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Pune's Sachin qualifies for Nationals Finals of MercedesTrophy

04 Jan 2018, 16:54 IST

Pune, Jan 4 (PTI) Sachin Gangal earned the distinction of becoming the first golfer to qualify for the National Final of the 18th MercedesTrophy, here today.

Playing on day one of the opening leg of the tournament at the Oxford Golf Resort here, Sachin carded a Nett. score of 70.6 to finish in top spot.

Day two will determine the second and final qualifier from the city. Pune will also host the National Finals at the same venue between April 4 and 6.

"It feels fantastic. I have been trying this for the last two years. This is a unique format the Double Peoria. In fact, last two years I played even better but this year I got lucky," Sachin said.

The best Gross Winner of the day was Shishir Donde with a score of 80, while Nachiket Yeole won the Ballantine's Long Drive Challenge with a mammoth drive of 235 yards.

Rajesh Kailat won the Mercedes-Benz Closest to Pin contest on the Par 3 14th hole landing the ball 11ft from the pin.

In the Mercedes Benz Closest to Pin in Two Shots played at the Par Four 10th hole, Saket Batra emerged triumphant, landing the ball 29ft from the pin.

The Mercedes-Benz Straightest Drive contest, played on hole two, was won by Amarsinh Parmar, who landed his drive on the straight line.

The format of play was Double Peoria. This unique format of adjusting handicaps of players levels the playing field enabling golfers to have a greater chance of qualifying for the National Finals.

The opening day saw close to 100 golfers participate. This year's MercedesTrophy will host 27 days of golfing across 12 Indian cities.

The MercedesTrophy will travel to 11 more cities Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Coimbatore, Kolkata, Chennai, Chandigarh, Gurgaon, Noida and Jaipur.

Forty winners will be selected from the qualifiers for the National Finals. The qualifiers end on March 11, 2018 in Jaipur.

Three winners of the National Finals will then compete against those from tournaments played in 60 countries all over the world in the 29th MercedesTrophy World Final to be held in Stuttgart, Germany

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