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Thursday, May 16, 2019

It’s like king without crown, says Nagarkoti

Bhuwan Nagarkoti, Nepal No 1 professional golfer

Bhuwan Nagarkoti poses for a photo after becoming the new Nepal No 1 professional golfer in Kathmandu on Thursday. Photo: THT

Kathmandu, May 16

Bhuwan Nagarkoti became the new Nepal No 1 professional golfer for the first time but he described the achievement as the King without a crown.

Nagarkoti, who narrowly missed the chance to finish as the top golfer in the previous season when he won three titles, failed to land a trophy this season and was behind amateur golfers in two tournaments. In the nine events played in the 2018-19 season, Nagarkoti finished as runner-up in two events.

“I am happy to finish at the top in Order of Merit but I am feeling like a King without a crown,” said Nagarkoti, who faced one-stroke defeat at the hands of amateur golfer Sukra Bahadur Rai in the Surya Nepal Premier Golf Championship at the Gokarna Golf Club today. “I have not been able to convince myself regarding my performance throughout the season. I played badly on a couple of occasions and at the same time I was also not been able to grab the opportunities. I was hoping to become the No 1 pro by winning the title but I just fell short despite coming so close,” said Nagarkoti, who rued the first-round performance of three-over 75. He bounced back with the rounds of five-under 67 and three-under 69 before closing with another 67.

With the total earning of Rs 663,000 in nine events, Nagarkoti dethroned Shivaram Shrestha for the first time in nine years. Shrestha, who has claimed 44 titles including three in the season, did not take part in the last four events after he went to the United States of America for training. Still, he finished second with Rs 460,000. Bikash Adhikari finished third in the Order of Merit with Rs 411,333, while Sanjay Lama dropped to fourth with Rs 386,500 and Dhana Bahadur Thapa was fifth with the earning of Rs 381,167.

Nagarkoti lauded the performance of amateur golfers in the Tour. “The amateur golfers have come to the level of pros and a couple of them are even better,” said Nagarkoti, who had finished first among pros but behind amateur Subash Tamang in the Surya Nepal Challenge. “The amateur golfers posed threat in almost all events. They have improved a lot but the standard of professional golfers remained the same,” he added.

Winner of the Surya Nepal Premier, Sukra Bahadur Rai was over the moon after winning the second major title of the season and credited the success to Nepal Golf Association President Tashi Ghale. “I am extremely happy to create the history which I had never thought of,” said Rai. “It was possible all because of my hard work in the course and relentless support from Tashi sir,” he added. Asked about the final-hole pressure after losing two shots in the last two holes, Rai said he had lost hope. “I was literally afraid of hitting the winning put as it was not an easy one but I took my time and did it to win the trophy,” he added.

Rai said the next target was to win gold medal for the country in the 13th South Asian Games. “I know that we can win gold medal in team event and we need to put in a lot of hard works to achieve the goal,” he added. Nepal is slated to host the 13th edition of the regional sporting extravaganza from December 1-10.

While Rai bagged two titles in the season, fellow amateur golfers Tanka Bahadur Karki and Subash Tamang bagged one each. Of the remaining five titles, Shivaram Shrestha claimed three, whereas pros Dhana Bahadur Thapa and Sanjay Lama took one each.

from Sports – The Himalayan Times http://bit.ly/30rdGZ9

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