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Rookie Gauri Karhade wins maiden pro title in sixth attempt

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Gauri Karhade in action during final round

Hyderabad: Rookie Gauri Karhade playing only her sixth event as a pro on the Hero Women’s Pro Golf Tour, stunned the front runners, amateur Shreya Pal, and the seasoned Gaurika Bishnoi, to land her first title on the circuit. She stayed calm and held her nerve to shoot a final round of 73 for a total of two-under 214 and win the 12th Leg by one shot over Gaurika Bishnoi (75) and Afshan Fatima (70).

Afshan Fatima, who made a great charge on the front nine with a two-under 34, held the lead midway through the back nine but dropped crucial back-to-back bogeys on 15th and 16th to fall into a tie for second with Gaurika at one-under 215.

Playing the final group, overnight leader, Shreya Pal began with a flourish on the first with a birdie. But she dropped three bogeys in the next four holes. Gauri, starting the final day two behind leader Shreya and one behind Gaurika, was steady and she parred the first five holes, as Gaurika also dropped a shot on second.

Then it was Gauri’s turn to make a mistake with a double bogey on sixth, but Gaurika dropped a bogey on seventh and Shreya dropped a double bogey. That opened the door for Gauri. Meanwhile, Afshan was making a charge with three birdies against one bogey on the front nine.

After nine holes, it was still a very tight battle. Gaurika, who was four-under for two rounds, was still two-under after 45 holes. Four players, Shreya, Afshan, Gauri and Ananya Datar were at one-under after the front nine.

On the back nine, Gauri and Afshan found birdies on 11th and Gaurika bogeyed to let Gauri and Afshan move into the lead with the two-shot swing. Gauri dropped a shot on 12th to fall back and Afshan was sole leader.

Gauri and Afshan both birdied the 14th at which stage Afshan was ahead at three-under and Gauri was two-under. Gaurika stayed at one-under. Shreya, now five-over for the day after a bogey on 12th, fell back to even par.

Then it was Afshan’s turn to make mistakes and she made two in a row on 15th and 16th that allowed Gauri to sneak ahead. She only had to stay calm and get her pars. She did just that. None of the three, including Gaurika, made birdies on the last two holes, leaving Gauri as the victor.

Gaurika, unable to find birdies the whole day, ended Tied-second with Afshan, who after a great 14 holes made crucial errors to throw away a chance.

Gauri, who started playing at the age of 10 and learnt her early lessons in Thane and Kharghar, has honed her skills at the Poona Golf Club and now resides in Mumbai.

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Bogey-free 67 lifts Shubhankar to tied 9th at BMW PGA Championship

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Shubhankar Sharma golf
Shubhanka Sharma.

Wentworth (United Kingdom): Indian golfer Shubhankar Sharma fired a bogey-free five-under 67 in the second round to be placed tied ninth with a total of six-under at the BMW PGA Championship.

Shubhankar wore a big smile as he walked off the Wentworth Golf Club.

Still smarting under the triple bogey he suffered on the first day and ended with 71, Shubhankar is now six-under and was happy with his play as he was bogey free.

Shubhankar was in the top-10 at tied ninth though there were many players yet to finish.

The other Indian in action, SSP Chawrasia (72-78) however missed the cut.

Jon Rahm (66-67) and Danny Willett (68-65) were the co-leaders at 11-under, while Christiaan Bezuidenhout (68-67) and Justin Rose (67-68) were nine-under and were tied third.

Speaking of his game, Shubhankar said: “Pretty happy with no bogey and I started well with a good 7-Iron to five feet. Then followed a few good pars and four more birdies.

“The key was good putting, actually pretty much everything fell in the slot today. I was finding more fairways, iron play was better and overall I hit much better today than the first day.”

He picked the first and 14th as the two best birdies.

He also admitted conditions were easier in the morning as towards the end of his round, wind started to pick up.

“Six-under for two rounds after a triple on first day felt good and lunch will taste better,” said Shubhankar, who at the Pro-Am was presented with his ‘Rookie of the Year’ for 2018 Trophy by Keith Pelley, the Chief Executive of European Tour.

Following his opening 66 on Thursday, Henrik Stenson praised the greenkeepers, complimenting them on “a great job with the course”.

This year’s date change, with the event switching from May to September, has led to compliments from many, but the West Course has been receiving praise since it underwent a significant renovation in 2016.

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Shubhankar Sharma tied 42nd, Chawrasia tied 69th at BMW PGA Championship

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Shubhankar Sharma

Wentworth (United Kingdom): Shubhankar Sharma was tied 42nd on account of a triple bogey with a score of one-under 71 while SSP Chawrasia shot an even par to be tied 69th after opening round of the BMW PGA Championship.

The talented Sharma survived a big blip on the back nine, when he triple bogeyed on the fourth hole which was Par-5.

Sharma was cruising with birdies on 12th, 13th and 18th holes respectively. He added a fourth birdie on second when disaster struck on Par-5 fourth. He also bogeyed the next hole to be suddenly even par. However he fought back with a birdie on Par-4 sixth and ended the day at 71.

“I am proud of the way I hung despite dropping the triple,” said Sharma, who did well for three days last week at the KLM Open before dropping to 40th on the final day.

Please read: Indian golfers Shubhankar, Chawrasia gear up for PGA Championship

Chawrasia had three each of birdies and bogeys.

Matt Wallace delighted the home crowds in the opening round as the 29-year-old carded a flawless seven under 65 to move into a one-shot lead.

On a sunny and hot day, Wallace, who won three of his four European Tour titles in 2018 was the star of the show.

He opened with a birdie three at the first before a stunning eagle-birdie-birdie run from the fourth hole saw him reach the turn in five under par.

The Londoner cruised home with a couple more birdies to move to the top, ahead of Spain’s Jon Rahm and Swede Henrik Stenson on six under par. Their 2018 Ryder Cup-winning team-mate Justin Rose was a shot behind after a five-under 67.

Justin Rose, Ernie Els, Paul Casey and Danny Willett were among the seven players at four-under 68.

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Indian golfers Shubhankar, Chawrasia gear up for PGA Championship

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Shubhankar Sharma

Surrey: Top Indian golfers Shubhankar Sharma and SSP Chawrasia will face off against the best in business as they begin their campaign at the BMW PGA Championship at the Wentworth Golf Club here on Thursday.

One of the best fields of the year will be on display at the BMW PGA Championship, which will be the first counting tournament in the race to qualify for the 2020 European Ryder Cup Team.

Shubhankar, who featured amongst the top 20 for the most part before faltering on the last day for a T-40 finish at the KLM Open, will be India’s best bet.

Bhullar, who also featured along with Sharma in the tournament, will look to end in a better position after finishing at T-60 at the KLM Open.today’s sports news

Chawrasia, on the other hand, has been struggling with his form and he will need to bring his ‘A’ game to the floor after a T-75 and T-87 finish at the KLM Open and Porsche European Open respectively in the past two weeks.

The tournament will be headlined by FedEx Cup Champion Rory McILroy.

The other major names will include Justin Rose, Jon Rahm, Tommy Fleetwood, Shane Lowry, defending champion Francesco Molinari, Tony Finau, Billy Horschel, Andrew Putman and Patrick Reed.

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