Sukra defends Surya Nepal Eastern Open crown

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Surya Nepal Eastern Open begins Local pro Sukra takes lead

Sukra defends Surya Nepal Eastern Open crown

DHARAN, January 26: Nepal No 1 pro Sukra Bahadur Rai defended the title of the Surya Nepal Eastern Open at the par-70 Dharan Golf Club on Friday.

Local pro Sukra carded 1-under 69 in the third round and posted the 54-hole total score of 3-under 207. He recorded a five-stroke victory over fellow Dharan pro Niraj Tamang to claim his 10th career title and equal with veteran pro Deepak Magar and former Nepal No 1 pro Deepak Acharya. Along with the title, Sukra received Rs 140,000.

Niraj finished second at 2-over 212 after he played 3-over 73 and he received Rs 96,000. Former top pro Bhuvan Nagarkoti played 1-over 71 to finish third at 3-over 213 and he got Rs 72,000. Rajen Rai, Bhuwan Kumar Rokka and Rame Magar shared the fourth position at 7-over 217. Rajen and Bhuwan played 73 each, while Rame shot 71. They earned Rs 50,500 each.

Rabi Khadka (75) came seventh at 9-over 219 and he received Rs 39,000, while Sanjay Lama and Surya Prasad Sharma shared the eighth position at 220. Both of them played 73 in the final round and they earned Rs 34,250 each. Deoraj Pakhrin (73) finished 10th at 11-over 221 and he received Rs 31,000.

Gajendra Gurung won the amateur section title on count back after he was tied on 8-over 218 with Yubraj Bhujel. Gajendra played 3-over 73 on the final day, while Yubraj faltered to 6-over 76. Yubraj was five strokes ahead of Gajendra going into the final round but he faltered to 4-over 40 on the front nine and played 2-over 36 on the back nine. Gajendra played 1-over 37 and 2-over 36 on two halves respectively. Suman Pariyar (70) and Sundar Rai (75) were joint third at 11-over 221.

Nepal No 1 pro Sukra carded 3-under 33 on the front nine but he faltered to 2-over 36 on the back nine. He carded four straight birdies on the third, fourth, fifth and sixth holes before facing a bogey on the eighth hole. After taking the turn, Sukra carded a birdie on the 11th hole but he dropped shots on the 13th, 14th and 16th holes.

Runner-up Niraj carded 1-under 35 on the front nine and played 4-over 38 on the back nine. He dropped shots on fifth and eight holes against birdies on the third, sixth and ninth holes. On the back nine, he suffered a double bogey on the 15th hole and faced bogeys on the 10th, 14th and 17th holes before carding the lone birdie on the final hole.

Bhuvan carded 1-under 35 on the front nine and played 2-over 36 on the back nine. He carded three birdies on the third, eighth and ninth holes and faced a double bogey on the sixth hole before taking the turn. On the back nine, Bhuvan dropped shots on the 13th, 14th and 17th holes against a birdie on the 18th hole.

A total of 47 golfers – 30 pros and 17 amateurs – took part in the 54-hole tournament organised by PGA Nepal under the sponsorship of Surya Nepal Pvt Ltd. The event carried a cash purse of Rs 840,000 with pros in top 21 earning their share of cash prizes. Marketing Manager of Surya Nepal Pvt Ltd Keshav Pradhan, Vice-president of Nepal Golf Association Tilak Rai, Koshi Province Golf Association Vice-president Bharat Tamang and Dharan Golf Club President Birendra Bikram Limbu handed over prizes to the winners. The tournament will conclude with the Pro-Am event on Saturday.