May 31, 2017: There was no cheer for Indian golfers in their pursuit of a spot in the US Open. SSP Chawrasia, Jeev Milkha Singh and Shiv Kapur tried their best only to come up short in the sectional qualifiers at the Walton Heath Golf Club.
The top 15 men in the US Open qualifier were assured a trip to Erin Hills for the US Open in June. The tournament will be played in the week of 12th June in Erin, Wisconsin. A total of 111 golfers were at Walton Heath in the UK trying to gain entry to the 117th edition of the US Open.
The U.S. Open Qualifier is an event consisting 36-holes played on a single day. Chawrasia began the day with a see saw battle against the course, alternating between birdies and bogeys. He struck five birdies and six bogeys for a first round score of 73.
Bogeys on the first and ninth saw Chawrasia surrender any real chance at qualifying. But he showed good spirit to complete the task at hand. Chawrasia fired two birdies and kept it clean through the final nine holes for an even par 72.
Chawrasia was ten adrift of the qualifying mark, which fell at 135. The last spot for the U.S. Open went to Australian Wade Ormsby, who finished the two rounds with a score of 9 under par.
Shiv Kapur started the day well, carding a two under score of 70 over the first 18 holes. He was only four off the pace at the front, but had to withdraw from the event, killing any hopes of his participation in the US Open.
Jeev was chasing a sixth appearance in the US Open, but he was a disappointed man too. Jeev has been working remarkably hard to work his way back to the top of his game. So it must have broke his heart to have scored a 75 in the first round of the qualifier.
Aaron Rai was the star of the show, firing a brilliant 14 under score of 130 over the 36 holes. Haotong Li was equally impressive, finishing in second place, just one stroke behind the leader.
The qualifier at the Walton Health Golf Club, in England saw three aces, one each by David Boote, Andrew Johnston and Dimitri Papadatos.
Boote had it on hole No.6 of the Old Course, Johnston did the same on hole No.2 of the New Course, in the morning session. Papadatos achieved it in the afternoon session at the tee No.7 of the Old Course.
Among the three, only Andrew Johnston earned qualification. Beef fired 66 and 68 to work his way into the US Open.
The 15 players heading to the U.S. Open are Aaron Rai, Haotong Li, Alexander Levy, Richie Ramsay, Oliver Bekker, Joel Stalter, Bradley Dredge, Eddie Pepperell, Brandon Stone, George Coetzee, Andrew Johnston, Paul Dunne, Matt Wallace, Thomas Aiken and Wade Ormsby.