Abhinav Lohan bags his maiden PGTI title

Abhinav Lohan bags his maiden PGTI title

Key highlights: 

  • Abhinav Lohan triumphs with a one -shot margin to record first win on TATA Steel PGTI and second win of the year

  • Round Three leader Karandeep Kochhar finished at second position at 12-under-276.

{Press Release}: Faridabad-based Abhinav Lohan recorded his breakthrough win on the TATA Steel PGTI as he triumphed with a narrow one-shot margin at 13-under-275 at the Indo-MIM presents Bengaluru Open Golf Championship 2019 powered by Karnataka Tourism, an Rs. 40 lakh event played at the Karnataka Golf Association (KGA) course.

The 30-year-old Lohan, who plays at the DLF Golf & Country Club in Gurugram, shot a top-class final round of four-under-68 to continue his dream season. It was Abhinav’s first title on the TATA Steel PGTI and second win of the year as he had also emerged victorious at the PGTI Feeder Tour event in Lucknow two months back to bag his first ever professional trophy.

Chandigarh’s Karandeep Kochhar (71) finished runner-up at 12-under-276 at the tournament which constituted the penultimate leg of the 2019 TATA Steel PGTI season.

Abhinav Lohan (70-67-70-68), who along with the likes of Rashid Khan and Abhijit Singh Chadha, was part of the Indian team that won the silver medal at the 2010 Asian Games in Guangzhou, had a memorable day at the KGA with seven birdies, a bogey, and a double-bogey to show on his card.

Abhinav, lying tied second and two shots off the lead before the final round, made a steady start with pars on the first four holes. Lohan then took control picking up four birdies on the fifth, seventh, eighth and ninth, at the cost of a lone bogey on the sixth.

Lohan was a bit shaky on the 17th too as the finish line drew close. He found the trees there but salvaged par with another 20-feet conversion to carry a two-shot cushion on to the last hole. The man from Faridabad finally sealed it with a par on the last hole.

Abhinav said, “I’m just relieved to win on the main tour for the first time. It’s my ninth season as a professional and I had come close to winning on quite a few occasions in the past. I then had a poor 2018 as I missed 10 cuts in a row and lost my PGTI card. So this victory is even more sweet.

“After a terrific run on the first 14 holes today, I just had some mental glitches on the 16th and 17th. I must admit that I was a bit nervous with victory in sight. But the long birdie conversion on the 17th helped me relax as it gave me a two-shot advantage going onto the last hole.

“I then played safe on the last hole and hit a four-iron off the tee as I was looking for a par. The idea was to hit the green in three and let Karandeep go for broke to catch up with me. It worked out well for me. I’ll now head to the last event of the season with loads of confidence.”

Lohan became the fourth Indian golfer to register his maiden title on the TATA Steel PGTI this season following the likes of Kshitij Naveed Kaul, Priyanshu Singh, and Veer Ahlawat. Abhinav’s victory and winner’s cheque worth Rs. 6,46,600 pushed him up from 43rd to 19th in the PGTI Rankings.

Karandeep Kochhar (67-69-69-71), the third-round leader by two shots, slipped with early bogeys on the third and a fifth and a double-bogey on the sixth where he found the water. He then got back into the match with four birdies on the back-nine before falling just short with a 71. He moved up two spots in the PGTI’s money list from seventh to fifth.

The Bengaluru duo of M Dharma, who shot the day’s best round of 67, and Rahil Gangjee (71) took third and fourth places with totals of 11-under-277 and 10-under-278, respectively.

Eighteen-year-old local amateur Akshay Niranjan (70), playing only his second professional event, took a creditable tied fifth place at nine-under-279 along with Om Prakash Chouhan (69) of Mhow.

Bengaluru-based Aryan Roopa Anand, the second amateur to make the cut, was placed tied 39th at four-over-292.