Shrestha confident of cementing Nepal No 1 status
Kathmandu, May 19
Shivaram Shrestha in Nepal No 1 professional golfer and he is at the summit since 2011.
Except for the second season of the Surya Nepal Golf Tour, Shrestha has never been challenged at the summit ever since the tour was launched in 2008.
He was unable to retain the No 1 status in 2009-10 after he got injured in bike accident and failed to win a single event in the whole season. He fell behind fellow RNGC pro Rabi Khadka in the Order of Merit that season.
Shrestha bounced back in the 2010-11 season by winning five events and has never looked back. He has taken the personal tally to 41 titles, including two he won before the start of the tour. Shrestha is runaway leader in the most wins list with Rabi Khadka following him with 12 titles.
But with the 2018-19 season coming to its end with the Surya Nepal Premier next week, the No 1 status Shrestha enjoyed for so long time is under threat.
Despite winning five events out of nine tournaments, Shrestha has not been able to seal the top spot in Order of Merit.
Going into the final event that carries a total purse of Rs 1.26 million, Shrestha is ahead of Bhuwan Nagarkoti by Rs 133,700.
The Gokarna Golf Club pro Nagarkoti can leapfrog Shrestha in the Order of Merit as the top two pros will earn Rs 230,000 and Rs 140,000 respectively. If Nagarkoti wins the tournament and Shrestha finishes third or worse, the Order of Merit will go out of RNGC for the first time in 11 years.
Shrestha was well aware of the situation and confident of defending the Surya Nepal Premier title and retaining the No 1 status.
“The No 1 status is not at stake as I don’t think I will fare that bad in the tournament,” said Shrestha. “The overall performance depends on putting as I have been facing some problems with that. If I can putt well, then no one can beat me,” he added.