Tour Report: Final round at the IndianOil SERVO Masters
Digboi, Assam, November 19, 2016: Delhi’s Honey Baisoya made it back-to-back wins on the PGTI after marching to a comfortable nine-stroke triumph at the IndianOil Servo Masters Golf 2016 at the Digboi Golf Links on Saturday.
Baisoya posted a clinical two-under-70 in the final round to end up with a winning tournament total of 20-under-268. The 20-year-old, who won in Shillong last week, thus swept the north-eastern leg of PGTI’s 2016 season.
Delhi’s Kapil Kumar, Honey’s cousin, was a distant runner-up at the Rs. 35 lakh event after his last round of one-over-73 took his tournament tally to 11-under-277.
Honey Baisoya (67-67-64-70), the overnight leader by six shots, was in total control in the fourth round despite his early bogeys on the first and fourth. The birdie from 15 feet on the seventh set the stage for Honey’s win. An aggressive drive on the 12th earned him another shot before his decisive hat-trick of birdies on the 14th, 15th and 16th.
Baisoya birdied the 14th after making eagles on it in the first three rounds. He was thus seven-under for the week on his favourite hole. He finally closed the tournament with a bogey on the 18th to win by nine shots.
Honey bagged the winner’s cheque worth Rs. 5,25,000 and as a result moved up from fifth place to second position in the Rolex Ranking. His earnings for the season stand at Rs. 23,90,145. Bengaluru’s Chikkarangappa S continues to lead the rankings with season’s earnings of Rs. 24,06,640.
Honey said, “It’s terrific to win two events in two weeks. This phase is all the more special because I’ve finally achieved success after struggling for the first three years after turning professional. It’s not only the wins but also the good scores that I’ve been shooting for the past few weeks that have boosted my confidence.
“I began the day with a little bit of pressure due to the expectation of winning. But after a poor front-nine, I got my game back on track with a very good birdie on the 12th which is a tough hole. I just kept the intensity going from there on with three straight birdies from the 14th to the 16th.
“Having moved up to second place in the rankings, I now want to perform even better in the last three events of the season.”
Baisoya has now joined Ashok Kumar as the only other player to win his first two titles on the PGTI in consecutive events. The other golfers who have back-to-back wins on the PGTI (but not their first two wins) are Gaganjeet Bhullar, Shamim Khan, Anirban Lahiri and Mithun Perera.
The 24-year-old Kapil Kumar (66-69-69-73) couldn’t take advantage of cousin Honey’s early errors as he made three birdies and three bogeys on the front-nine to make the turn at even-par. Kapil, who was striking it well on Saturday, added a lone birdie on the back-nine at the expense of two bogeys to end up with a 73.
Kapil, still looking for his maiden win, said, “It’s a great result for me. I’ve been playing well but Honey has been in top form so it wasn’t easy catching up with him today. I’ll take a lot of positives from this performance as it’s my best finish so far.”
Bengaluru’s Udayan Mane shot a 69 in round four to take third place at seven-under-281. Mukesh Kumar (71) of Mhow was a further stroke back in fourth place.
Last year’s champion Shankar Das of Kolkata grabbed a share of fifth place along with Gurgaon’s Manu Gandas and Jamshedpur’s Karan Taunk at four-under-284.
Leading scores after Round 4 (72 holes):
268: Honey Baisoya (67-67-64-70)
277: Kapil Kumar (66-69-69-73)
281: Udayan Mane (67-72-73-69)
282: Mukesh Kumar (69-69-73-71)