Golf: Kshitij Naveed Kaul eases to MBCO win
Kshitij Naveed Kaul sealed a comfortable six-shot win with a final round of 4-under 68 at the Mujib Borsho Chattogram Open in Chittagong on Saturday
KOLKATA: Kshitij Naveed Kaul sealed a comfortable six-shot win with a final round of 4-under 68 at the Mujib Borsho Chattogram Open in Chittagong on Saturday.
The 21-year-old Kaul (71-63-67-68), the overnight leader by five shots, drove home the advantage scoring eight birdies against two bogeys and a double to total 19-under 269 at the Rs 50 lakh event.
It was his third triumph on the PGTI and the prize cheque of Rs. 8,08,250 lifted him from 10th place to first in the Tata Steel PGTI Order of Merit.
Bangladesh’s leading star Md Siddikur Rahman (71-66-69-69), overnight tied second, finished runner-up on 13-under 275 with a closing 69, the PGTI said.
Kaul, who won his last PGTI event in November 2021, had an eventful front nine with five birdies against a bogey and a double.
The first nine featured two long conversions, two excellent bunker shots and an approach shot that landed within inches of the flag.
Kaul had nine one-putts on the front-nine.
With his commanding lead intact, Kaul shut the door with a steady back nine sinking three birdies against a lone bogey.
He ended up with the day’s best score of 68 and birdies on all four par-5 holes.
Kaul, who turned pro in 2018 and was the best performing rookie that season, said, “I was just focused on repeating what I did over the last two days.
“I managed to execute my plans well on the final day. All aspects of my game came together this week, especially my short game.
“Before the start of the round, I had a feeling that I would putt really well today and that’s what I did with just 23 putts in the day.
“I was confident from the start of the week and felt I could win. It’s been great to win two titles in such a short span of time.
“I’ve had a terrific start to the year and would like to make it count from here on,” added Kaul, who had posted a top-5 finish in Ahmedabad last week.
Two-time Asian Tour winner Siddikur had an eagle-two on the ninth along with four birdies and three bogeys during his fourth round.
However, he was unable to mount a challenge for the lead on the final day.
Bangladesh’s Badal Hossain (71-67-70-69), the only other player besides Kshitij and Siddikur to shoot four sub-par rounds this week, fired a 69 to move up three spots to tied third on 11-under 277.
Md Akbar Hossain (67-66-73-71), another Bangladesh golfer who was tied for second after the penultimate round, dropped one place to tied third after his 71 in round four.
Sunit Chowrasia was the other Indian to finish inside the top-5 as he claimed fifth place on 10-under 278.
Bangladesh’s Md Zamal Hossain Mollah took sixth place on 9-under 279.
Chiragh Kumar, who was tied second after round three along with Siddikur and Akbar, ended seventh on 8-under 280.