Noida: Veteran Smriti Mehra gave her younger rivals Sharmila Nicollet and Nalini Singh lesson in patience and grit as she came from behind to win her fourth title of the season at the 12th leg of the Hero Women’s Pro Golf tournament at Jaypee Greens.
It was an exciting and tense finish. Despite a late charge by Sharmila with a birdie and two pars in last three holes, Smriti held on with a birdie and three pars on last four holes to grab the title.
Smriti, starting the final day four behind leader Nalini Singh Siwach and three behind Sharmila Nicollet, made a sedate start with two pars and then had three birdies in next five holes to make it three-under at the seventh. Sharmila meanwhile started with an eagle-2 on first and had a bogey on sixth and birdie on seventh.
What opened the door for Smriti was Sharmila’s triple bogey on ninth. Smriti had three more birdies against two bogeys on back nine to end the day at 69 and a total of three-under 213. Sharmila, who had three birdies and an eagle against three bogeys and a triple bogey finished at 73 and two-under 214, losing the title by one shot. Sharmila's bogeys on 13th and 15th cost her dearly.
Nalini had an off-day as she went for five-over 77 and ended at one-over 217.
Mika Ikemura of Japan carded 76 and was fourth at 223, while Meghna Bal (74) was fifth at 229. Saaniya Sharma carded an even par 72 but finished at sixth place with 230.
Smriti Mehra extends her lead at the top of the Order of Merit with three more legs to go. She has now won four titles, the most by any this season and is now firmly on way to winning the Money title away from last year’s champion Sharmila.
The 12th leg of the Hero Women’s Tour was the first event at Jaypee Greens this season. The next event on the Tour will be the BT Pro-AM of Champions.
By Indian Sports News