdie conversion on the first hole that set up the round for him.
"I'm very proud of my effort this week. Scoring 18-under is a huge confidence-booster for me. It's a dream start to my career. I putted really well this week," Bhati said.
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Yuvraj registers lowest total at Tollygunge, climbs to second on the PGTI Order of Merit
Kolkata, Mar 18 (Golf News) Yuvraj Singh Sandhu produced a gritty final round score of four-under 66 to record the lowest winning total of 21-under 259 in the TATA Steel PGTI Players Championship 2022 here on Friday.
Twenty-five-year-old Yuvraj made a final flourish with an eagle-two on the 16th and a 35-feet birdie conversion on the 18th that helped him to prevail in a thriller and earn his second title.
Chandigarh-based Yuvraj (67-65-61-66), the third round leader by three shots, was given a scare by Kolkata’s Viraj Madappa (64-70-62-64), who shot the day's joint best score of 64, before he finished runner-up at 20-under 260.
Yuvraj's victory, his second in four months, lifted him from 23rd to second place in the PGTI Order of Merit after he picked up the winning cheque worth Rs 8,08,250.
Rahil Gangjee, originally from Kolkata now based in Bengaluru, secured the third place at 17-under 263 following his final round of 66.
Twenty-four-year-old Viraj Madappa, who was overnight tied second and three off the lead, had turned the tables early on Friday with six birdies over the first 13 holes with all aspects of his game coming together.
At that stage, Madappa, a winner on the Asian Tour, enjoyed a three-shot lead over Yuvraj.
After Viraj dropped a bogey on the 14th and both he and Yuvraj picked up birdies on the 15th, there was a momentum shift back in favour of Yuvraj.
Yuvraj came up with an incredible approach shot from 99 yards on the 16th that found the hole for an eagle and brought him on level terms with Madappa.
Yuvraj finally nailed an unbelievable 27-feet birdie putt on the 18th to get over the line and break the record for the lowest winning total at Tollygunge Club previously standing at 18-under 262, which was jointly held by Md Zamal Hossain Mollah (Bengal Open 2019) and Anirban Lahiri (PGTI Players Championship 2011).
Rashid Khan and Shamim Khan were tied fourth at 16-under 264.
Kolkata's SSP Chawrasia finished tied ninth at 11-under 269, while Indian golf legend Jeev Milkha Singh ended tied 17th at eight-under 272.
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TATA Steel PGTI tees off 2022 season on Tuesday with Gujarat Open C'ship
Ahmedabad, Feb 21 (Golf News) The TATA Steel Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) begins the 2022 season from Tuesday with the second edition of the Gujarat Open Golf Championship here.
The tournament carrying a prize purse of Rs 40 lakh will be played at the Kalhaar Blues & Greens Golf Club.
The tournament comprises a field of 126 players -- 123 professionals and three amateurs.
The event will feature some of the top Indian professionals such as Olympian and 2021 PGTI Order of Merit champion Udayan Mane, Karandeep Kochhar, Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, among others.
The foreign challenge will be led by Sri Lanka's Mithun Perera, Australia's Kunal Bhasin, Nepal's Sukra Bahadur Rai and the Bangladeshi quintet of Md Akbar Hossain, Md Muaj, Md Somrat Sikdar, Md Sayum and Md Shakhawat Hossain Sohel.
The local challenge will be spearheaded by professionals Varun Parikh, Anshul Patel, Jay Pandya, Shravan Desai and Arshpreet Thind. The Gujarat-based amateurs in the field are Rajiv Vasa, Dhruv Suri and Rachit Mankoti.
One of the tournament favourites, Mane said, "I'm excited about playing the Gujarat Open 2022 as it's always a treat to play in Kalhaar, one of the top championship venues in India. I've also won at this venue in the past and that adds to my confidence this week.
"It's a course where the approach shots demand a lot of precision. I would like to carry forward the momentum from last year's Order of Merit win."
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TATA Steel Group and PGTI to host TATA Steel Tour Championship 2021
Jamshedpur, Dec 13 (Golf News) The TATA Steel Group and PGTI will be hosting the TATA Steel Tour Championship at the Beldih and Golmuri golf courses here from December 16 to December 19.
The event offers a handsome prize purse of Rs 1.5 crore and will feature an elite field of 74 professionals.
The championship is the season-ending event of the 2020-2021 PGTI calendar. The tournament is a 72-hole stroke-play championship and there will be no cut applied.
There is guaranteed prize money for all participants. The Pro-Am event preceding the tournament will be played on Tuesday.
According to the format of the event for all four rounds, half the field will play their first nine holes at Golmuri and second nine at Beldih while the other half will play their first nine at Golmuri and second nine at Beldih.
From round two onwards, the leading/front half of the leaderboard (leading groups as per the scores) will play their first nine holes at Golmuri and second nine at Beldih. The prize presentation ceremony on Sunday will be at Beldih.
The tournament will feature some of the biggest names in Indian golf such as defending champion Gaganjeet Bhullar (10 international wins), Jyoti Randhawa (9 international wins), Olympian SSP Chawrasia (6 international wins), Shubhankar Sharma (2 international wins) and Olympian Udayan Mane (2019 champion).
The field will also feature the top-60 from the PGTI Order of Merit with the prominent names being PGTI Order of Merit leader Karandeep Kochhar, Rashid Khan, Khalin Joshi, Viraj Madappa, Chikkarangappa S, Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Aman Raj, Veer Ahlawat and Manu Gandas, to name a few.
Two-time European Tour winner and former Asia No. 1 Shubhankar Sharma returns to play in Jamshedpur after five years.
Shubhankar, a European Tour regular, last played in Jamshedpur at the 15th TATA Open 2016, an event he went on to win. Sharma will also be playing a PGTI event for the first time since February 2020.
The tournament will decide the PGTI Order of Merit champion for the 2020-2021 season.
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Chadha cruises to comfortable six-shot win
Pune, Dec 4 (Golf news) Chandigarh's Abhijit Singh Chadha cruised to a comfortable six-shot win at the Pune Open Golf Championship after shooting a solid last round of four-under 66, his third consecutive bogey-free round, here on Saturday.
The 30-year-old Chadha (63-65-64-66), leading by one shot at the end of round three, sank four birdies on Saturday, to end up with an impressive winning total of 21-under 258.
Chadha negotiated the tough conditions to perfection through the week as he went error-free for 71 holes after his bogey on the first hole in round one.
He thus lifted his third title which also accounted for his first win in six years. He took home a prize money cheque worth Rs. 6,46,600 to move up nine spots to 15th place in the PGTI Order of Merit.
Rookie Kartik Sharma (66-60-67-71) of Gurugram, who was placed second, one shot off the lead, after round three, returned a one-over 71 on the final day to finish second at 15-under 264.
Kartik's round featured a birdie and two bogeys as the putts didn't roll in for him. Nonetheless, it was a career-best finish for the left-hander who moved up seven spots to 18th place in PGTI's merit list. It was also Kartik’s fifth top-10 this season.
Kolkata's Sunit Chowrasia shot the day’s best score for the second day in succession to finish third at 13-under 266.
In round four, Chowrasia’s 65 was matched by Chandigarh's Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (tied eighth at seven-under 272), Bengaluru’s C Muniyappa (tied 17th at three-under 276) and Gurugram’s Ankur Chadha (tied 26th at two-over 281).
The par for the course was 70 during round four. Play commenced on time on Saturday. The day witnessed a light drizzle in the afternoon towards the closing stages of the tournament.
Chadha, a silver medallist from the 2010 Asian Games, dominated the proceedings from the outset in round four as he began pulling away from the rest of the field early on.
After nearest the challenger Kartik missed the green and the subsequent chip-putts to drop bogeys on the second and third, Chadha further capitalized with 10-feet birdie conversions on the fifth and sixth to stretch his lead to a massive five shots.
Thereafter, Kartik could not convert his opportunities on the greens and Chadha maintained his lead before further extending it with birdies on the 16th and 17th making a mammoth 66-feet putt on the latter.
Chadha finally emerged triumphant by six shots after Sharma picked up a birdie on the 18th hole.
Bengaluru's Syed Saqib Ahmed (69) took fourth place at nine-under 270.
Among the Pune golfers, amateur Rohan Dhole Patil (75-67-68-70) had the best finish as he secured tied 24th place at one-over 280. Rohan also took the trophy for the best performing amateur.
Delhi-based amateur Krishnav Nikhil Chopraa, son of former cricketer Nikhil Chopra, struck a hole-in-one on the 16th hole during his final round of 67. He claimed tied 26th place at two-over 281.
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Kshitij, Mukesh, Shamim to compete at Pune Open
Pune, Nov 30 (Golf News) Defending champion Kshitij Naveed Kaul, alongwith domestic stalwarts such as Mukesh Kumar and Shamim Khan, will vie for top honours when the the fifth edition of the Pune Open Golf Championship tees off here on Wednesday.
The Rs 40 lakh event, which will be staged at the Poona Club Golf Course, is the last full-field event of the TATA Steel PGTI's 2020-2021 season before the season-ending TATA Steel Tour Championship.
The tournament will feature leading Indian names such as Manu Gandas, Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Om Prakash Chouhan, Akshay Sharma and Amardeep Malik, to name a few.
The international challenge will be led by Sri Lankans Mithun Perera, Anura Rohana, N Thangaraja and K Prabagaran, Bangladeshis Md Zamal Hossain Mollah and Badal Hossain as well as Australian Kunal Bhasin.
The host city will be represented by Gurki Shergill (a former winner on PGTI), Pravin Pathare, Sameer M Shaikh, Rajiv Datar, Sagar Raghuvanshi, Jaideep Patwardhan, Sunil Baburao Galfade and Rajaram Baburao Shinde as well as amateur Rohan Dhole Patil.
"This year there is the added excitement of the Pune Open being the final PGTI event before the season-ending Tour Championship later next month," PGTI CEO Uttam Singh Mundy said.
"With spots in the top-60 for the Tour Championship up for grabs, one can expect intense competition as the players would be vying for those spots and their exemption for next year."
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Kshitij take one-shot lead into final round at ICC RCGC Golf C'ships
Kolkata, Nov 27 (Golf news) Delhi's Kshitij Naveed Kaul produced a dogged two-under 70 to carry a slender one-shot lead into the final round of the ICC RCGC Open Golf Championship here on Saturday.
Angad Cheema and Ankur Chadha were a close second and third respectively after the third round of the tournament.
However, there was daylight between the top three and the rest of the field at the Rs. 40 lakh event being played at the Royal Calcutta Golf Club (RCGC) here.
The 20-year-old Kshitij, the halfway leader by two shots, managed to keep his nose ahead in round three as he fired three birdies and a bogey that took his total to 12-under 204.
Panchkula's Angad (68-68-69), lying overnight second, narrowed the gap between himself and the leader to just one shot after his round of 69 that featured four birdies and a bogey.
Gurugram's Ankur (68-69-69), who was third at the halfway stage, too carded a 69 punctuated by five birdies and two bogeys, to keep himself in the fray.
While Kshitij and Angad are in search of their second title, Ankur will look to take a shot at his maiden title.
Sunit Chowrasia (71) was the highest-placed Kolkata golfer in tied fourth at six-under 210. Last week's winner Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (72) of Chandigarh joined Sunit in tied fourth position.
Greater Noida-based Arjun Sharma returned the day's best card of 67 to be placed 15th at two-under 214.
Defending champion Mithun Perera (73-73-74) of Sri Lanka was tied 32nd at four-over 220.
Also Read : Kshitij Naveed Kaul climbs to top with sublime 65
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Kshitij Naveed Kaul climbs to top with sublime 65
Kolkata, Nov 26 (Golf News) Delhi's Kshitij Naveed Kaul climbed to the top with a sublime seven-under 65 in round two of the ICC RCGC Open Golf Championship here on Friday.
The 20-year-old Kshitij (69-65), a winner on the PGTI in 2019, struck the tournament's best round so far featuring nine birdies and two bogeys to take his 36-hole tally to 10-under 134 for a two-shot lead. Kaul made a gain of five spots from his overnight tied sixth.
Panchkula-based Angad Cheema (68-68), part of the five-way lead on day one, shot a second consecutive 68 to occupy second place at eight-under 136.
Gurugram's Ankur Chadha (68-69), also a joint leader in round one, ended day two in third place at seven-under 137 following his 69 on Friday.
The cut came down at three-over 147. Fifty-three professionals made the cut.
Kshitij Naveed Kaul, currently 19th on the PGTI Order of Merit and fresh from top-20s in his last three events, had birdies at regular intervals on the front-nine picking up shots on the second, fourth, seventh and ninth as a result of conversions from a range of seven to 15 feet.
Kaul then slowed down after a couple of erratic tee shots resulted in bogeys for him on the 10th and 11th. Kshitij then came roaring back with a birdie on the 12th followed by four in succession from the 15th to the 18th. He narrowly missed eagles on the 15th and 17th with his approach from 160 yards landing within inches of the pin on the latter.
The promising young talent signed off in style with a 20-feet birdie conversion on the 18th.
Angad Cheema began the day with two birdies but then made pars and dropped a bogey to be one-under for the day through 13 holes. He then pushed ahead with three birdies between the 14th and the 17th.
Ankur Chadha mixed four birdies with a bogey during his 69 which featured two conversions from a range of 12 to 20 feet.
Chandigarh's Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Ahmedabad’s Anshul Patel, Delhi's Chiragh Kumar and Om Prakash Chouhan of Mhow were in tied fourth at six-under 138.
Sunit Chowrasia was the highest-placed Kolkata golfer in tied eighth at five-under 139. His second round 68 included four successive birdies on the front-nine.
Mari Muthu of Bengaluru, one of the five joint leaders from round one, dropped to tied eighth after a 71 on Friday.
Defending champion Mithun Perera (73-73) of Sri Lanka was tied 33rd at two-over 146.
Also Read : Teen star Jahanvi grabs fourth win of the year at 13th Leg of Hero WPGT
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Muthu, Gupta, three others in joint lead at ICC RCGC Open Golf C'ship
Kolkata, Nov 25 (Golf news) Five golfers, including multiple PGTI winners Harendra Gupta and Angad Cheema, shot matching scores of four-under 68 to enjoy the first round lead at the Rs. 40 lakh ICC RCGC Open Golf Championship here on Thursday.
Bengaluru's Mari Muthu R, Gurugram's Ankur Chadha and Vikrant Chopra of Noida are the other three golfers at the top.
On a packed leaderboard, the leading quintet was one shot ahead of six players bunched in tied sixth at three-under 69 which included Akram Ali Mollah of Kolkata, Tapy Ghai, Sri Lankan Anura Rohana, last week’s winner Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Kshitij Naveed Kaul and Kurush Heerjee.
It was a high scoring day that witnessed sub-par rounds by only 31 players in a field of 126.
Mari and Harendra, both room-mates this week, found themselves at the top of the pack with the former firing an eagle, four birdies and two bogeys and the latter returning a bogey-free round with four birdies to his credit.
Harendra, multiple winner on the PGTI, has had a promising run since the resumption of the tour in September having posted two top-10s and two other top-20s. He is currently 22nd on the Order of Merit.
Angad, currently 23rd on the PGTI Order of Merit, came up with five birdies and a bogey on Thursday.
Angad, a winner on the PGTI, was five-under through 17 holes when he was looking good for the sole lead. However, he bogeyed the closing ninth, missing a five-footer, for his only blemish of the day that saw him drop down into the joint lead at four-under.
Ankur got off to a whirlwind start on the back-nine with four birdies on his first five holes before dropping bogeys on the 15th and 18th. He made a recovery, picking up two birdies on the front-nine.
After being even-par on the back-nine, Vikrant too made his way up the leaderboard by firing four birdies on the front-nine.
Defending champion Mithun Perera of Sri Lanka carded a one-over 73 to be tied 42nd.
Also Read : Vani lands 5 birdies on back nine to take 3-shot lead in 13th Leg of WPGT
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Mithun Perera top draw in RCGC Open
Kolkata, Nov 23 (Golf news) Defending champion and Sri Lankan ace Mithun Perera will be the top draw in the second edition of the 'ICC RCGC Open Golf Championship Powered by Urbana' beginning here from Thursday.
The tournament will see top Indian professionals in the PGTI Order of Merit like Manu Gandas, Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Om Prakash Chouhan, Akshay Sharma, Amardeep Malik, M Dharma and Kshitij Naveed Kaul, as well as the experienced Shamim Khan and Mukesh Kumar, among others.
Other international players in the fray are Sri Lankans Anura Rohana, N Thangaraja and K Prabagaran, Bangladeshis Mohammad Zamal Hossain Mollah, Badal Hossain, Mohammad Sayum, Mohammad Dulal Hossain and Mohammad Akbar Hossain.
Kolkata-based professionals such as former PGTI Order of Merit champion Shankar Das, former Indian Open champion Feroz Ali Mollah and other leading players such as Sunit Chowrasia, Divyanshu Bajaj and Mohammad Sanju will be local challengers.
"We look forward to this event growing into one of the biggest attractions in Kolkata, one of India's leading golfing centres, in the future," PGTI CEO Uttam Singh Mundy said.
"We're excited about returning to the RCGC, one of the top championship venues in the country, after a gap of two years." Cricket legend Kapil Dev, who was included into PGTI as a board member, will also attend the meet and interact with the participants during his brief one-day visit on Friday.
Also Read : Kapur, Sandhu and Chawrasia gear up for Phuket Championship
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Sandhu clinches maiden title with dominating final round of 64
Digboi (Assam), Nov 20 (Golf News) Chandigarh's Yuvraj Singh Sandhu claimed his maiden title on the PGTI in style with a dominating final round performance of eight-under 64 at the Rs 60 lakh IndianOil SERVO Masters Golf here on Saturday.
Sandhu's (66-68-67-64) tournament tally of 23-under 265 set the record for the lowest winning total at the Digboi Golf Links as he registered a thumping six-shot victory with Bengaluru's M Dharma (69-68-68-66) finishing runner-up at 17-under 271 following his last round of six-under 66.
The 24-year-old Yuvraj, the overnight leader by two shots, came up with an eagle, eight birdies and two bogeys in round four to pick up the winning cheque worth Rs. 9,69,900 and thus zoom from 11th place to sixth position in the PGTI Order of Merit for 2020-2021 with his season's earnings moving to a total of Rs. 33,69,400.
Sandhu, the son of an Army officer, had enjoyed an exceptional season prior to landing in Digboi with nine previous top-10s including six in the last seven events.
The two-time winner on the PGTI Feeder Tour began the day with a bogey on the first but soon regained ground with birdies on the third, fifth and seventh. He chipped-in on the fifth.
From the third till the eighth hole, M Dharma was breathing down Yuvraj's neck as the former sank five birdies to trail the latter by just one shot. However, a couple of erratic shots led to Dharma's double-bogey on the ninth.
Sandhu then made a crucial chip-putt birdie on the 11th to seize the momentum as he got on a hot streak making three birdies, an eagle and a birdie on the next five holes that stretched his lead to seven shots and sealed the deal for him.
Yuvraj, the 2019 PGTI Feeder Tour Order of Merit champion, produced two excellent drives, a 30-feet conversion and two 10-feet conversions during his dream run from the 11th to the 16th.
Sandhu's bogey on the 17th didn't change the equation as his nearest rival Dharma was a fair distance away with just three birdies on the back-nine.
Yuvraj's 23-under 265 bettered the previous lowest winning total of 20-under 268 at the Digboi Golf Links achieved by Mukesh Kumar in 2002, Shankar Das in 2015 and Honey Baisoya in 2016.
Yuvraj, the leader for the previous two days, said, "I started with the same feeling as the first three days but Dharma played some phenomenal golf on the first eight holes and he gave me a tough time on the front-nine. But on the back-nine I got the reins back and took control.
"I've let my clubs do the talking, all the hard work I've put in is paying off. I can't be more thankful to my team consisting of my coach and physio. They've all been part of this process.
It's a special moment for me and I want to treasure it. I want to let it sink in and get my tub of ice cream to celebrate." Delhi's Sachin Baisoya (66) matched his career-best finish of tied third as he totalled 15-under 273 for the week.
Om Prakash Chouhan (70) of Mhow also claimed tied third place along with Baisoya.
Chandigarh's Harendra Gupta (69) finished fifth at 14-under 274.
Local golfer Deepraj Chetia (69-71-72-76) took tied 33rd place at even-par 288.
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Yuvraj surges ahead with second round 68 in Digboi
Digboi (Assam), Nov 18 (Golf news) Chandigarh's Yuvraj Singh Sandhu surged ahead with a second round of four-under 68 at the Rs 60 lakh IndianOil SERVO Masters Golf 2021 being played at the Digboi Golf Links here on Thursday.
The 24-year-old Yuvraj (66-68), placed three off the lead in tied second position after round one, had a slow start to the day but made big gains on the back-nine to move his total to 10-under 134 on day two.
Sri Lanka's Anura Rohana shot the day's best score of six-under 66 to rise to tied second at nine-under 135 along with Harendra Gupta (68) of Chandigarh.
The cut went at even-par 144. Fifty professionals made the cut.
Earlier in the day, the start of play was delayed by 45 minutes due to fog. Play got underway at 6:45 am. The 18 players who could not finish their first round on Wednesday, came out and completed their round in the morning. The second round began simultaneously.
Among those who completed round one on Thursday morning was Om Prakash Chouhan of Mhow, who shot a 66, to join Yuvraj and Shravan Desai of Ahmedabad in tied second, three shots behind leader Anshul Patel, another Ahmedabad golfer.
In round two, Yuvraj, a two-time winner on the PGTI Feeder Tour, was even-par for the day through 10 holes having made a birdie and bogey before he hit his stride with four birdies between the 11th and 18th.
Sandhu came close to holing out his chip for eagle on the 11th and almost drove the green on the par-4 14th. The 2019 PGTI Feeder Tour Order of Merit champion then played two more accurate wedge shots that led to birdies on the 15th and 18th.
Yuvraj, who turned pro in 2018, said, "I was mentally in that state where I felt I had to carry forward the momentum from yesterday. Therefore, I was a little anxious to begin with. That's when I told myself that it's just another day of golf so why not enjoy it.
"The post-COVID hard work on the course and in the gym with my coach and fitness trainer seems to be paying off. I'm following the same thought process on and off the golf course for the last few weeks which has in turn contributed to the consistency in my performances.
"The key from here on would be finding maximum greens at this course which has relatively smaller greens. I need to create more birdie opportunities for myself to keep the rhythm going." Anura Rohana (69-66) fired the day's best score of 66 to climb 11 spots to tied second. Rohana, who was even-par for his first 11 holes of the day, went on a birdie-spree with five straight birdies from the third till the seventh as he converted some long putts and made a chip-in on the sixth. He closed the day with another birdie on the ninth.
Harendra Gupta (67-68), lying overnight tied fifth, moved up three spots to joint second after posting a 68. Gupta, a former champion, began the day with a bogey on the first before rallying with five birdies thereafter including a chip-in on the third and birdies on three of the four par-5s.
Chouhan (70) was placed fourth at eight-under 136 while M Dharma (68) of Bengaluru and Bangladesh's Md Akbar Hossain (69) were both in tied fifth place at seven-under 137.
Round one leader Anshul Patel shot a 76 to slip to tied 10th at five-under 139.
The only local golfer to make the cut was Deepraj Chetia (69-71) who ended the day in tied 15th at four-under 140.
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Anshul Patel hogs limelight with sizzling first round 63
Digboi (Assam), Nov 17 (Golf news) Ahmedabad's Anshul Patel hogged the limelight with a sizzling first round of nine-under 63 to lead by three shots at the IndianOil SERVO Masters at the Digboi Golf Links here on Wednesday.
Patel's good friend and room-mate Shravan Desai, another Ahmedabad-based professional, was tied second at six-under 66 at the Rs 60 lakh event.
Chandigarh's Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (66) too took a share of second place on day one.
The start of round one was delayed by one hour and 15 minutes in the morning due to fog.
As a result of the delayed start, 18 players out of a total of 117 could not finish their first round on Wednesday. They will come back and resume their round at 6 am local time on Thursday.
The left-handed rookie Anshul Patel, currently ranked 74th in the PGTI Order of Merit and fighting for a spot in the top-60 to retain his card for next year, played some great wedge shots on the back-nine that helped him set up four of his five birdies before the turn.
He also had a 20-feet conversion on the 16th and a bogey on the 17th.
The 26-year-old Patel, playing at Digboi for only the second time, landed it close yet again on the second, third and eighth to pick up three more shots.
Anshul found the green in two on the closing par-5 ninth before draining an eight-footer for eagle, thus ending up with his lowest score in a tournament.
“I felt I was in the zone since the start of the day. I knew if my putts rolled in, I would shoot a good number today. Closing the day with birdie-eagle on the last two holes did a lot for my confidence," Anshul said.
“I’ve been trying to figure out a few things about my game and from the Srinagar event onwards in September I picked up a few things on how I should play around my strengths. That’s given some direction to my game. I’m still looking to putt better though.” Shravan Desai, another rookie like Patel, shot an error-free 66 in his very first competitive round at the Digboi Golf Links.
Desai, currently 68th in the PGTI’s money list, is also vying for a spot in the top-60 to retain his PGTI card. He made two 12 to 15 feet conversions on Wednesday.
Yuvraj Singh Sandhu produced eight birdies and two bogeys during his 66.
Gurugram’s Shivendra Singh Sisodia, former champion Harendra Gupta of Chandigarh and Panchkula’s Angad Cheema were in tied fourth having shot scores of 67.
The two local golfers who made promising starts were Deepraj Chetia (tied 13th at three-under 69) and Dulal Kalowar (tied 37th at even-par 72).
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Former champions Shamim, Mukesh lead a competitive field at PGTI event in Digboi
Digboi, Nov 16 (Golf news) Former champions, including Shamim Khan and Mukesh Kumar, will vie for top honours when the 21st edition of the Indian Oil SERVO Masters golf tournament begins at the picturesque Digboi Golf Links here on Wednesday.
The Rs 60 lakh event, which is being held under the aegis of the TATA Steel Professional Golf Tour of India, will feature a field of 117 players, including 115 professionals and two amateurs.
The top 50 players and ties will make the cut after round two.
The field will feature top professionals such as Manu Gandas, Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Akshay Sharma as well as former champions Shankar Das, Harendra Gupta and Sanjay Kumar, besides Shamim and Mukesh Kumar.
The foreign challenge would be led by Sri Lankans Anura Rohana, Mithun Perera, N Thangaraja and K Prabagaran and Bangladesh's Md Zamal Hossain Mollah, Badal Hossain, Md Sayum and Md Akbar Hossain.
The local professionals in the field are Deepraj Chetia, Karanbir Singh Lall, Biren Karmakar, Deven Bhumij, Dulal Kalowar, Bipon Murah, Arun Gowala and Binod Gogoi. The local amateurs in the field are Alok Barua and Jakir Hussain.
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Shiv Kapur prevails over Rashid Khan in playoff
Chandigarh, Nov 14 (Golf news) Shiv Kapur prevailed over Rashid Khan in a playoff at the Rs. 1.5 crore Jeev Milkha Singh Invitational 2021 to register his first ever win at a PGTI event, here on Sunday.
The tournament was decided in a playoff for the fourth year in succession.
The Dubai-based Kapur (64-68-67-70), who hails from Delhi and Khan (65-67-69-68), another Delhi golfer, were in a deadlock at 19-under 269 at the top of the leaderboard after regulation play having shot final rounds of 70 and 68 respectively at the Chandigarh Golf Club.
Olympian Udayan Mane (69-68-67-67) took third place at 17-under 271 after returning a second straight 67.
Shiv, a six time international winner, who also has two previous wins on the Indian domestic tour to his name, came up with a brilliant second shot from the rough to make a two-putt for par on the playoff hole (18th hole) even as two-time Asian Tour winner Rashid hit his second shot into the water which effectively ended his challenge.
Earlier in the day, the 39-year-old Shiv, the overnight leader by one shot, struggled with his hitting and as a result dropped three bogeys on the front-nine with just one birdie in exchange.
A monster 50-feet birdie conversion on the 11th seemed to be the defining moment of the day for him.
Thereafter, Kapur kept landing it within six feet to pick up birdies on the 13th, 16th and 17th.
He missed a four-footer for birdie and outright victory on the 18th but came back stronger in the playoff to lift the title at his close friend Jeev Milkha Singh's event and take home the winning cheque worth Rs. 24,24,750.
Kapur said, "It was not my prettiest round of golf. I had no rhythm and was all over the place to begin with. The first bit of good luck I had was with the long putt on the 11th." "That's when I told my caddie that this is like the fourth quarter of a basketball game and we can get back. I then had a good back nine and am proud of the way I came back and won despite not having my A game. I was pretty happy with the way I played the last three holes." "Winning Jeev's event is also special since he's like my elder brother and his family is like my second family. Without Jeev's guidance I wouldn't be half the player I am." Khan, who was two shots off the lead at the start of the day, went steady on the front-nine with two birdies and a bogey before emerging as a hot contender for the title with a much better back-nine that saw him make three birdies.
Khan, a three-time PGTI Order of Merit champion, sank a 30-feet birdie putt on the 17th. He made par on the 18th but found the water with his second shot on the playoff hole where he had a bad lie.
Khan had earlier lost out in a marathon playoff to Ajeetesh Sandhu at the 2019 edition of the event. He took home a prize money cheque worth Rs. 16,74,750, while climbing from 16th to seventh position in the PGTI Order of Merit.
While Pune-based Udayan Mane ended third, two shots behind the winner, Chandigarh's Aadil Bedi, who was overnight second and one off the lead, closed the week in fourth after his final round of 72 took his tally to 16-under 272.
Kshitij Naveed Kaul of Delhi was fifth at 15-under 273.
The four Chandigarh golfers, other than Aadil, who finished inside the top-10 were Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (tied sixth at 12-under 276), Abhijit Singh Chadha (eighth at 11-under 277), former champion Ajeetesh Sandhu and last year's champion Karandeep Kochhar (both tied 10th at nine-under 279).
Kochhar continues as the PGTI Order of Merit leader with season's earnings of Rs. 49,59,880.
Among the other marquee names in the field, Gaganjeet Bhullar shot the day's best score of 66 to finish tied 13th at eight-under 280, SSP Chawrasia and former champion Chikkarangappa were both tied 16th at seven-under 281 while Jyoti Randhawa was tied 33rd at three-under 285.
US-based Varun Chopra won the trophy for the best performing amateur as he closed the week in tied 26th at four-under 284.
Also Read : Kapur leads by one stroke at Jeev Milkha Singh Invitational
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Kapur leads by one stroke at Jeev Milkha Singh Invitational
Chandigarh, Nov 13 (Golf news) Experienced golfer Shiv Kapur turned in five-under 67 to grab a slender one-shot advantage in a packed leaderboard after the third and penultimate round of the Jeev Milkha Singh Invitational here on Saturday.
Kapur (64-68-67), a four-time winner on the Asian Tour, was 17-under 199 after three days in the Rs. 1.5 crore event Presented by TAKE Sports.
The Dubai-based golfer, one of the pre-tournament favourites, built on his solid previous rounds to be the leader for the third day running at the Chandigarh Golf Club.
Aadil Bedi (68-65-67), a winner on the PGTI in early 2020, kept local hopes alive as he went error-free for the second straight day during his 67 to move up one spot to second position at 16-under 200.
Delhi's Rashid Khan (65-67-69), a two-time Asian Tour winner, slipped out of the overnight joint lead and dropped to third place at 15-under 201 following his 69.
Delhi's Kshitij Naveed Kaul (69) occupied fourth place at 13-under 203.
Gurugram-based Dhruv Sheoran carded the day's best score of eight-under 64 to climb 10 places to tied fifth at 12-under 204. Olympian Udayan Mane (67) was also tied for fifth along with Sheoran.
The 39-year-old Kapur, looking for his first title on the PGTI, had a brisk start as he made four birdies on the first eight holes which included three conversions from a range of 10 to 25 feet.
Kapur, who was bogey-free through his first 44 holes of the tournament, then hit a rough patch dropping three bogeys in exchange for a lone birdie between the ninth and 12th holes.
He missed a couple of par putts on that stretch, including a two-footer on the 12th.
Kapur, originally hailing from Delhi, rallied with three birdies thereafter as his accurate wedge shots set up short birdie putts on the 13th, 16th and 17th that gave him the sole lead for the first time this week.
"Heading into round four, I'll look to continue doing what I've done since the start of the event," Kapur said.
"The focus will be on keeping it in play, giving myself opportunities and making those crucial putts to keep the momentum going." Aadil Bedi carded five birdies and the ones that stood out were his 40-feet conversion on the ninth and his chip-in from the bunker on the 13th. He has so far dropped just one double-bogey in the tournament and there are no bogeys on his card.
Rashid made gains with two birdies on the first 10 holes followed by an eagle on the 13th. He conceded a bogey on the 16th but came back with a superb recovery from the trees to salvage a par on the 17th and keep himself in contention.
Besides Bedi, there were three other Chandigarh professionals in the top-10 as Yuvraj Singh Sandhu and Abhijit Singh Chadha were tied seventh at 11-under 205, while defending champion Karandeep Kochhar climbed 12 spots to tied ninth at nine-under 207 after his round of 65.
Among the other marquee names in the field, former champion Ajeetesh Sandhu of Chandigarh and SSP Chawrasia were both in tied 11th at eight-under 208 while Jyoti Randhawa was another three shots back in tied 18th.
Former champion Chikkarangappa of Bengaluru was tied 23rd at four-under 212. Gaganjeet Bhullar was tied 34th at two-under 214.
The two amateurs to make the cut, US-based Varun Chopra (three-under 213) and Aryan Roopa Anand (even-par 216) of Bengaluru, were placed tied 26th and tied 49th respectively.
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Shiv Kapur, Abhijit Singh Chadha share round one lead
Chandigarh, Nov 11 (Golf news) Six-time international winner Shiv Kapur and Abhijit Singh Chadha got off to flying starts with splendid rounds of eight-under 64 to share the first round lead at the Jeev Milkha Singh Invitational 2021 golf tournament, Presented by TAKE Sports here on Thursday.
While Dubai-based Kapur had a bogey-free day, two-time PGTI winner Chadha, playing at his home course, fired an eagle, seven birdies and a bogey.
Delhi's Rashid Khan produced an impressive error-free seven-under 65 to be placed third.
The 39-year-old Kapur, who has had a few starts on the European Tour this year, picked up his first birdie of the day on the fifth hole and didn't look back thereafter as he collected seven more birdies, including two on the 16th and 17th.
Interestingly, Kapur had enjoyed a similar start at the 2018 edition of the event when he had shot a first round of 65 to be the joint leader.
"I was solid all the way round. I didn't birdie two of the short par-5s and left a couple of putts out there but overall it was a clean card with no bogeys. I also holed my fair share of putts," Kapur said.
"I hit lots of fairways and all 18 greens in regulation. However, it's a long way to go and I will look to try and build from here.
"I've not played enough competitive golf of late, so I was worried about being a little bit rusty. But the good start to the week helped me shake off the rust. This is a great tune-up for me ahead of the restart of the Asian Tour in a couple of weeks from now." The 30-year-old Chadha, who began his round from the 10th tee, recorded a 64 courtesy his hot putter. After sinking his first birdie on the 13th, the tall and lanky golfer added an eagle, six more birdies and a bogey to his card. He sank a 45-footer on the fifth and a 30-feet putt on the seventh.
The newly-married Chadha, said, "The two 30-feet plus putts were the highlight of the round. It's been a slow season for me but I've worked a lot on my putting and things are coming together now. Playing in home conditions also always helps." Chandigarh's Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, the seasoned Gaurav Ghei of Delhi, Kshitij Naveed Kaul, another Delhi-based player and Gurugram's Tapy Ghai were all in tied fourth place, having shot scores of 67.
Aadil Bedi was the third Chandigarh player in the top-10 as he struck a 68 to be tied eighth.
Among the marquee names in the field, Jyoti Randhawa, SSP Chawrasia, Udayan Mane and former champion Ajeetesh Sandhu of Chandigarh carded 69s to be tied 12th while Gaganjeet Bhullar and former champion S Chikkarangappa were a further shot back in tied 26th place.
Chandigarh's Karandeep Kochhar, the defending champion and PGTI Order of Merit leader, shot a 72 to be tied 50th.
Tournament host Jeev Milkha Singh, who had good friends and fellow Chandigarh professionals Amritinder Singh and Gurbaaz Mann as his playing partners, returned a 75 to be placed tied 89th.
Jeev said, "I was pleasantly surprised that I turned at even-par despite being so rusty. I managed myself quite well off the tee and kept it in play.
"On the front-nine I made three bogeys from the centre of the fairway so that was a little disappointing and just showed that my iron-play was patchy today. I'm looking forward to a better second round.
"I had a good time out there with Amritinder and Gurbaaz as we relived the old memories. We were serious where we needed to be and at other times we joked around and egged each other on and pushed each other for better shots."
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Golf: Khalin Joshi emerges victorious at Jaipur Open
Jaipur, Oct 15 (Golf news) Khalin Joshi's final round of three-under 67 was good enough for him to turn the tables on overnight leader M Dharma and emerge victorious at the Rs 40 lakh Jaipur Open golf tournament presented by Rajasthan Tourism, here on Friday.
Joshi (61-66-64-67), who made a dramatic three-putt from four feet on the last hole to end the tournament with a bogey, won by one shot as he totalled 22-under 258 for the week.
Khalin's fifth career trophy ended his three-year long title drought.
The 29-year-old Joshi, who hails from the Karnataka Golf Association (KGA) course, overcame the disappointment of his runner-up finish in Delhi last week as he bagged a winning cheque worth Rs. 6,46,600 to move up from fifth to third in the PGTI Order of Merit.
He made six birdies and three bogeys on the last day.
"I was not comfortable with my irons today, especially on the approach shots. However, I drove and putted really well. So I said to myself to keep hitting as many fairways and greens as possible and the putter will do the rest of the job," Joshi said.
"The key for me today was making some up and downs and clutch par putts. This win will help me raise my game even more in the future events." Dharma (62-62-65-70), the overnight leader by two shots, slipped to second place with an even-par 70 on the last day as he struggled to hole putts. He ended the week with a total of 21-under 259.
Sunit Chowrasia (64) of Kolkata and Harendra Gupta (65) of Chandigarh took tied third place at 20-under 260. Chowrasia's round featured seven birdies and a bogey while Gupta had an eagle, four birdies and a bogey.
Chandigarh's Yuvraj Singh Sandhu produced the best round of the tournament, a 10-under 60, to claim the tied seventh place at 18-under 262. Yuvraj sank an eagle on the 18th from five feet and also made nine birdies and a bogey during his round.
Olympian Udayan Mane (64) was tied ninth at 17-under 263.
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Indian golfer Anirban Lahiri starts with 71, lies T-87th at the Rocket Mortgage Classic
Detroit (US), Jul 2 (Golf news) Indian golfer Anirban Lahiri had a frustrating day on the greens, carding 1-under 71 in the opening round to lie tied 87th at the Rocket Mortgage Classic here.
Lahiri, who has been striking the ball alright, found 11 of the 18 greens in regulation, but the putts did not fall. He missed at least two putts inside six feet, another inside 10 feet and few just a little longer.
The Olympic-bound golfer birdied the first, seventh and 14th and dropped shots on ninth and 17th. He will need a solid second round to make it to the weekend.
After finishing T-25 at Palmetto Championship at Congaree, Lahiri had missed the cut at Travelers, but got some good news as he qualified for the Olympic Games.
Davis Thompson matched a Detroit Golf Club record with a 9-under 63 to take the early first-round lead. Brandon Hagy and Tom Lewis were two shots back.
Also read: My ultimate goal is to be a world champion and inspire others - Indian golfer Yuvraj Singh Sandhu
Seamus Power and J.J. Spaun shot 66, putting them another stroke behind the surprising leader.
Due to inclement weather play was suspended for a little over three hours and then darkness forced the suspension of the first round with 27 players left on the golf course.
The 22-year-old Thompson, who took advantage of favourable conditions with rain-softened greens and light wind, is in the field as a sponsor exemption after sending an email to tournament officials, asking for a spot.
Defending champion Bryson DeChambeau got off to a shaky start, a day after parting ways with caddie Tim Tucker. He shot 72 and is T-110 and in danger of missing the cut.
News source: PTI
My ultimate goal is to be a world champion and inspire others - Indian golfer Yuvraj Singh Sandhu
It's fair to say that golf is not the most popular sport in India, but the country has seen its share of talent with the likes of Jeev Milkha Singh, Arjun Atwal, Jyoti Randhawa, Anirban Lahiri and Shubhankar Sharma to name a few. Often associated as a rich man’s sport, golf news is a niche market which is slowly and steadily generating interest amongst the masses.
In an exclusive interview with SPOGO, golfer Yuvraj Singh Sandhu speaks about his journey as a golfer, the influence of his army background, mental health, training during the pandemic, promoting golf at the grassroots, getting more Indians to win at the highest level and his future goals and aspirations.
Q 1) When were you first introduced to golf and how did your interest in the sport grow?
I was first introduced to golf when my father was posted in Rangapahar in Dimapur. My father was the golf secretary at the Golf Club and a coach from Hyderabad asked me to make a few swings and have fun on the golf course. My mother was very keen for me to start a sport that would make me a better human being rather than an athlete. She introduced me to the sport but both my parents realized that I had a touch for this game and I was lucky enough to have my best friend with me who also played golf. Whenever we wanted to spend time, we would go to the golf course, chipping, putting, hitting some golf balls and walking around the course. Our fathers also used to play together so it was a good bonding experience not just for us but also for our bond with the game as well.
Q 2) As you come from an army background, how much of an influence has it had on your golf career?
The army has always been an influence for me and will always be a major part of my life. It has given me and my family support and options to choose different sports. In India, golf is considered to be a very expensive sport but the army golf courses that I have been to have been so supportive and upcoming that they believe in producing athletes if it’s possible. Other than golf, the army influence gives me that extra edge to not give up and push my limits. My dad is a commando and he has worked very hard in the army. The endurance that he has shown me while I was growing up, the extra edge, physical and mental fitness, never giving up, always being on top, working hard and paving my way through irrespective of whether I’m talented or gifted are qualities that have come from the army. I’m really grateful to the armed forces for this.
Q 3) Golf as a sport demands great mental strength. What do you do to keep yourself mentally positive ahead of big tournaments? Tell us about your training regime?
Golf is a game which is a game played between the five inches of the ears. It’s very important to stay sane, calm and unlike other outdoor athletes that can be aggressive, a golfer can be aggressive in training or practice but not while playing a tournament. You need to be calm and hold your nerves under pressure and it’s something that changes the way you look at golf. I have started to meditate to maintain my mental capability to perform at the highest levels. Initially I didn’t enjoy it because I felt it was a pointless activity, but knowing yourself mentally and having the ability to control your thoughts consciously or subconsciously to channel out other things and focus is a very important quality. I do take care of my mental health as my sister is practicing clinical psychotherapy and she helps me a lot with my mental health, issues related to anxiety and performance pressures. As an athlete, I consider it to be normal to be a little anxious, get those butterflies before a big or small event but controlling those butterflies is something in our control. I try my best to stay calm, in control and keep learning from others about how they keep their composure. I have mentors such as Jeev Milkha Singh sir who have taught me how to control myself on the golf course, going about entering a tournament and staying in the present. Right now, there are no upcoming tournaments until August, so it’s my off season. I have a schedule, workout and practice regime designed by my trainer, golf coach and physiotherapist and I try to stick to it as much as possible and also push myself to get better, stronger and a better version of myself overall.
Q 4) You won your maiden title in the PGTI Feeder Tour Event at Karnal in 2019, tell us about your experience?
Karnal was a memorable win and I never felt out of place when I entered that week, even though I was a bit nervous towards the end. I felt everything was under control which is something that can bring a win for a golfer. That was the first tournament where I played in an absolutely different golf course because it was the first time I played in Karnal and I just wanted to have fun. When I got back home, everyone was very happy and satisfied with the way I played the tournament and for getting my first win as a professional golfer. That one win did give me a boost but I would like to win back to back more often and I came back with the feeling that I need to work much harder.
Q 5) How challenging was it to continue training in the ongoing pandemic situation? What did you do to keep yourself in good shape?
These are really testing times. I feel the only way to get through this is to spread positivity and appreciate what you have. I have been trying to stay grateful for everything I have everyday. In December, I started a 'Gratitude Journal' which is actually helping me a lot. The way I look at life now and how fortunate I am to have this life to be able to stay inside my house and train at the same time. I was lucky that I had a few of my equipment in place just before the lockdown happened. I also have a mat which takes care of one part of my game. Just to keep myself a little more distracted from the fact that the tournaments are not taking place, I have started learning to play guitar which is one thing that is exciting right now. I have given more time to connect with my friends and family at this time as it's very very important to keep checking on your loved ones and that's the only way to spread positivity around the globe. Everyday I wake up with a feeling that if I can make somebody laugh or smile today, that will actually see me through the day. That's what's keeping me going through this lockdown. I'm sure we all will come out of this COVID lockdown much smarter, brighter and we all will be more hunger driven for our professional lives as that's also something very important. I know it's a very tough time but you have to see the best and you have to just accept what it is and have some faith and belief in God.
Q 6) What do you think India needs to do in order to get more participation in the sport from grassroot levels?
I feel that schools are very much responsible as to how a child sees the world. In our society, I feel that the people are told why don't you just get a degree first or why don't you become a doctor, engineer or join armed forces or fly abroad and get a job there. Nobody tells you that you might actually be the one to take the tricolor to the Olympics or to the Asian games or be a World Champion. People always find a way to make an excuse like I don't know if you are going to be a world champion but nobody can take education away from you. I agree with that, but I feel that if you don't try in the very first place and don't put yourself out there just to start the journey of being a world champion or being somebody who wants to be an athlete. How can you just sit back and say education is something that you should do? I think we need to be encouraging about junior golf and sub junior golf because I feel golf is a passion driven game. If somebody has the passion, it's very difficult to just leave the sport. I believe a lot of people need to invest in junior, sub junior levels and a lot of coaches also need to invest their time. A lot of schools should introduce golf and while that is happening, I think we should encourage juniors to play, encourage sub juniors, amateurs and girls just to go out there and have fun while playing the sport because you just experience a different part of yourself when you are there on the golf course just practising. It's like a different zone altogether. Grassroot levels will be just from schools or probably getting much experienced players to interact with these junior players or children in schools will help. Interactions with hall of fame players like Jyoti Randhawa, Jeev Milkha Singh, Shiv Kapur, Ajeetesh Sandhu. These players should have an interaction platform which is lacking in our society. People see it as okay, he is an athlete but how many athletes become the top five or top ten. They tried, they became champions. You need to try first to become a top five or top ten. You can't just sit back and say oh no we will educate our child. Hence I feel it's more to do with the whole society thinking that athletics and a sportsmen's life is not bad at all. It's actually a life where a child once he or she becomes a major gets to know the struggles of their lives. They actually get to know what life is. When they have a limited amount of money in their account they need to train and perform with that which is what is learning to live a life. Therefore, I think the introduction of sports needs to be more, visibility of the sport needs to be more. More and more people should talk about golf in India. People should be encouraged when they are practising on public golf courses or in stadiums. There are a few stadiums that have made a range within the stadium premises. Siri Fort has done a great job by giving a whole range inside the stadium. These things need to be encouraged by our society, government, elderly and by the people who can actually make a difference.
Q 7) What would it take for Indians to win the PGA Tour, Green Jackets and medals at the Olympics and Asian Games?
I think the medals can come only with quality practice. The quality of golf courses in India needs to be much better and they need to be equalised with the world golf course such as golf courses that host PGA tour events, European tour events. I feel India is lacking there. There are a lot of management issues in the golf club because people are doing it just for the sake of doing it. They don't want players to come out. If we have good quality practise sessions, quality coaches, in fact we do have really good coaches and trainers in India but the whole process of adaptation from the golf courses in India to the golf course in Europe or America is a big difference that an athlete has to travel and play in totally different conditions. I feel that when we start working on the conditions of the golf courses and start bringing up their quality I think we could give ourselves a very good chance and we could actually bag a lot of medals at the Olympics and the Asian games.
Q 8) As a golfer, who did you look up to in your growing years? What are your future goals and ambitions and how do you plan to achieve them?
As a kid I looked up to the one and only Tiger Woods. He has inspired me and is still inspiring me. The way he looks at the game, the way his mental strength is, the never give up mentality, he is an army kid, I'm an army kid. He was never the biggest on the field, he was never the strongest on the field but he worked for it and I relate to him personally because I feel I am on the same path and I feel what Tiger has done for the sport is just inexpressible. It's my goal to try and bring a change in the sport. That would be the ultimate goal of a golfer. If I can bring a change in the sport or I can motivate somebody or inspire the children in my city or my country just to think that one day they can become like Yuvraj Singh Sandhu or become a golfer of that level. I feel that will be my ultimate achievement and goal if I look back and see that I have inspired and motivated people just to be a better athlete and to be a world champion. To achieve that, I will try to work really really hard and play as many tournaments as I can. I'm planning to go to Europe in January. The Indian tour will resume in August and will go on till December but there's going to be a break from March. Hence, from January to March I'm going to Europe to put myself out there and actually test myself with the best players in the world. I'm training really hard and really smart, I have the best team and I feel I should be there sometime soon.