Ridhima Dilawari managed to hold her nerves in the closing stages of the 15th and final leg of the Hero Women’s Pro Golf Tour to win her fifth title of the season on Friday.
Ridhima, who trailed Diksha Dagar by three shots after 36 holes, had three birdies between 12th and 15th and then parred the rest for a round of two-under 70. Ridhima totalled one-under 215 as Dagar (74) finished second at the Royal Calcutta Golf Course.
The win took Ridhima to second place on the Hero Women’s Order of Merit at the end of the season. The Order of Merit was won by Gaurika Bishnoi, who topped the honours despite missing the final event on medical grounds. Ridhima won Rs 11,09,433 while Gaurika won Rs.11,84,100 and Amandeep was third with Rs.10,55,933. They were the only ones to cross the Rs. 10 lakh mark for the year.
Dagar, who had an error-filled day, actually started with birdies on first and fourth. She then faltered with a double bogey on Par-4 seventh and another bogey on ninth. At that stage Diksha was still two shots ahead of Ridhima, who turned in even par as against Diksha’s one-over.
On the back nine, the duo playing together bogeyed the 10th. Ridhima birdied the 11th to reduce the lead to one. The drama continued as both parred 12th and 13th and then both birdied Par-4 14th and Par-5 15th. Two more pars each brought them to the 18th tee, where Diksha held a one-shot lead.
On the final hole, Diksha hit out of bounds on the left side, while Ridhima stayed calm and parred out. The second double bogey of the final day saw Dagar drop from one ahead to one behind and handed Ridhima a fifth title of 2019.
Ridhima’s whopping fifth success this season is the best since Vani Kapoor registered seven wins in 2016. Amateur Pranavi Urs shot three-over 75 and finished in a tie for third with Vani Kapoor (76), while Tvesa Malik (74) was fifth and Amandeep Drall (78) slipped to sixth at 12-over 228.
Astha Madan (70) had four birdies against two bogeys for the day’s best card but following 79-80 on the first two days, she was only tied seventh with Khushi Khanijau (74). Gauri Karhade (76), who had one win in her rookie season, was ninth and Thailand’s P Supakchaya (80) was tenth.
As Gaurika, Ridhima and Amandeep took the top three places on the Hero Order of Merit, Neha Tripathi (Rs. 9,47,583), Gursimar Badwal (Rs.7,85,733) and Tvesa Malik (Rs.7,34, 334) took the fourth to sixth places at the end of the season.