By a Staff Reporter
Kathmandu – Amateur Golfer Sadbhav Acharya became the youngest winner in the Surya Nepal Golf Tour after he won the Surya Nepal Challenge at the par-68 Royal Nepal Golf Club on Friday.
Sadbhav carded four-under 64 in the final round to post the winning total of three-under 269. He recorded a two-stroke victory over defending champion Bhuvan Nagarkoti in the sixth event under the Surya Nepal Golf Tour 2022-23.
Sadbhav claimed his first major title at the age of 16 years and 10 months, emulating the previous record held by fellow amateur golfer Subash Tamang, who had won the Surya Nepal Challenge at the age of 16 years and 11 months. Sadbhav had won the first amateur section beating Subash in the previous events, Surya Nepal Central Open at Gokarna Golf Club earlier this month.
Former top pro-Bhuvan carded an even-par 68 in the final round for a total score of one-under 271 and he finished first among pros winning the cheque of Rs 100,000. Rabi slipped to third at even-par 272 after he played three-over 71 and he received Rs 65,000.
Top amateur Subash Tamang came fourth overall and second in the amateur section with a total score of three over 275 after the carded even-par 68. Dinesh Prajapati played three-over 71 to finish fifth overall and third among pros with a score of five-over 277. He earned Rs 46,000.
Bhuwan Kumar Rokka (76) and Dhana Bahadur Thapa (70) shared the fourth position among pros at eight over 280 and they received Rs 36,000 each. Deepak Magar (72) and Jayram Shrestha (70) were tied for sixth at 10-over 282 and they earned Rs 28,500 apiece. Sanjay Lama was eighth at 283 after he played three-over 71 and he got Rs 24,000. Rame Magar (71) came ninth at 286 and Shivaram Poudel was 10th at 290.
Sadbhav was four strokes behind third-round leader Rabi Khadka and two shots behind Bhuvan going into the final round. He narrowed the gap carding two-under 32 on the front nine, while Bhuvan overtook Rabi after he carded 32 and the overnight leader Rabi played one-over 35. Sadbhav carded two-under 32 on the back nine, while Bhuvan and Rabi both two-over 36.
Sadbhav carded birdies on the second, fourth, and eighth holes, while he dropped a shot on the third hole. After taking the turn, Sadbhav faced a bogey on the 10th before carding birdies on the 13th, 16th, and 17th holes.
Bhuvan carded birdies on the first, third, and fifth holes before dropping a shot on the ninth. He then dropped shots on the 10th, 12th, 15th, and 18th holes against birdies on the 11th and 13th holes. Likewise, Rabi made a flying start with birdies on the first, second, and fourth holes but he faced a double bogey on the seventh and bogeys on the eighth and ninth holes. On the back nine, he dropped one shot each on the 12th and 15th holes and faced a double bogey on the final hole against birdies on the 10th and 16th holes.
A total of 37 golfers, 30 pros and seven amateurs, took part in the tournament organized by the Professional Golfers Association Nepal under the sponsorship of Surya Nepal Pvt Ltd. The tournament carried a cash purse of Rs 545,000. Surya Nepal Pvt Ltd Vice-President, Marketing, Dipra Lahiri, PGA Nepal President Rabindra Man Shrestha, Nepal Golf Association President Tashi Ghale and RNGC President Madhukar Yakthumba handed over prizes to the winners.