Free Press Journal

Abhijit canters home to five-stroke win at BILT Open


Mewat: Chandigarh’s Abhijit Singh Chadha bagged his second professional title after he cantered home to a five-stroke win at the BILT Open 2015 here today. Chadha brought in a card of three-under-69 in the final round to end the week with a total of 16-under-272 at the Classic Golf & Country Club.

Ajeetesh Sandhu, another Chandigarh golfer, who shot the day’s best of six-under-66, finished tied second along with Om Prakash Chouhan of Mhow at 11-under-277 at the Rs. 1 crore event. Chadha pocketed a cheque worth Rs. 15 lakh for his win this week that helped him climb from 30th place to number one position in the Rolex Rankings. He now has total earnings of Rs. 17,91,165 for the 2015 PGTI season. Veteran Mukesh Kumar of Mhow is placed second at Rs. 17,40,350.

Abhijit Singh Chadha (68-70-65-69), the overnight leader by two shots, strung together five birdies and two bogeys in round four to take home his first piece of silverware in over three years. The 24-year-old Abhijit had a quiet but steady front-nine as he made pars on the first eight holes. Chadha, well clear of the rest of the field over the first eight, began to gather steam with birdies on the ninth and 10th where he hit a couple of outstanding approach shots.

Abhijit, who won his last title on the PGTI in 2012 in Nepal, started pulling away from the rest as he produced some top-class chip-putt birdies on the 12th, 14th and 15th. The three-putt bogey on the 13th came against the run of play. He then went on to register a comfortable win despite a closing bogey on the 18th.

“I felt quite relaxed out there today. I didn’t feel too much pressure. I had a steady start as I hit most of the greens on the front-nine despite the tough and windy conditions. However, the putts didn’t drop for me in the first half. Nonetheless, I hung in there. No one really challenged my lead today so I knew I just needed to be patient,” said Chadha.

He added, “Last week also I was leading going into the final round but I couldn’t capitalise on it as I had a poor last day of the tournament. I knew I was playing well but nothing really worked for me in round four in Jaipur. However, I put that behind me and didn’t let it affect me this week.

“My father Mr. Mandeep Singh Chadha has been a big influence on me. He’s the reason I started playing golf. I was delighted that he was here to witness my victory today.

Ajeetesh Sandhu (73-72-66-66) fired a second straight 66 to leapfrog from overnight tied 11th to tied second in the
final round. Ajeetesh made seven birdies and a bogey in his last round effort which included birdies on the last three holes.