HWPGT: Ankita Tiwana walks away with winner’s cheque

Ankita-Tiwana-2Srinagar: It looked like a comfortable win for Pune’s Shweta Galande on Thursday until she faltered on her last hole giving away the winners cheque to Delhi’s Ankita Tiwana, in a nail biting playoff finish to the 7th leg of the Hero Women’s Professional Golf Tour 2014.

In what can easily be called the battle of nerves the Delhi golfer utilized her experience on the tour to her complete advantage overpowering Shweta Galande in the second play off hole of the INR 7,00,000 tournament. The event, which was being played at the picturesque Royal Springs Golf Course also marks Ankita’s maiden win on the domestic tour.

On a tough day when none on the field could card an even par score, overnight leader Shweta Galande seemed to be in complete control of her game till the very end, only to falter on the very last hole with a bogey to give way to Ankita Tiwana through a play-off. Shweta carded a total of three bogeys on the 2nd, 10th and 18th holes and a double bogey on the 4th hole to finish her day at 5 over 77. Ankita who started her campaign for the final round being placed second on the leader board had an average round today carding one birdie on the 12th hole in addition to three bogeys on the 1st, 5th and 16th holes along with a double bogey on the 10th hole. Both Shweta and Ankita were tied for the first place with identical scores of 220 after 54 holes, before entering the play-offs.

Kolkata’s Neha Tripathi who played one of the most consistent rounds today had a decent start, given the conditions as she played an even par front nine. Her back nine was a mixed bag with a single birdie on the 16th hole and two bogeys on the 12th and 18th holes carding 1 over 73 in the final round. She finished third with a total of 221 after the third and final round.

Given her reputation and current form, Hero Order of Merit leader Vani Kapoor would quickly want to move past her average performance in Srinagar as she finished fourth carding a total of 222 after 54 holes. Vani failed to card a single birdie in the final round, which included three bogeys on the 8th, 9th and 12th holes finishing the day at 3 over 75.

Amateurs Tavleen Batra from Chandigarh and Mehar Atwal from Delhi finished tied 5th with identical scores of 224 after the third and final round. Tavleen carded four birdies, maximum by any golfer today, on the 1st, 2nd, 8th and 14th holes along with five bogeys on the 5th, 7th, 11th, 15th and 16th holes. Delhi’s Mehar Atwal failed to sustain her first round heroics as she faltered carding six over 78 in the final round. Her round today consisted of a lone birdie on the 8th hole in addition to two double bogeys on the 2nd and 17th holes and four bogeys on the 3rd, 4th 13th and 16th holes.

Kapurthala golfer Gursimar Badwal finished seventh with a score 225 while veteran golfer Smriti Mehra finished eighth with a score of 229 after 54 holes.

The Tour now moves to Bengaluru for Leg 8. The Hero Women’s Professional Golf Tour 2014 comprises a total of fifteen legs spanning across key locations in India.