Chikkaarangappa S clinches season-ending PGTI Tour Championship

Bengaluru golfer steals the show on the final day; In-form Manu Gandas emerges as PGTI Rankings champion

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By: TNI Team | NEW DELHI
Updated: 24 December, 2022 9:03 pm IST
S Chikkarangappa won the PGTI season ending tournament

Bengaluru’s Chikkarangappa S stole the show on the final day with a round of three-under 69 to triumph by two shots at the PGTI’s season-ending Tour Championship, a ₹3 crore event, played at the Beldih and Golmuri Golf Courses in Jamshedpur.

Gurugram’s Manu Gandas took tied sixth place at the season’s showpiece event to emerge champion in the 2022 TATA Steel PGTI Rankings (Order of Merit).

Chikkarangappa (66-71-62-69) totalled 20-under 268 for the week. It was the 29-year-old golfer’s 15th title on the PGTI and overall 16th professional win.

The trio of international star Shiv Kapur (64-69-70-67), Delhi’s Shamim Khan (71-67-67-65) and Gurugram’s Veer Ahlawat (67-71-67-65) claimed tied second place at 18-under 270.

Manu Gandas (66-68-68-70) of Gurugram took the coveted No. 1 spot in the TATA Steel PGTI Rankings (Order of Merit) after finishing tied sixth at 16-under 272 at the Tour Championship this week.

Gandas closed the 2022 season with record earnings of ₹88,50,688, the highest ever for a PGTI season, to finish number one in the money list by a fair distance. He broke the previous record for the season’s earnings of ₹66,27,650 set by Rashid Khan in 2019.

Gandas had earlier set another PGTI record by winning six titles during the season. Gandas, who had turned pro back in 2015, posted a total of 13 top-10s in the year.

Throughout the event’s four rounds, one-half of the field played the first nine holes at Golmuri Golf Course and the second nine at Beldih Golf Course, while the other half played Beldih first, followed by Golmuri. The par for the round was 72. The leading groups started at Golmuri and finished at Beldih.

Chikkarangappa, the overnight leader by one shot, was in control for most of the day as he put together five birdies in exchange for a bogey over the first 13 holes thanks to his exceptional iron play and wedge shots.

His lead came under threat for a brief phase of play when he dropped a bogey on the 14th and Khalin Joshi made a charge with four birdies between the 12th and the 16th to get within one shot of the former.

Joshi finally slipped out of contention with a bogey and double-bogey on the last two holes to finish tied for sixth as Chikka marched to his first title in Jamshedpur after having finished runner-up in the city twice before.

“I had things under control for most of the day, but when I saw the leaderboard after the 16th and realised Khalin was just one behind me, I was a little surprised. But then I just played my game, found the fairways, went for the pins, and made the crucial par putts. Khalin’s bogey on the 17th gave me some breathing space,” the 29-year-old said.

“My driving and iron-play were great through the week. I also putted well, as I changed my putter this week after struggling on the greens last week in Kolkata. I went back to a putter that I had played with for a long time, and as a result, made some clutch putts like on the 17th today,” he said.

Talking about his performance in the tournament, Chikkarangappa said, “I meditate a lot so that helps me keep my calm in pressure situations on the golf course. It helps me focus and keep the distractions away.”

Talking about an eventful year, that he had endured, Chikkarangappa, said, “It’s been a tough year for me as I lost my mother earlier this year. I wasn’t enjoying my golf. But I managed to stay the course, as my mother always wanted me to play golf. I dedicate this win to her.

Chikkarangappa is now ranked joint second in the number of wins (15) on the PGTI along with Shamim Khan. Mukesh Kumar leads the list with 20 wins.

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