Nov 25, 2018: Thomas Pieters and Thomas Detry lifted the first title for Belgium after cruising to a three-shot victory while Korea emerged as the best-placed Asian team in tied-sixth position at the ISPS HANDA Melbourne World Cup of Golf on Sunday. Anirban Lahiri and Gaganjeet Bhullar of Team India nailed five birdies against three bogeys for their closing round of 70.
Team India finished at T10 after scoring final round two-under-par 70 with 12-under-par 276 total.
Childhood friends Pieters and Detry, who started the day with a five-shot advantage, continued their formidable partnership as they closed with a four-under-par 68 in the final round foursomes to cap a winning total of 23-under-par 265 at The Metropolitan Golf Club.
The talented duo fended off fast-charging Marc Leishman and Cameron Smith of host nation Australia, who carded a second straight 65 to share second place with Mexicans Abraham Ancer and Roberto Diaz, who fired three birdies in their closing five holes for a commendable 66.
Korean talents Byeonghun An and Siwoo Kim settled six shots back of Team Belgium following a battling 70 while India’s Anirban Lahiri and Gaganjeet Bhullar matched the day’s efforts of Team Korea to settle for a share of 10th place at the prestigious US$7 million event.
Team China’s Li Haotong and Wu Ashun closed with a 67 to take 13th place on 277 while Thai duo Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Prom Meesawat marked their best round of the week with a 66 to finish a further shot back in tied-14th.
Did you know?
- Anirban Bhullar and Gaganjeet Bhullar hold a combined total of 16 victories on the Asian Tour, which includes three co-sanctioned wins on the European Tour.
- Lahiri, now a regular player on the PGA Tour, is a two-time International team member of the Presidents Cup. He is also the Asian Tour Order of Merit champion in 2015.
- Lahiri, 31, and Bhullar, 30, have represented India together in numerous team competitions since their amateur days. They featured in the Eisenhower Cup, Nomura Cup and Asian Games, delivering a team silver in 2006, before venturing almost at the same time into the play-for-pay ranks where they also represented Team Asia in the inaugural EurAsia Cup in 2013.
- Arjun Atwal and Jyoti Randhawa’s ninth-place finish in Portugal in 2005 remains India’s best result in the prestigious event.
Gaganjeet Bhullar (Ind)
Anirban’s our star man today, he was full of energy. I mean, I was, too, I thought so, but he woke me up on the sixth hole and I think before that I was kind of lazy, a lot of lazy swings. But thanks to Anirban, he was the one who was helping the scores.
Other than that, I think pretty disappointed with our finish although things started to get better on the back nine. I had a few good shots and Anirban, of course, holed a lot of good putts.
It was just towards the end there that we were expecting a few more birdies. I mean, it happens in this kind of format, it’s not easy.
Anirban Lahiri (Ind)
If I were to sum it up, it’s been a bad weekend. I think we played really well Thursday, Friday without a doubt, a lot of positives there. Yesterday really was the day that both of us played quite poorly, and yesterday was the day that we kind of got ourselves out of contention. The effort was there.
Today we both came out and we wanted to go low. The golf course is set up for scoring, quite different from Friday. But sometimes in foursomes, you know, if you’re not both on top of your A?game, you’re not going to shoot those really low scores.
I think we both really enjoyed ourselves. We gelled together really well. We were talking about it, it’s been maybe four or five years since the Eurasia Cup that we teamed last time, so it was a good reunion. I think we enjoyed ourselves.
Definitely feel like we let it get away from us on the weekend. We should have at least been in there with an outside chance today and we weren’t, so that’s where the disappointment is.
I’m going to go home for a couple of weeks and I’ll play the Indonesian Masters. I’m looking forward to, you know, coming back and playing on the Asian Tour. It’s been a long time. That will be my last event of the year.