golfer gaurika

In this file photo, Gaurika Bishnoi of India watches her tee shot on the 4th hole during day two stroke play of the Queen Sirikit Cup of Golf at the Saujana Golf and Country Club on April 10, 2014 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Stanley Chou/Getty Images)

AHMEDABAD — Golfer Gaurika Bishnoi overcame a bogey start to play a flawless round thereafter and finish with a card of one-under 71 and take the lead after the opening round of the fourth leg of the Hero Women's Pro Tour at the Par-72 Kalhaar Blues and Greens here Feb. 13.

Trailing Gaurika by a single shot was Ridhima Dilawari, who is appearing in her first full season as a pro.

Ridhima, who represented India at the Jakarta Asian Games, won two Hero WPGT events in 2018, once as an amateur and then as a pro in the penultimate event of the year.

Neha Tripathi rallied from a bogey-bogey start, which was followed by a third bogey on the fifth. Sifat Alag was sole fourth at 75 after looking set to finish under par.

Siddhi Kapoor, four-over after three holes, did well to get to 76 and was tied fifth with Smriti Mehra and Amandeep Drall. Gursimar Badwal, one of the favourites this week, trailed in tied eighth place with Suchitra Ramesh and Anisha Padukone with cards of 78.

Gaurika, who had a win and a four runner-up finishes in eight starts last season, had a bogey on the Par-4 first hole after which she had two birdies on the Par-4 sixth and Par-5 12th holes. She parred the remainder of the holes.

Ridhima had a double bogey on the Par-4 sixth and another bogey on the ninth to turn in three-over 39. She however, fought back extremely well to birdie the 12th, 14th and 18th to finish at even par 72.

Neha birdied eighth, 13th and 16th but also bogeyed 1st, 2nd, 5th, 10th and 12th in her eventful 74, which placed her in third position.

Sifat, one of the new pros this season, was one-under through 16 holes with four birdies, one bogey and one double. She then succumbed to a bogey on 17th and a triple bogey on 18th to end up at 75.

In the second round, Ayesha Kapur and Mehar Atwal will commence proceedings in the first two-ball, while Afshan Fatima, Anousha Tripathi and Sonam Chugh will play together in the second group.

Khushi Khanijau, Ananya Datar and Anisha form the third group, followed by Suchitra, Gursimar and Amandeep in group four. Smriti, Siddhi Kapoor and Sifat are in the penultimate three-ball, which will be followed by the leader group consisting of Neha, Ridhima and Gaurika.

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