Rookie S Chikkarangappa of Bangalore upstaged pre-tournament favourite Rashid Khan of Delhi in a playoff to bag his maiden professional title at the CG Open at the Bombay Presidency Golf Club on Saturday.
It was a day of twists and turns as Rashid Khan (64-64-66-70) maintained his overnight three-shot lead till the eighth hole. Both he and Chikkarangappa (64-65-68-67) made two birdies and a bogey each on the first eight holes.
The tide however, turned over the next five holes. Rashid dropped bogeys on the ninth, 10th and 13th as a result of a few missed putts and a poor tee shot, while Chikkarangappa sank a 17-feet birdie putt on the 12th, thereby going ahead by one shot on the 13th.
Chikkarangappa stayed ahead by one till the 17th after both he and Rashid made birdies on the 16th. Rashid however, came back in the contest with a birdie on the 18th, while Chikkarangappa missed an up and down for birdie from the bunker wall on the 18th.
The two golfers then headed for a playoff having ended matching totals of 16-under-264 at the end of 72 holes.
The 20-year-old Chikka, who hails from the Eagleton Golf Resort near Bangalore, sealed the deal on the first playoff hole against 22-year-old Rashid, who lost a playoff at the CG Open for the second year in succession. Chikka’s earned a winner’s cheque of Rs 16,16,500.