Shruthi claims title

Shruthi Khanna, winner of the Gold division category in the A.V. Thomas ladies open amateur golf tournament in Bangalore on Friday.  

BANGALORE Oct. 10. On a day when the lead changed hands almost after every couple of holes from the fourth onwards, Shruthi Khanna, the 29 year-old Delhi Golf Club golfer came up trumps after the last two holes to win the A.V. Thomas South India ladies amateur tournament by a margin of three strokes. For runner-up Shalini Malik, it was yet another instance of ending up second at the KGA course having been beaten in the All India final four years ago.

Shruthi Khanna, the overnight leader made a bad start in the final round missing easy putts. On the fourth Shruthi had a double bogey after landing in the bunker and followed suit with another bogey on the fifth. With Shalini bridging the gap and making the score all-square, the pressure began to mount on Shruthi. By the ninth hole Shruthi decided that it was time to take stock of the situation. She picked up her game with a good par on the ninth where she found Shalini making a double bogey for the scores to be again all-square.

The match went neck and neck on the back nine holes too and on the 15th Shalini again forged ahead by one stroke. Both players had a par on the 16th but the Shalini's lack of experience showed on the last two holes. The 17th hole was the turning point in the game. Shruthi hit the fairway with some long drives and Shalini landed in the trees after pulling right. Shruthi's only birdie for the day came at the right time on the 17th with a ten footer while Shalini cracked under pressure to score a double bogey.

The results: Gold Division: 1. Shruthi Khanna ( 80,78,81,82) 321; 2. Shalini Malik (79,77,86,82) 324; 3. Mayali Talwar (77,82,84,83) 326; 4. Anjali Chopra (80,78,85,85) 328; 5. Meghana Bal (85,85,75,87)332.

Silver Division: 1.N. Sharmila (94,89,96,93) 372; 2. Dhanalakshmi Rice (94,90,99,91) 374; 3. Pinky Naresh Kumar (92,101,96,94) 383; 4. Aruna Kulundavelu (96,97,99,97) 389.

Other prizes: AVT Open Trophy Winner: Shruthi Khanna; Runner-up: Shalini Malik; Best Gross on any day: Meghana Bal. Gold Division ( H/c 0-12): Meghana Bal 288; Runner-up: Bhavana Shetty: 309; Silver Division (H/c 13-24): Winner: N. Sharmila 372; Runner-up: Dhanalakshmi Rice 374; Nett winner: Dhanalakshmi Rice 310; Runner-up: Pinky Naresh Kumar 319; Juniors trophy ( Age 18 and below) Best Gross winner: Mayali Talwar 326; Best Nett Winner: Meghana Bal 288. Seniors: (Age 50 and above) Gross Winner: Lalitha Balasubramaniam 263; Nett winner: Renuka Philip : 239; AVT Inter-club Trophy: Delhi Golf Club ( Shruthi Khanna, Anjali Chopra and Shalini Malik ) 304 pts.