Bengaluru, India: S. Chikka capped an emotional week by winning the inaugural US$70,000 TAKE Solutions India Masters with a final round five-under-par 67.
The Indian dedicated his dramatic Asian Development Tour (ADT) victory, which he won with a four-day total of 18-under-par 270, to his late grandfather who passed away last week.
Overnight leader Abhishek Jha of India surrendered a six-shot lead and had to settle for second place after he closed with his week’s highest score of three-over 75 at the Eagleton Golf Resort.
Swede Nils Floren took third place by carding a 67 for a 274 total while Ireland’s Niall Turner and Indian C. Muniyappa tied for fourth on 275 at the first ADT event in India.
Victory was especially sweet for 21-year-old Chikka following the loss of his grandfather. It took the sound advice from his family to ease the emotional burden and put him in the right frame of mind to compete.
“This win is for my grandfather. I could not help but look up to the skies as I’m sure he was watching over me from above. When I came back to Bangalore this week [from Macau], my mother and grandmother spoke to me and asked me to focus on my game.
“They also told me that that is what my grandfather would’ve liked me to do had he been around. Their words really inspired me and I slowly got my confidence back,” said Chikk
“I took my chances well and I was really determined to close the gap on Jha as I was six shots behind. I put the pressure on him especially on the home stretch and it paid off. With this win on the ADT, I’m looking for better things to come as I will continue to develop as a player and hopefully get more wins!” said Chikka.
Jha was disappointed to let slip a commanding lead. “I’m at a loss for words and I guess the nerves got the better of me. I didn’t play well at all today and just couldn’t cope with the final day pressure. This is a lesson learnt and hopefully I’ll emerge stronger,” he said.