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Shivaram clinches title

Surya Nepal Challenge

Kathmandu, January 14, 2017: Shivaram Shrestha lived up to his billing as top-ranked golfer by winning the Surya Nepal Challenge, the second event under Surya Nepal Golf Tour 2016-17, at the par-68 Royal Nepal Golf Club (RNGC) on Friday.

Nowhere near top of the leaderboard in first two rounds, the RNGC pro rose to the top in the third round and closed out the event in an intimidating fashion by finishing 10 strokes ahead of runner-up Bhuwan Nagarkoti of Gokarna Golf Club. The Nepal No 1 carded four-under 64 in the fourth and final round on Friday for a total card of eight-under 264. It was his 32nd pro title and gave him Rs 75,000 as cash reward.

Shivaram started the final round with two-stroke ahead of brother Jayaram and four better than Bhuwan. The top-ranked pro shot one-over 35 on the front nine but made an incredible improvement on the back nine where he carded five-under 29. His closest competitor Jayaram shot two-over 36 in the first nine holes to add to the four-over 38 in the second nine. Nagarkoti pipped Jayaram into second as he carded a 34 on the front nine and two-over 36 on the back nine holes.

Shivaram dropped shots at the second and fourth holes against a lone birdie on the fifth. In his bogey-free back nine he sank an eagle on the 13th to add to birdies on the 10th, 11th and 17th holes.

Bhuwan shot two-over 70 for a total of two-over 274 and earned Rs 46,000. Jayaram (74) and Sanjay Lama (69) finished tied for third at 276. The duo got Rs 29,250 each. Rame Magar (73) ended up in fifth at 279 and received Rs 23,000. Rabi Khadka (71) was sixth at 281 and earned Rs 21,000, while Chuda Bahadur Bhandari, Dhana Bahadur Thapa and Deepak Magar shared the seventh place and earned Rs 17,333 each. Surya Prasad Sharma finished in 10th at 284 and got Rs 15,000.

Santosh Rokka won the amateur title, his maiden silverware of the Tour with a total score of 19-over 291. He carded a 75 in the final round and finished one stroke ahead of Jiwan Rai (70) of Dharan who made a hole-in-one on the 14th. Overnight leader Mithun Rai, who shot a 78, slipped to third at 293.

In all, 40 golfers—29 pros and 11 amateurs— took part in the event. After the second round, 22 pros and six amateur golfers made the cut for the final two rounds. All 22 professional golfers got their share of cash prizes.