Five Indian girls in Ladies Sanya Open golf

The other Indians in fray are Amandeep Drall, Smriti Mehra, Saaniya Sharma and Neha Tripathi.

Vani Kapoor is in second place among Indians.   -  M. Periasamy

Young golfer Vani Kapoor will lead a group of five Indians at the USD 300,000 Sanya Ladies Open at the Yalong Bay Golf Club here this week. Besides Vani, the other Indians in fray are Amandeep Drall, Smriti Mehra, Saaniya Sharma and Neha Tripathi.

The event is sanctioned by the Ladies European Tour and will give the Indian girls a good preparation for the Hero Women's Indian Open next month at home. The five Indian women have all had good records on the domestic Hero Women's Professional Golf Tour of India, where

Amandeep Drall is leading the rankings with four wins, while Vani Kapoor is in second place despite six places.

Neha Tripathi has two wins and Smriti has been a legend in Indian women's golf, having been a pioneer and the first to have played on the LPGA Tour in US back in late 1990s.

Meanwhile, the 20-year-old from Guangzhou China's Xi Yu Lin who has twice won the Sanya Ladies Open starts as a big favourite. Lin's status in China has soared since she recorded an historic hole-in-one in the third round of the first women's Olympic golf competition in more than 100 years at Rio 2016. Lin is one of 23 Chinese players in the field of 126 competitors and is due to begin her title defence on Thursday, playing alongside Gwladys Nocera and Vani Kapoor.

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