Top pro Shrestha claims 41st career title

Kathmandu, February 9

Nepal No 1 pro Shivaram Shrestha claimed the 41st career title after he won the Golfer Pilots NPGA Classic here at the Gokarna Golf Club today.

Shrestha carded one-under 71 in the final round to post the 54-hole total of eight-under 200 in the sixth event under the Surya Nepal Golf Tour 2018-19. Shrestha had played three-under 65 and four-under 64 respectively in the first two rounds at the Royal Nepal Golf Club.

Shrestha, who had five-stroke cushion, shot one-over 37 before taking the turn and carded two-under 34 on the back nine. He faced bogeys on the second, fifth and sixth against two birdies on the third and seventh holes. Shrestha carded birdies on the 12th and 13th in the bogey-free back nine.

Shrestha registered a five-wicket victory over Bhuwan Nagarkoti, who also carded one-under 71 today, to win the fifth event of the season. Nagarkoti is the winner of another tournament. Shrestha received Rs 55,000, while Nagarkoti, who finished runner-up for the second event in a row with the score of three-under 205, earned Rs 37,000.

Nagarkoti, who had also finished runner-up behind Shrestha in the Surya Nepal NPGA Match Play last month, carded two-under 34 on the front nine to reduce the deficit to two strokes. But he went on to play one-over 37 on the back nine. Nagarkoti carded birdies on the third, fourth and seventh holes and in between faced a bogey on the fifth. After taking the turn, Nagarkoti carded a birdie on the 12th but faced bogeys on the 14th and 16th holes.

Rame Magar (74) finished third at one-over 209 and he earned Rs 25,000. Magar shot one-over 37 on each half. He dropped shots on the second, fourth and eighth holes against birdies on the third and eighth holes. After taking the turn, Magar faced a triple bogey on the 11th before recovering with birdies on the 13th and 16th holes.

Jayaram Shrestha (72) came fourth at five-over 213 to receive Rs 22,000, while three pros — Dhana Bahadur Thapa, Sanjay Lama and Rabi Khadka — were tied for fifth at six-over 214. Four pros — Bhuwan Kumar Rokka, Surya Prasad Sharma and Kumar Karki and Bal Bhadara Rai — shared eighth position at eight-over 216.

In amateur section, Binod Tamang registered a three-stroke victory over Subash Ghising to win the title. Tamang posted the score of 12-over 220 after he played six-over 78 in the final round. Ghising faltered 10-over 82 in the final round to slip to second with the score of 223.

Meanwhile, golf enthusiast Bijay Awale rewarded lady golfer Pratima Sherpa, who had a Hole-in-One on the second day at the RNGC course, with a gift hamper worth Rs 10,000.

A total of 31 pros and 13 amateur players took part in the 54-hole tournament sponsored by pilot-cum-golfers Capt Rabindra Purush Dhakal, Capt Deepak Thapaliya and Capt Vijay Pratap Singh. Rara Instant Noodles, BB Airways, Kia Motors, Air Arabia, Himalayan Bank and Sherpa Brewery were the co-sponsors of the event.

Pilot-cum-golfers Capt Rabindra Purush Dhakal, Capt Deepak Thapaliya and Capt Vijay Pratap Singh, Nepal PGA President Rabindra Man Shrestha and Advisor Ghana Shyam Thapa handed over the prizes to the winners. The tournament will end on Saturday following the Pro-Am event.