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Gaurika raring to extend lead at the top of Hero Order of Merit

Lucknow, November 21: Gaurika Bishnoi, the hugely talented youngster from Gurgaon, who held the spotlight on the first two days of the just-concluded Hero Women’s Indian Open, will be a strong favourite to add to her sole title in the 2017 Hero WPG Tour which assembles again for the 15th leg in Lucknow on Wednesday. The event will be held at the Palms Golf Club and Resort in Lucknow.

Gaurika, who was a superb 10th after the first round dropped to T-26th after two rounds and finished a creditable T-44th, which was a great effort in a big international event. “The finish has given me great confidence and I want to consolidate my play over the next year or so,” says Gaurika.

The 19-year-old Rohtak-born Gaurika is the current leader of the Hero Order of Merit with a string of consistent performances. She has won one title and registered nine other Top-5 finishes has been in excellent form this season. Other than the win in the third leg in Kolkata, she was second in three others at Pune, Bengaluru and Hosur. She is also the only player this season to cross Rs. 10 lakhs in winnings.

Amandeep Drall, who would have been disappointed with her showing at the Hero Women’s Indian Open and would be looking to make amends for that and also make a bid to overtake Gaurika as the season enters it final stages. She is Rs. 42,100 behind Gaurika and a win this week would take her to the top.

Missing from the field this week is Vani Kapoor, who took off for China soon after the Indian Open. Vani, who was sixth at the Hero Women’s Indian Open, is also likely to play in Dubai in the final event of the Ladies European Tour.

On Wednesday Gaurika Bishnoi has been paired with Amandeep Drall and Smriti Mehra in the final group, while Gursimar Badwal, Saaniya Sharma and Ayesha Kapur are in the second last group. Siddhi Kapoor, amateur Gurjot Badwal and Neha Tripathi are paired together, while promising Afshan Fatima, Mehar Atwal and Tvesa Malik go out in the first group at 8.40 am.