Tvesa plays flawless back nine to win 4th leg of Hero WPGT comfortably

Pune, February 16: Gurgaon’s 21-year-old Tvesa Malik turned in the best card of the week to run away a comfortable winner in the fourth leg of the Hero’s Women’s Pro Golf Tour on Friday. Tvesa, who turned pro last year and won twice in eight starts, shot two-under 70 to finish at six-over 222 and win by four shots over Suchitra Ramesh (74).

Overnight co-leaders Saaniya Sharma (76) and Neha Tripathi (77) faded away on the final day and ended third and fourth at 227 and 228.

Tvesa hit the spotlight midway through the last season, which was her rookie year. She won twice in the seventh leg at Bengaluru and then in the 12th at Delhi Golf Club. This year in each of the first three legs she finished inside Top-3. She was T-3rd at Kalhaar Blues & Greens Ahmedabad, T-2nd at BPGC Mumbai and third at Poona Club Golf Course last week.

With the win in Oxford, Tvesa also zoomed to the top of the Hero Order of Merit, displacing the erstwhile leader Gursimar Badwal, who was fifth this week after being T-3rd, T-2nd and first in previous three legs.

Tvesa, who was one shot behind the leaders at the start of the final round, began solidly with two pars and then a birdie on third. Two more pars later she dropped her first shot of the day on par-4 sixth hole. She made up for that quickly with a birdie on seventh, but gave away those gains on the eighth. She turned in even par 36.

On the back nine, Tvesa birdied the 10th and 14th and did not drop a single shot on the stretch for a creditable 70 and a four-shot win.

Suchitra Ramesh, who had back-to-back birdies on fourth and fifth, dropped a bogey on sixth and a double on eighth to turn in one-over. On the back nine, she birdied 14th but dropped a shot on 18th, at which time she had no chance of catching up with Tvesa.

Saaniya had a run of three bogeys from fourth to sixth which jeopardised her title hopes and she had three more bogeys on back nine. She had just one birdie on either side of the turn in her 76.

Neha birdied first and ninth and dropped a shot on sixth and was the only player to play the front nine in under par. She was leading at that stage. A quadruple bogey on 10th ruined her chances and she was unable to recover from that disaster. She failed to find any birdies after that and also dropped shots on 14th and 18th to slip to fourth.

Gursimar Badwal (73) salvaged the week with a solid final round and leaped to Tied-5th alongside Smriti Mehra (78).

Ayesha Kapur (74) and Siddhi Kapoor (75) were Tied-7th, while Millie Saroha (81) was ninth and Trisha Sunil (74) was tenth. The first round co-leader Tavleen Batra fell further with a second successive 85 and ended 16th.

As Tvesa moved to the top of the Hero Order of Merit with Rs. 3,72,000 from four starts, Gursimar Badwal (Rs. 3,29,300) was second and Neha Tripathi was third with Rs. 3,16,400.