Bilt Open 2012
October 13th 2012, New Delhi, India: Delhi’s Shamim Khan pulled off a dramatic playoff win against fellow Delhi professional Rashid Khan at the BILT Open 2012. The match was decided on the second playoff hole after both Shamim and Rashid ended the regulation 72 holes with identical totals of 14-under-274 at their home course, the Delhi Golf Club (DGC).
Shamim Khan (64-72-64-74), the overnight leader by four strokes, shot a resolute two-over-74 in round four that helped him take the match to a playoff. Shamim had a terrible start to the day as he pulled his tee shots to the left on the third and fourth holes. These errors resulted in a double-bogey on the third and a bogey on the fourth for Shamim. His accurate hitting earned him birdies on the eighth and 15th and resurrected his round. However, a three-putt on the 16th meant Shamim finished the round with a 74.
Rashid Khan (65-66-73-70), on the other hand, made a brave comeback to take the match to a playoff. Rashid’s final round of two-under-70 included four birdies and two bogeys. Rashid trailed Shamim by one stroke after the 17th hole but then made a crucial birdie on the 18th to draw level with Shamim.
The first playoff hole (18th hole) saw Rashid find the bushes on the right and then make a spectacular recovery with a 20-feet birdie putt. Shamim also birdied the first playoff hole.
Shamim’s experience prevailed on the second playoff hole (18th hole). After Rashid missed a 10-footer for birdie, Shamim knocked in an eight feet birdie putt to register his eighth professional win. This win also happened to be his third of the 2012 PGTI season and his first in a playoff out of four attempts. The 34-year-old has now climbed from third position to number one on the 2012 Rolex Rankings.
Shamim, who took home the winning cheque worth Rs. 16,16,500, said, “My hitting saved the day for me. I had a poor start but I kept hitting it straight after that. Rashid made a good comeback towards the end of the round but my experience saw me through in the playoff. There was no pressure on me after Rashid missed his birdie on the second playoff hole. I then focused on my line before converting my eight feet putt for victory. Importantly, it was a left to right putt which has been a problem area for me in recent months.
“This is my biggest win in terms of prize money earned and also my first win in a strokeplay event at the DGC. I have finally broken the barrier of winning in a playoff after three unsuccessful attempts in the past. It’s great to be back on top of the Rolex Rankings.”
Runner-up Rashid Khan, who continues to be placed second on the Rolex Rankings, said, “I recovered very well from some tough situations today. I took the tough decision of pulling out the driver on the 18th hole. That helped me take the match to a playoff. However, I could not take my chances in the playoff.”
Manav Jaini (69-71-68-71), another DGC-based professional, finished third at nine-under-279. His final round of 71 featured four birdies and three bogeys.
Mithun Perera of Sri Lanka and Faridabad’s Abhinav Lohan were a further stroke back in tied fourth place.
Indian star Jyoti Randhawa grabbed a share of ninth position at four-under-284.
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