New Delhi, India: Indian Khalin Joshi produced a dramatic finish with four birdies in his closing five holes to sign for a four-under-par 68 and clinch his maiden Asian Tour title by one shot at the US$400,000 Panasonic Open India.
Despite dropping two bogeys in his opening three holes, the 26-year-old Joshi withstood stifling pressure to bounce back with six birdies, including a seven-footer on the last to hold off the challenge of Bangladeshi Siddikur Rahman, at the Delhi Golf Club.
Joshi, who held a share of the overnight lead thanks to a third-round 64, matched the lowest winning score for the tournament with his four-day total of 17-under-par 271 in the event which was celebrating its eighth edition on the Asian Tour.
Joshi said: “It’s a huge monkey off my back. I think I played really well. I kept my nerves and played really solid coming in. The last four holes were key for me. All night I was thinking about the 16th hole tee shot because that tee shot has haunted me for a while now.
“Winning my first Asian Tour event here means the world to me. Winning anywhere would have been great, but winning at Delhi Golf club is unbelievable. All the spectators were very supportive. I have a bunch of friends over here. Hopefully I gave them a good show.
“I have four big weeks coming up after this. I am going to work on my game and come back fresh for Hong Kong.”
Delhi expert Siddikur fell short in his title bid after missing a 10-foot birdie putt on the last to settle for a closing 69. He ended the week in second place on his own to mark his best result so far this season.
Young Thai talent Suradit Yongcharoenchai and Ajeetesh Sandhu of India shared third place on 274 following respective rounds of 69 and 70 while Aman Raj, also of India, recorded his career-best result on the Asian Tour after carding a 69 to end a further shot back in fifth.
Joshi took home a cheque for US$72,000 as he became the fifth Indian to win on the Asian Tour this season. He is also the 13th player to win for the first time on the Asian Tour in 2018.
The Panasonic Open India is sanctioned by the Asian Tour and Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) and is the second leg of the 2018/19 Panasonic Swing, which is an aggregate points race that spans five events – in Thailand, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Japan.
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