Oct 05, 2018: In the final round, Tvesa Malik played a flawless second nine on the front side of the Gary Player layout at the DLF Golf and Country Club. She had two birdies, the first on the 17th and another on eighth, the penultimate hole, besides one bogey on the 14th to win the 15th Leg of the Hero Women’s Pro Golf Tour. The win also makes Tvesa one of the main Indian challengers for the Hero Women’s Indian Open to be held at the same course in two weeks time.
Tvesa played extremely steady golf in the crucial stages for the second time in three days. The win also made her only the second player this season to win three titles on the Hero WPGT.
With all the players starting from the tenth tee this week, Tvesa held a three-shot lead over Gaurika Bishnoi and was four ahead of amateur Diksha Dagar when they came to the second nine. At the start of the second nine, it was Smriti Mehra who was her closest rival, just one shot behind.
Tvesa had one birdie and eight pars for 35 while Smriti had a roller-coaster of a stretch with two birdies, three bogeys and a double bogey for a 39. Gaurika and Diksha went one better than Tvesa, but their 34s were not enough to bridge the gap Tvesa had opened up.
Tvesa, who had already won twice in the fourth and 12th legs, is also leading the Hero Order of Merit. She shot 1-under 71, just as she did on the first day, to make up for her second day 76. She finished the week at 2-over 218 and won by two shots over Gaurika, who nevertheless returned the day’s best card of 2-under 70 and totaled 4-over 220.
Tvesa has had an exceptional season so far with three wins and five second place finishes. On four other occasions she has been third, which means she has been in the Top-3 no less than 12 times in 15 starts. Her worst finish has been eighth place in the eighth leg.
Her third win also helped her extend her lead at the top of the Hero Order of Merit.
Tvesa, who was clearly disappointed at dropping a lot of shots on the second day when she carded 76, tightened her game and minimized the errors. It also showed how well she has adjusted to the course which augurs well for the remainder of the season.
Tvesa and Gaurika occupied the top two spots, while amateur Diksha Dagar continued to show great promise as she shot 1-under 71, one of the three under-par rounds on the final day. Diksha totaled 5-over 221 and finished third.
Ridhima Dilawari, who had led after 36 holes and stood on the brink of a great landmark of winning both as an amateur and a professional in the same season, faltered on the final day. She dropped three double bogeys and two bogeys against three birdies in her disappointing 77 that saw her slip from the top to Tied-4th.
Smriti Mehra bounced back from her second round 77 to card 74, with five birdies. She tied for fourth place.
Vani Kapoor, who was T-6th at the Hero Women’s Indian Open at this very course last year, had a somewhat disappointing week with rounds of 75, 75 and 74. She was sole sixth.
Millie Saroha (77) was seventh and Neha Tripathi continued her up-and-down journey with a 78 after 79-72 in the first two rounds. Neha ended eighth. Siddhi Kapoor (74) and Afshan Fatima (76) were T-9th and rounded off the Top-10.