Hyderabad, 01-03-2015

Harendra Gupta registers thrilling come-from-behind win at inaugural Golconda Masters, defeats Shamim Khan in a playoff

Shamim Khan becomes Rolex Rankings leader

Harendra Gupta of Chandigarh wrapped up the inaugural Golconda Masters Golf Championship in style as he defeated Shamim Khan of Delhi in a playoff after coming from behind with a round of three-under-67 on the final day. Harendra and overnight leader Shamim, who carded an even-par-70 on day four, headed for the playoff after ending the tournament with identical totals of 15-under-265.

Harendra Gupta (67-65-66-67), who was overnight second and trailed Shamim Khan (63-68-64-70) by three strokes after round three, began the day with a bogey on the first. Gupta, however, rallied with three straight birdies on the fifth, sixth, seventh and an eagle on the ninth to draw level with Shamim, who had managed just two birdies till then. The 30-year-old Harendra emerged a contender for the title as he made some good chip-putts on the fifth, sixth and seventh and sank an 18-footer on the ninth.

Shamim, the winner at the last PGTI event in Noida, all but blew away his chances of victory with bogeys on the 13th, 15th and 16th to fall three shots behind Harendra with two holes to play. However, the final twist came with Gupta hitting it out of bounds to drop a double-bogey on the 17th as the deficit between him and Shamim came down to one shot. Khan birdied the final hole from 10 feet to take the match into a playoff.

On the playoff hole, the two were in the bunker with their tee shots but Gupta pulled out a great approach shot to land just short of the green while Shamim had to chip out. At the end it was Harendra who came through to claim his eighth career title and fourth win on the PGTI with a five-feet par putt even as Shamim dropped a bogey.

“I’ve won a tournament after a two-year gap so this win will do wonders for my confidence for the rest of the season. I feel the momentum shift today came on the stretch between the fifth and the ninth where I picked up five strokes to draw level with Shamim. The seventh has been lucky for me as I birdied it on day three as well. I lost concentration on the 17th where I found the OB. However, I was pretty confident on the playoff as my playoff record has been pretty good,” said Harendra.

He added, “It’s great to win the inaugural edition of the Golconda Masters and the first tournament at the magnificent HGC. The course conditions have been perfect this week and the Hyderabad Golf Club is a venue I’d love to come back to.”

Harendra Gupta has now climbed from 23rd place to second position in the Rolex Rankings. Shamim Khan, who was denied his second straight win on the PGTI, has now climbed from second place to first position in the Rolex Rankings.

Chandigarh’s Sujjan Singh and Sri Lankan Anura Rohana ended tied third at 10-under-270.

Noida's Amardip Sinh Malik, who set the course record of 61 in round two, finished tied fifth at nine-under-271 along with Delhi's Manav Jaini and Sri Lankan K Prabagaran.

Gaganjeet Bhullar claimed 15th place at five-under-275. He shot a 70 in the final round.

Kolkata’s Shankar Das, the 2014 Rolex Rankings champion, came up with a final round of 71 to end up in tied 18th position at two-under-278.

About PGTI:

Formed in 2006, Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) is the recognised official body of professional golf in India. PGTI's objective is to promote professional golf in the country, as well as to give players an opportunity to be involved in the decision making on all aspects of the game. Headed by Mr. Srinivasan H R (President), PGTI's governing body comprises leading Indian golf professionals. PGTI currently has over 300 members.

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