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Nerveless Manu Gandas seals thumping four-shot win at Dream Valley Group presents Vooty Masters 2022
Gandas earns a record fifth title of the season and equals record for lowest winning total on the PGTI
Yuvraj Singh Sandhu matches course record 63 to finish fourth and maintain his lead in the TATA Steel PGTI Ranking
Vikarabad, Telangana, November 27, 2022: Manu Gandas of Gurugram sealed a thumping four-shot win after a nerveless final round display of six-under 66 at the inaugural Dream Valley Group presents Vooty Masters, a Rs. 1 crore event played at the Vooty Golf County in Vikarabad, Telangana.
Manu (63-68-67-66), the overnight leader by one shot, totaled 24-under 264 for the week to register his fifth win of 2022 and thus match the PGTI record for most wins in a season, a record previously jointly held by Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (2022), Gaganjeet Bhullar (2009) and Ashok Kumar (2006-07). In the process, Gandas also equaled the PGTI record for the lowest winning total (24-under 264) set earlier by Anirban Lahiri, Rashid Khan and Akshay Sharma.
Gandas took home the winning cheque worth Rs. 15,00,000 to consolidate himself in second position in the TATA Steel PGTI Ranking as his prize money earnings for the season moved to Rs. 65,78,938.
Om Prakash Chouhan (66-63-73-66) of Mhow finished runner-up at 20-under 268 following his last round of 66.
Delhi’s Shamim Khan shot a fine 64 on Sunday to secure third place at 16-under 272.
Chandigarh’s Yuvraj Singh Sandhu continues to lead the PGTI Order of Merit thanks to his sensational last round effort of nine-under 63 which matched the course record set previously in the week by Manu Gandas and Om Prakash Chouhan. Yuvraj gained 25 spots to finish fourth at 14-under 274 which took his season’s earnings to Rs. 67,39,568.
The 26-year-old Manu Gandas, who set the course record of 63 on day one, had a mixed start to round four with birdie-bogey on the first two holes. But Manu began to find his groove with birdies on the third and fifth where a terrific approach shot and a brilliant chip left him tap-in putts. Gandas then sank birdie putts from a range of seven to 10 feet on the eighth and ninth to lead by five shots at the turn over nearest rival Om Prakash Chouhan.
Gandas, who has six career titles on the PGTI, then hit a poor approach and missed a short putt on the 10th to drop a double-bogey. Just as Om Prakash Chouhan got within two shots of Manu, the latter resurrected his round with birdies on the 14th and 15th thanks to his sharp chipping and putting. Gandas finally saw it home in style with birdies on the last two holes including a monster 45-feet conversion on the 18th.
Manu said, “I took one shot at a time and stayed in the present. I had a bad start on the back-nine but was steady thereafter and set up a lot of birdie opportunities for myself. Overall, it was a solid round barring a couple of mistakes.
“I tend to get a bit aggressive as the round progresses but I managed to keep that tendency in check. I kept my composure well.
“I kept the intensity going after I got my first birdie on the back-nine. I’m quite pleased with the records added to my name but my focus is more on taking my game to the next level. This win gives me the momentum for the final two events of the season.
“It was an amazing experience playing here at the world-class Vooty Golf County for the first time. The course conditions were immaculate. I thank the Dream Valley Group for supporting this event.”
Om Prakash Chouhan made six birdies on a day he went error-free. He was briefly in contention on the back-nine when he got within two shots of the lead.
Shamim Khan made nine birdies and a bogey during his outstanding 64.
Yuvraj Singh Sandhu’s extraordinary 63 featured an eagle on the 16th, eight birdies and a bogey.
The Chandigarh duo of Abhijit Singh Chadha (65) and Angad Cheema (76) claimed tied fifth place at 13-under 275.
Chandigarh’s Ajeetesh Sandhu finished tied 34th at three-under 285.
Fifteen-year-old Noida-based amateur Aarav D Shah, an Australian national, took the trophy for the best performing amateur after he too ended the week in tied 34th place.
Manu Gandas regains the advantage with third round 67
Angad Cheema close on the leader’s heels
Vikarabad, Telangana, November 26, 2022: Manu Gandas of Gurugram shot a resolute five-under 67 in the penultimate round to regain the advantage at the inaugural Dream Valley Group presents Vooty Masters, a Rs. 1 crore event being played at the Vooty Golf County in Vikarabad, Telangana.
Manu (63-68-67), the first round leader, who had slipped into second place on day two, now enjoys a slender one-shot lead at a total of 18-under 198. Gandas, currently placed second on the PGTI Order of Merit, thus raised his hopes of bagging his fifth title this season which would see him equal the PGTI record for most wins in a season currently held jointly by Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (2022), Gaganjeet Bhullar (2009) and Ashok Kumar (2006-07). Manu is now also in with a good chance of wresting the Order of Merit lead from Yuvraj Singh Sandhu.
Chandigarh’s Angad Cheema (65-67-67), who was overnight third, moved into second position at 17-under 199 after he too shot an equally impressive 67 on day three.
Mhow-based Om Prakash Chouhan (66-63-73), the second round leader, carded a sedate 73 on Saturday to drop down to third place at 14-under 202.
The 26-year-old Manu Gandas, who set the course record of 63 on day one, had a steady front-nine in round three making three birdies and a bogey. Manu’s birdies on the front-nine included a good up and down from the bunker on the fifth and a drive that found the par-4 seventh green. He drove the seventh green for the second day running.
Gandas, who has five career titles on the PGTI, then collected four birdies and a bogey on the back-nine to move to the top. Manu picked up strokes on the 12th and 16th to score birdies on all the four par-5s. He left himself a four-footer on the 13th and drove past the green on the par-4 15th to claim his other two birdies on the back-nine. He closed the round with an 18-feet conversion for a tremendous par save on the 18th.
Manu, the top contender going into round four, said, “My driving and tee shots were the best part of my game today. I drove two par-4 greens today and took advantage of all the par-5s. I would say my iron-play was not up to the mark and I made some errors that could’ve been easily avoided.
“After an ordinary front-nine I had a far more encouraging back-nine today. It’s now about taking it one shot at a time and not looking too far ahead on the final day.”
Angad Cheema, currently 24th on the TATA Steel PGTI Rankings with three top-10s this season, will be the other main contender in the final round as he kept himself in the hunt with seven birdies and two bogeys on Saturday. Angad, who sank five of his birdies on the back-nine, made some exceptional chip-putts during round three.
Cheema, whose only win on the PGTI came in his rookie season back in 2013, said, “It was not one of my best days but I’m glad that I still managed to keep myself in contention. I got some momentum on the back-nine today which I will look to carry forward into the final round.”
Delhi’s Harshjeet Singh Sethie (68) and Noida’s Gaurav Pratap Singh (69) were placed tied fourth at 13-under 203.
Ajeetesh Sandhu (70), one of the top names in the field, was tied 18th at seven-under 209.
PGTI Order of Merit leader and five-time winner this season Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (73), was tied 29th at five-under 211.
Fifteen-year-old Noida-based amateur Aarav D Shah (69), an Australian national, was placed tied 33rd at four-under 212.
Om Prakash Chouhan matches course record of 63 to zoom to the top at the halfway stage
Vikarabad, Telangana, November 25, 2022: Om Prakash Chouhan of Mhow, Madhya Pradesh, matched Manu Gandas’ course record of nine-under 63 from round one to gain three spots and zoom into a two-shot lead at a total of 15-under 129 after round two of the inaugural Dream Valley Group presents Vooty Masters, a Rs. 1 crore event being played at the Vooty Golf County in Vikarabad, Telangana.
Gurugram-based Manu Gandas, the first round leader, slipped into second place at 13-under 131 after posting a 68 on day two.
Chandigarh’s Angad Cheema (67), who was overnight tied second, ended the second round in third place at 12-under 132.
The cut came down at one-under 143. Fifty professionals and one amateur made the cut to make it to the money rounds over the weekend.
Om Prakash Chouhan (66-63) had early jitters as he saved par from the bunker on the 10th, his first hole of the day. The 36-year-old, who is a seven-time winner on the PGTI, then made his first move of the day with a 15-feet eagle conversion on the 12th. Chouhan built on the momentum with his birdie on the 15th where he drove the par-4 green. Another good par save from the bunker followed on the 16th before he picked up a birdie on the 18th.
Om Prakash, a winner on the PGTI this year and currently placed sixth on the PGTI Order of Merit, enjoyed an even better back-nine picking up five birdies including three where he made some terrific up and downs from the bunker.
Om Prakash said, “Every aspect of my game was sharper today as compared to round one, especially my second shots and bunker shots. I changed my driver and 3-wood last week as I felt that I wasn’t hitting it that well. The new clubs have helped me improve both my distance and accuracy off the tee.
“I felt the rhythm after the good par-save on the 10th. Then the 15-feet eagle conversion on the 12th got my putter going. This is a new golf course for all the players including myself so I utilized the practice round and the Pro-Am round before the event really well. That eventually helped me a lot in planning my game."
Manu Gandas (63-68), who set the course record of 63 on day one, had an off day with his approach shots despite putting together six birdies in exchange for a double-bogey. The double-bogey on the 16th in the first half of Manu’s round altered the momentum for him after he had picked up two birdies on his first six holes.
Noida’s Gaurav Pratap Singh (65) was placed fourth at 10-under 134.
PGTI Order of Merit leader and five-time winner this season Yuvraj Singh Sandhu (71), was tied 12th at six-under 138.
Ajeetesh Sandhu (69), one of the pre-event favourites, was tied 17th at five-under 139.
Fifteen-year-old Noida-based player Aarav D Shah, an Australian national, was the lone amateur to make the cut as he totaled one-under 143 to be tied 40th.
All the local players from Hyderabad missed the cut.
Manu Gandas’ fiery nine-under 63 hands him round one lead at Dream Valley Group presents Vooty Masters 2022
Vikarabad, Telangana, November 24, 2022: Manu Gandas of Gurugram, a winner of four titles this season, continued his red-hot form with a fiery nine-under 63, to take the day one lead at the inaugural Dream Valley Group presents Vooty Masters. In the process, Manu, currently second on the PGTI Order of Merit, also set the course record at the first ever PGTI event being played at the Vooty Golf County in Vikarabad.
Chandigarh’s Angad Cheema and Gurugram-based Kartik Sharma trailed Manu by two strokes having carded identical scores of seven-under 65 for a share of second spot. One stroke behind the duo were a bunch of four golfers sharing fourth spot, including Varun Parikh, Om Prakash Chouhan, Arjun Bhati and Kshitij Naveed Kaul.
Teeing-off just before noon at the pristine Vooty Golf County, Manu logged a bogey-free round as he sank four birdies on the front-nine and five on the back-nine, in a flawless display. Gandas’ awesome hitting saw him set up a number of short birdie putts. His longest conversion of the day was a 25-footer on the sixth.
On a course where the players are finding it tough to negotiate the thick rough, Manu helped his cause by finding 10 out of the 14 fairways and 14 greens in regulation. His golden stretch came with three consecutive birdies from the 14th to the 16th as he chipped-in from the bunker on the 14th, drove past the par-4 green on the 15th for an up and down and then made an up and down from the bunker on the 16th.
Manu said, “My driving off the tee was quite good and my putting was also better than the past two weeks. I also made some good up and downs today. The chip-in from the bunker on the 14th really got me going today as I followed it up with three more birdies in quick succession.
“I feel this is a risk-reward course. If you take the risk, you will be rewarded. But at the same time you have to be wary of the challenges posed by the thick rough. I’m in a good mental space at the moment. It’s now about sticking to the process and being patient and the results should then follow.”
Angad Cheema and Kartik Sharma, both in joint second at 65, too shot error-free rounds.
PGTI Order of Merit leader and five-time winner this season Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, was tied eighth at 67. The Chandigarh golfer mixed an eagle and six birdies with three bogeys on Thursday.
Aadil Bedi, another Chandigarh-based professional, fired a hole-in-one on the second hole during his round of 67 to also be placed tied eighth along with Yuvraj and Karan Taunk.
Ajeetesh Sandhu, one of the pre-event favourites, was tied 22nd with a score of 70.
Mohd Azhar, playing at his home course, returned a 72, to be the highest-placed local golfer at tied 45th.