Kolkata: Gurbani Singh delivered the knockout punch on Aditi Ashok, as she eliminated the defending champion and moved into the final of the Usha All India Ladies Matchplay Championships at the Tollygunge on Saturday. In a clash that was billed as the ‘Final before final’,Gurbani rallied on the back nine and won 3&2 and it also sealed the Order of Merit for her.
In the other semi-final, Millie Saroha was beaten by the less fancied Gursimar Badwal 3&2.
Gurbani started well and won the opening hole, but Aditi hit back winning the fourth and fifth and then extended her lead to two-up. But a double bogey on the ninth reduced the lead to 1-up at the turn. The match was level when Aditi missed a two-foot par putt on 11th. Gurbani quickly went into the lead after that and then added two more and went three-up on the 15th. Aditi needing to win the remaining three holes managed only to halve the 16thand crashed out.
In the second semi-final, Millie won the first hole and maintained the lead till the 5th where Millie’s bogey allowed Gursimar to level match. But after that Gursimar was consistent and ran up a three-up lead to close the match 3&2.
The 36-hole final will be played with the first 18 in the morning and the next 18 in the afternoon.
Gurbani Singh will start as the favourite, but the match should be well-fought as Gursimar has shown herself to be very tenacious.
The road to final:
Pre-quarters: beat Ankita Kedalya 3&1
Quarters: beat Ridhima Dilawari 2&1
Semi-finals: beat Aditi Ashok 3&2
Pre-quarters: beat Vrishali Sinha 3&2
Quarters: beat Jaipreet Ghumman 7&6
Semi-finals: beat Millie Saroha 3&2
By Indian Sports News Network