Shrestha makes his mark in PGTI

Kathmandu, July 28:

Shiva Ram Shrestha finished 20th at the Professional Golfers Tour of India (PGTI) Qualifying School and earned a place for the 2007-08 Indian tour.

Shrestha carded two over 74 in the final round for a total of 19 over 307 that put him at the joint 20th position along with three other golfers — Raju James Joseph, Balvinder Singh Mattu and Arshpreet Thind.

Shiva Ram, who turned pro from the Thailand Open held on July 16, carded three over 75, six over 78 and eight over 80 in the first three rounds. Shiva Ram, who was undergoing training in Bangkok, joined six other Nepali golfers in the qualifying tournament at the Golden Greens Golf and Country Club in Gurgaon.

A total of 48 players — including nine foreigners — earned the full card and rights to play in more than 15 professional tournaments to be held under PGTI in the 2007-08 season.

Other Nepali players who

took part in the tournament but failed to qualify were Deepak Thapa Magar, Deepak Neupane, Sachin Bhattarai, Chuda Bahadur Bhandari, Sanjay Lama and Toran Shahi.

India’s Asian Games hero Anirban Lahiri won the tournament with a six-shot victory over Raj Randhawa. Lahiri, 20, finished with an even par 72 for the final tally of seven under 281. Randhawa came second with a fine round of three under 69 for a tally of one under 287 while Feroz Ali Mollah was third with an overall three over 291.