Jaipur, Sep 27: In what turned out to be a shootout between two promising rookies and emerging names of Indian golf, Gurugram-based Priyanshu Singh defeated Delhi’s Kshitij Naveed Kaul in a playoff at the TATA Steel PGTI’s Jaipur Open 2019 to register his maiden win.
Priyanshu (23), the 2019 PGTI Qualifying School champion, and Kshitij (18), a winner on the PGTI this season, went into the playoff after both ended the regulation 72 holes with matching totals of 19-under-261 at the Rambagh Golf Club.
While Priyanshu shot a determined five-under-65 on day four, Kshitij produced the best round of the tournament, a spectacular 10-under-60. Priyanshu finally prevailed on the first playoff hole.
The Bengaluru duo of M Dharma (68) and Syed Saqib Ahmed (69) finished joint third at 18-under-262 at the Rs. 30 lakh event.
Priyanshu Singh (65-68-63-65), lying overnight third and three off the lead, was slow off the blocks on Friday as he managed just a birdie and a bogey on the front-nine. It was the birdies on the 11thand 12th that really got him going, especially the 30-ft conversion on the latter.
Priyanshu, who attended theUniversity of South Florida and spent some time playing college golf in the United States prior to turning pro, then made a late charge with birdies on the 15th, 17th and 18th to set up the title clash with Kshitij. Singh tapped-in on the 15th after a great approach and played an exceptional bunker shot on the 18th which almost found the hole.
Priyanshu’s winning purse of Rs. 4,84,950, lifted him from 29th to 14th position in the TATA Steel PGTI Order of Merit.
Earlier in the day Kshitij Naveed Kaul (68-69-64-60), lying overnight tied 18th and eight off the lead, posted an unbelievable 60 to storm into the clubhouse lead and set the bar at 19-under. Kaul’s flawless round featured eight birdies and an eagle. Kshitij continued to be in third place on the PGTI Order of Merit.
Syed Saqib Ahmed, the round three leader by one shot, slipped to tied third after returning a 69 on Friday.
M Dharma, who was one off the lead in second place after round three, also slipped to tied third after firing a 68 in the last round.
Patna’s Aman Raj (65), the winner of the tournament’s second edition last year, claimed joint fifth place at 16-under-264 along with Delhi’s Shamim Khan (65), the winner of the inaugural edition in 2017, and Mysuru’s Yashas Chandra (66).
Delhi’s Rashid Khan, who continues to enjoy a comprehensive lead in the PGTI Order of Merit with season’s earnings of Rs. 44,46,903, secured 10th place at 14-under-266. He shot a final round of 64. (UNI)