Manav Das accepted the 'Royal Challenge' posed by Aditya Singh going on to beat the latter in a play-off to win the Royal Challenge South title at the par-70, Bangalore Golf Club.
Aditya, in his rookie season on the Royal Challenge Indian Golf Tour, missed a two feet putt to double bogey the 18th hole and bring about the playoff. The two golfers were tied at a score of four-over 284 apiece.
Opening round leader Amardip Sinh Malik finished third at 285, while the trio of Gaganjit Bhullar, Joseph Chakola and Gagan Verma finished tied for fourth place at 287.
If Manav Das could not believe his eyes when his opponent failed to tap the two-footer in, Aditya was completely distraught. The play-off on the par-4 339 yard first hole, teed off with Manav finding the heart of the fairway.
Aditya actually out-drove his opponent by two yards. Manav went on to nail his approach shot to six feet from the pin. The pressure must have got to the youngster whose misdirected approach shot was almost out-of-bounds.
Aditya chipped to ten feet from the pin and went on to two-putt for bogey, but Manav, despite failing to birdie the hole, won with a par. Right from the start today, Manav Das had a simple approach. As was the case over the past three days, he was looking at taking things hole by hole.
The Oil India employee birdied the fourth and eighth but dropped shots on the seventh and ninth on his outward journey. Bogeys on the 13th and 15th were rectified to an extent by a birdie on the16th where he reduced the deficit to three strokes.
When Aditya dropped a shot on the 17th, Manav strongly believed that if he birdied the 18th he could put pressure on the
When Aditya's tee shot found the trees on the right, Manav was convinced he stood a chance, but even he could not have foretold what went on to happen.
"It was very unfortunate for Aditya but he is young and has a bright future ahead," he said. "Personally, it feels great to win from the position I was in," smiled the winner who shot a round of 71 today.
Life can be cruel. Aditya Singh only 17 years of age learnt that bitter lesson today and how!
The overnight leader was cruising all through the day and as far ahead as the 17th hole, enjoyed a three stroke lead. On the
17th, he missed a two feet putt. This was his undoing. Though still with a two stroke lead, the Delhi Golf Club player was haunted by his error on the previous green and went on to repeat the mistake and letting go of a golden opportunity to win a title in his Rookie year on the Royal Challenge Indian Golf Tour.
"I was also affected by the incident on the eighth hole".
On the hole in question, Aditya was subject to a Rules incident, which subsequently went in his favour. "I was really nervous on the 18th. I need to learn to handle pressure and plan to work on that aspect," he added.
Earlier in the day, Aditya dropped shots on the third, seventh, ninth and 17th, birdied the 16th and underwent the turmoil of the double on the final hole, for a card of 75.
SCORES (after 72 holes):
284 Manav Das(68,72,73,71), Aditya Singh(69,71,69,75); 285 Amardip Sinh Malik(67,74,72,72); 287 Gaganjeet Bhullar(74,70,74,69), Joseph Chakola(71,72,73,71), Gagan Verma (73,71,71,72); 289 Jaideep Patwardhan(71,74,73,71), AS Lehal(72,71,72,74); 290 Karanjit Singh(75,69,71,75); 291 Selvadurai(71,74,74,72); 292 Vikrant Chopra(71,75,73,73); 293 HS Kang(74,73,73,73), Vikram Rana(73,75,71,74); 294 Jasjeet Singh(73,74,75,72), Anitya Chand(72,73,74,75), Simarjeet Singh(71,74,72,77)