21 October 2018: The future of Indian golf shone brightly on a sunny day at the DLF Golf & Country Club in Gurugram. A determined Sifat Sagoo made the most of her card in the Hero Women’s Indian Open with a closing 70 to take the Low Amateur award. The best amateur is presented with a silver salver each year. Sagoo got the better of last year’s winner Pranavi Urs, who nearly defended her crown with a 71 in the final round.
In the end, Sifat finished in T33 with an overall score of six over 294. Her effort betters the result from last year too, when Pranavi was T61 at 10-over 226 when the event was played over three rounds.
Pranavi also improved her showing this year, closing out at 7-over 295 to finish in T37 with Astha Madan and Vani Kapoor.
Sifat will look back on her performance this week with great satisfaction. Except for a battling 79 in the second round, she turned in a brilliant effort to seal victory by a one stroke margin.
“I am really happy with the way I played this week,” said a delighted Sifat. “The Asian Games experience has come in handy and I came here feeling confident. Playing with the international golfers, I could also learn a lot this week.
“I will look forward to continue playing well and learn as I go. The result this week gives me lot of confidence and finishing as the low amateur means a lot to me.”
Pranavi showed great character, working her way back from an early setback. She made double bogeys on the first two holes, but did not let that deter her from shooting an under par round to sign off from the tournament.
“It has been a good week but this could have been better if I could cut out on the mistakes. Anytime you make 17 birdies is a good place to be,” said a disappointed Pranavi.
“I am only 15, so will continue to grow as a golfer and look forward to turn professional in three years time. I look up to Aditi Ashok and aspire to follow in her foot steps.”
Sifat shot five birdies in her final round 70, which included a hat-trick of bogeys from the 6th hole. Pranavi carded six birdies as she fought back bravely from conceding four strokes on the first two holes.
In the hands of these young golfers, Indian golf has a bright future and their stories of valour are going to keep golf fans enthralled for many years to come.