Golf: Sharmila shines on opening day

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Mumbai, Dec 11: Sharmila Nicollet, the zero handicapper 16-year-old from Bangalore, found herself at the top of the board, leading by three strokes at the end of the first day in the WIGA sponsored 58th Ladies Western India Open amateur golf championships at the Bombay Presidency golf course today.

Sharmila finished the 70-hole course on par with birdies on the 1st, 8th and 16th holes. It was a great start for the talented youngster, who has already won three amateur ladies open golf championships in 2007 (Noida Open, Chandigarh Open and Northern India Championship at Delhi).

Pushing Sharmila for the top slot was Shradhanjali Singh, who also had a good outing, while finishing with 73. Shradhanjali who had a good front nine, with one birdie and two bogeys, to go out in 36. She slipped a bit on the back nine managing only one birdie but also had three bogeys.

Lying in third place was Nalini Singh from Delhi, who finished in 77. Nalini went out in 34 with a birdie on the 6th and an eagle on 7th hole. But her game fell to pieces on the back nine and she finished with 43. She had bogeys on the 10th, 11th and 15th holes, while a double bogey on the 16th and a triple bogey on the 17th.

Sharmila sounded confident after the first days play saying, ''I played very good golf today and was one under the first nine holes.

A bogey on the 10th spilt my calculations, but the birdie on the 16th hole helped me level the scores. I will try and play a tighter game tomorrow''.

The Silver Division was led by local golfer Mita Gowande, who came home in 84 strokes, followed by Pune's Raksha Phadke (87).

Following are the top results: Gold Division: Sharmila Nicolllet (0) (Bangalore) 70; Shraddhanjali Singh (-1) (US) 73; Nalini Singh (-9) (Delhi) 77; Neha Tripathi (-7) (Kolkatta) 78; Gurbani Singh (-7) (Delhi) 80; Sonam Chugh (-7) (Delhi) 81; Anuradha Yusuf (-10) (Mumbai) 81; Gauri Monga (-5) (Delhi) 81; Shweta Galande (-4) (Del) 83; Rani Maheswari (-11) (Mumbai) 83.

Silver Division: Mita Gowande (Mumbai) 84; Raksha Phadke (Pune) 87; Aarya Tikekar (Pune) 87; Preet Sodhi (Mumbai) 88; Bunty Khanna (Mumbai) 88.


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