Hyderabad’s Sneha Singh hit back on the final day of the 11th leg of the Hero Women’s Pro Golf tour to further reach the senior levels. The 15-year-old golfer, who is coached by her father Sanjay Singh, rode a birdie blitz towards the end of the front nine before playing a steady round on the back nine to clinch victory.
The 25-year-old Delhi golfer, Vani Kapoor dropped some crucial shots to card a disappointing six-over 77. From being five ahead of Sneha, Vani finished one behind her in second place. Gaurika Bishnoi (76) was third, followed by Ananya Datar (76).
Sneha became the first amateur to win in 2019 by emulating Ridhima Dilawari and Pranavi Urs, both of whom won as amateurs last year. Diksha Dagar was also an amateur when she won the closing event of the 2017 season. Other amateurs to win on the Hero WPG Tour include Gurbani Singh, Aditi Ashok and Tvesa Malik in 2015 and Raksha Phadke and Mehar Atwal in 2014.
Sneha started the final day five shots behind Vani. She played in the group ahead of the leading trio, Vani Kapoor, Gaurika Bishnoi, and Ananya Datar. And by the time she ended, Sneha, who is familiar with this layout, set the clubhouse target of nine-over 222 and waited for the final group to come.
Sneha Singh after claiming the 11th Leg of the Hero Women’s Pro Golf Tour
Despite two double bogeys as she displayed tremendous tenacity to fight back, she birdied the second but double-bogeyed the par-3 fourth. She birdied the fifth but again double-bogeyed the par-5 sixth. At that stage, she was two-over and six shots behind Vani.
Sneha began her fightback from the seventh as she birdied three times in a row from seventh to ninth. Thereafter, barring a bogey on par-4 12th, Sneha was steady with pars on the rest for an even-par 71, which in all included five birdies, one bogey, and two double bogeys.
Vani, who had a roller coaster of a round, had three bogeys against one birdie on the front nine, followed by two birdies, four bogeys, and a double bogey. Vani bogeyed fifth, seventh and ninth and her sole birdie on the front nine came on the eighth as she turned in two-over to see her lead cut from five to two shots.
On the back nine, Vani once again had an up-and-down run. She dropped bogeys on the 10th, 12th, and 13th, but picked a birdie on the 11th. After the first 12 holes, Vani was four-over for the day and eight-over for the tournament.
Over the last six holes, Sneha stayed calm and parred each of them, sometimes holing clutch putts. Vani, on the other hand, pulled two ahead with a birdie on Par-4 15th. She then dropped a shot on the 16th, but still held a one-shot lead. Then came the pressure and Vani double-bogeyed the 17th, even as Sneha was on the 18th. As Vani double-bogeyed, Sneha parred for a two-shot swing and sneaked ahead.
Vani needed a birdie on 18th to force a play-off but managed only par to finish with a card of six-over 77 and ended second in her first domestic outing this season.
The 12th leg of the Hero WPG Tour will be held at Boulder Hills Golf and Country Club, Hyderabad from August 14th to 16th.