Gaganjeet Bhullar bags fifth Asian Tour title with win in Indonesia Open golf
Jakarta: India's Gaganjeet Bhullar carded 16-under-268 for the week to lift his fifth Asian Tour title with victory at the Indonesia Open, here on Sunday.
Bhullar, who had a forgettable outing at the World Cup of Golf last week, fired a bogey-free 68 in the final round to come home the winner. He thus ended up being the wire-to-wire leader from round one till the very end. He shot scores of 64 67 69 and 69.
Bhullar sank all his three birdies today on the back-nine - 11th, 13th and 14th. He was solid through the week having conceded only three bogeys and a double-bogey over the last four days.
Interestingly, the 25-year-old had also won his first Asian Tour title in Indonesia back in 2009.
Malaysia's Nicholas Fung and Thailand's Chapchai Nirat finished three strokes behind Bhullar in joint second.
Another Indian, Jyoti Randhawa claimed fifth place at 11-under-273 while Anirban Lahiri secured tied sixth at 10-under-274 to make it three Indians in the top-6.
PGTI member Mohammad Siddikur Rahman of Bangladesh finished with a four-day total of 12-under-272 to bag fourth place.
Bhullar has had a brilliant season so far. He posted a runner-up finish at the Avantha Masters, a European Tour & Asian Tour co-sanctioned event, earlier this year.
This win is expected to push him up on the Asian Tour Order of Merit, where he is currently ranked sixth.
Former Asia's No.1 Randhawa fired a 69 to record his second top-5 finish on the Asian Tour in the last one month.
Lahiri, a three-time winner on the Asian Tour, posted a 68 in the final round in Indonesia to grab a share of sixth place. Shiv Kapur, Chiragh Kumar and SSP Chowrasia were all in tied 23rd with identical totals of five-under-279. Sujjan Singh was a further shot behind in tied 29th place.
Among the other Indians who made the cut, Himmat Singh Rai secured tied 35th place (three-under-281), Abhinav Lohan was tied 51st (one-over-285) and Rahil Gangjee claimed 64th position (four-over-288).
"I gave myself a lot of opportunities in the first nine holes but I misjudged my yardages on a few holes. Apart from that, there was no difference in my strategy. Winning takes a lot of patience. I'm glad I stayed patient and showed a lot of confidence," said Bhullar, who took home the winner's prize purse of USD 135,000.
"It was kind of difficult for me when play was suspended. I find it hard to go back to my momentum. But I guess these kind of scenarios are common in Asia. We just have to accept it as it is," he said.
The victory was also a welcome return to form for the Indian who struggled in the last six months and finished last at the World Cup of Golf in Australia last week.
"I haven't had much success this season but I know my game was up there and winning is just a matter of time. I waited so long for my fifth win and this is my 10th consecutive event. Mentally, I was exhausted but Indonesia is one of my favourite cities as I won my first title on the Asian Tour here," said Bhullar.
The bespectacled Fung turned in 32 to raise his hopes of winning his first Asian Tour title before running out of holes. The 23-year-old settled for tied-second, which is his best Asian Tour result since finishing tied fifth in Manila two weeks ago.
"I'm extremely happy with my performance this week. It’s really good to see my name up on the leaderboard amongst the other experienced players," said Fung, hailed as one of the most talented players from Malaysia.
Chapchai, a three-time Asian Tour winner, remains confident that he still has what it takes to end a four-year title drought on the region's premier Tour which is celebrating its 10th season in 2013. His runner-up finish here was his best result this year.
"I'm very happy with my round. I'm very hungry for a victory. I'm getting closer to it. I can really feel it. The win is coming soon."
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