Chawrasia look to Joburg to erase memories of Indian Open loss

Johannesburg, PTI | Updated : 25 February 2015, 05:47 PM

SSP Chawrasia will look to the Joburg Open to provide him consolation after finishing runner-up for the fourth time at the Hero Indian Open recently.

The 36-year-old Indian, who lost his European Tour card at the end of 2013, has had a good season in 2014 on Asian Tour during which he won the Panasonic Open for his third career title.

Last Sunday, he lost a play-off to fellow Indian Anirban Lahiri, after playing amazing golf for the first three days.

He was bogey free for 52 holes and led by two shots after three days. But Lahiri came back from seven shots behind and got into a playoff as the leaders dropped shots in a bunch.

Chawrasia unable to find the rhythm in windy conditions slipped to five-over 76.

In the play-off Lahiri made a birdie and Chawrasia hit his tee shot into the dreaded bushes and lost. Chawrasia is still the second best Indian on world rankings at No. 168, but way behind Lahiri’s 34th.

Chawrasia’s tied 10th result at Malaysian Open and then runner-up finish at the Hero Indian Open should give him a good start in trying to get his European Tour card for 2016.

Chawrasia got into the Joburg Open on an invite, but as it turned out his second place in European Tour co-sanctioned Hero Indian Open also would have got him in.

“I am trying to play as many events as possible to try and make a card for next year. A win at Hero Indian Open would have immediately given me a right to play European Tour, but it did not happen,” said Chawrasia. “I am playing well despite my final round in Delhi.”

Meanwhile, Darren Clarke is hoping the positive vibes from last week’s appointment as European Ryder Cup captain can improve his on-course performance, starting at this week’s Joburg Open in South Africa.

The 46-year-old Northern Irishman was announced as the man to lead Europe’s quest for a record-breaking fourth consecutive Ryder Cup victory at Hazeltine in 19 months’ time, and has been overwhelmed by the messages of goodwill he has received from the world of golf.

But before he gets to the business end of his captaincy,v Clarke is hoping that his new position will enable him to find a winning formula on the fairways of the Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club as he looks to recapture his best form.

First Published: Wednesday, February 25, 2015 04:24 PM
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