Oct 22, 2016: As his boys burn the grass on different parts of Asia, Vijay Divecha must be a content man. The golfing guru from Bengaluru has been relishing a wave of joy over the past few weeks, with his disciples Anirban Lahiri and S Chikkarangappa scorching golf courses with their performances. The latter scored his second victory of the season, winning the TAKE Open Golf Championship today while Anirban Lahiri seems set to clinch his maiden victory on the PGA TOUR this Sunday.
Anirban Lahiri was sitting on a comfortable four shot cushion in Malaysia, where he is at the top of the leaderboard in the CIMB Classic. The 83rd ranked Indian has been in spectacular form since his return to the circuit after taking a few weeks off to nurse a shoulder injury.
The top ranked Indian threatened to ambush the Macao Open title, before conceding victory to Pavit Tangkamolprasert on the first hole of playoff. Five strokes off the pace at one point on Sunday, Anirban Lahiri produced nine birdies over the final eleven holes, including seven in a row through the 18th to force a sensational playoff in Macao.
Anirban Lahiri reached Kuala Lumpur hunting for victory and hasn’t put a step wrong over the past three days. Scores of 66-66-65 have given him a firm grip over the lead, a four stroke advantage over Justin Thomas and Russell Knox. Indian golf will waited with bated breath on Sunday, in anticipation of another good round from the poster boy of Indian golf.
Meanwhile, Chikkarangappa has also been making a mark of his own. He started the final round in Macao with a share of the lead, but it wasn’t humanly possible to keep pace with his good friend and rival, Anirban Lahiri. Chikkarangappa had settled for T3 there, for his best finish on the Asian Tour. He is currently lying 30th on the Asian Tour Order of Merit.
On the PGTI TOUR, Chikkarangappa has finished third or better in his last four appearances. Since August, when the second phase of the Tour began, Chikkarangappa has been in sizzling form taking titles in the Eagleburg Masters and now the Take Open. The 15 lakh first prize cheque catapulted him to the top of the list with overall earnings of Rs. 2,406,640
Chikkarangappa hero worships Anirban as a brother and friend and it appears that the latter’s heroics on the international circuit are fueling Chikkarangappa to new heights. As they continue to sizzle with their exploits, Vijay Divecha can beam with pride having been at the very roots of their flourishing international careers.