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Surya Prakash scores huge upset

February 11, 2004 19:20 IST
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Surya Prakash, the standard 10th student of La Martiniere, caused the biggest upset in the second round of the Eveready 103rd All-India Amateur Golf Championship, the second oldest golf tournament in the world after the British Open, at the par-72 Royal Calcutta Golf Club, on Wednesday.

The 15-year-old beat India's No 2 amateur and the sixth seed beat Harinder Gupta of Chandigarh by three holes with two to play.

Among other upsets, 32-year-old L Selvadurai of ONGC beat the 11th seed Waqas Ahmed of Pakistan 2-up, S Karthikeya showed the exit door to No 14 Stuart Murray of Hong Kong 1-up, Coimbatore's Joseph Chakola got the better of 17th seed Mohd Milon Ahmed of Bangladesh on the 22nd hole, Delhi's Anirudh Goyal beat No 22 K Prabagaran of Sri Lanka 2-up and Kolkata's Akshay Butta beat No 24 Amarapadama of Sri Lanka by two holes.

The top five seeds -- Manav Das (India), Norman Beggs (South Africa), BG Lalithakumara (Sri Lanka), James Smith (England) and Matthew Kent (SA) -- made it to the third round.

Surya, who coaches under renowned city pro Indrajit Bhalotia and his father Deepak, could never have imagined the result.

"Apart from Indrajit sir, no one thought that I would beat him. I just wanted to play my own game and hang on there. He is such a good player, but I did not want to lose without fighting. As it happened, he did not have a very good day," said the three-handicapper Surya, who virtually sealed the issue when he replied to Harinder's birdie on the 15th with an eagle.

Top seed and defending champion Das, who hails from the small army cantonment town of Ambala, looked to be in a spot of bother against unseeded Rajeev Kumar of Delhi when he was two-down at the turn. But he was solid on the back nine, and two birdies helped him close the contest on the 16th hole. The No 1 amateur of the country, an employee of Oil India, said: "The first four holes were a disaster. I could not do anything right. Thereafter, I started hitting the ball okay, but my putting was bad. I made a three-putt bogey and missed several short putts. Hopefully, I will get better as the tournament progresses."

Important results (Second round – Seedings in prefix and country in parenthesis): 1-Manav Das bt Rajeev Kumar 3&2; Joseph Chakola bt 17-Mohd Milon Ahmed (B'desh) 22nd hole; 9-Vikrant Chopra bt Aparup Saikia 4&3; Akshay Butta bt 24-Amarpadama (SL) 2-up; 8-Paul O'Hara (Sco) bt Maj SK Lakra 2&1; 5-Matthew Kent (SA) bt Jaskirat Dullet 3&2; L Selvadurai bt 11-Waqas Ahmed (Pak) 2-up; Girish Virk bt HS Kang 1-up; S Karthikeya bt 14-Stuart Murray (HK) 1-up; Anirudh Goyal bt 22-K Prabagaran (SL) 2-up; Balwinder Mattu bt Mohd Shakur Hussain (B'desh) 6&5; Surya Prakash bt 6-Harinder Gupta 3&2; 7-Shahid Javed Khan (Pak) bt JS Gill 3&2; 4-James Smith (Eng) bt Sanjoy Chowdhury 6&4; 15-Simarjeet Singh bt Mayukh Mitra 3&2; 2-Norman Beggs (SA) bt Lakshman Singh 2&1

THURSDAY: Third round of Eveready 103rd All-India Amateur Golf Championship. Starting 7:30 am at the Royal Calcutta Golf Club.

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