Prabagaran putts maiden golf title

Coimbatore, April 5: Sri Lanka’s K. Prabagaran claimed his maiden professional title with a playoff win against Om Prakash Chouhan of Mhow in the PGTI Players Championship at the Coimbatore Golf Club here Saturday.

Prabagaran sealed it with a par on the second playoff hole even as Chouhan missed an eight feet par putt. Both Prabagaran and Chouhan had earlier ended the regulation 72 holes with matching scores of nine-under 279.

Prabagaran (70-70-71-68), who was in tied sixth after round three, fired his best score of the week Saturday. His four-under-68 featured five birdies and a lone bogey.

Chouhan (68-68-74-69) had four birdies and a bogey in his final round of 69. A two-time winner on the PGTI, Chouhan missed an eight-feet birdie putt for victory on the 18th.

The two players then headed into their first ever playoff.

The first playoff hole was all square as Chouhan recovered from the bunker for a par while Prabagaran also made par with an up and down from 60 yards. Prabagaran bagged the title after rolling in a one-foot par putt on the second playoff hole even as Chouhan couldn’t salvage a par from the bunker.

Prabagaran, who has now moved up from seventh to third in the 2014 Rolex Rankings, said: “I’m really thrilled to win my first title. I was very consistent through the week. My chipping was excellent today. I was a little nervous after taking the sole lead on the 15th.

“However, I didn’t really feel the pressure during the playoff. I have done well on this course in the past having won the All India Championship here in 2007. I was therefore, familiar with the course conditions and the layout and that gave me an edge.

Delhi’s Rashid Khan (69-71-73-67) and Mukesh Kumar (69-71-71-69) of Mhow were tied third at eight-under-280. While Mukesh was in the lead for a brief period on the final day, Rashid was also in the joint lead at one stage. Rashid’s 67 was the best score of round four.

Leading Scores: 279 – K Prabagaran (70-70-71-68), Om Prakash Chouhan (68-68-74-69); 280 – Rashid Khan (69-71-73-67), Mukesh Kumar (69-71-71-69); 281 – Feroz Ali Mollah (72-66-71-72), Amardip Sinh Malik (70-68-69-74).

IANS