Macau: Anirban Lahiri equalled the course record with a sensational nine-under 62 at the par-71 Macau Golf and Country Club to finish second at the Venetian Macau Open, here, on Sunday.
Despite a fine show, Lahiri fell three short of Australian Scott Hend, who won his third title of the season by a commanding three strokes and picked up the champion’s cheque of $144,000.
Four-time Major Ernie Els of South Africa shared the third spot with Elmer Salvador of the Philippines after a 67 and 66, respectively, in the $800,000 Asian Tour tournament.
Interestingly, the 26-year-old Lahiri tied countryman Amandeep Johl’s course mark set in 2004. Among the other Indians in fray, Rahil Gangjee (72), lying fourth overnight, slipped to 11th at six-under 278, while Arjun Atwal (70) playing with Lahiri finished tied 13th at five-under 279.
Defending champion Gaganjeet Bhullar (67) played his best round of the week and ended 22nd alongside SSP Chowrasia (69) and Chiragh Kumar (72). Himmat Rai (70) was tied 45th, Ajeetesh Sandhu (70) was tied 53rd, Sujjan Singh (72) was tied 57th and Shankar Das (76) was tied 63rd.
Lahiri, starting the day at four-under for 54 holes, cracked eight birdies, an eagle and dropped just one shot to have a shy at the title. However, Hend, carrying an overnight four-shot lead over Ernie Els and Siddikur, never allowed anyone to get close.
The big-hitting Hend comfortably held off the chasing pack closing with a four-under-par 67 for a 16-under-par 268 total.Lahiri got to within two shots of Hend during the final round but was still delighted with his strong finish.
Lahiri, who finished at 13-under 271 said, “I’m really pleased. I played really good right from the start. Saturday was a similar story but I ran into some trouble on the back nine. I’m glad that I kept my cool and played solidly in the end.
“I don’t know if I’ve done enough this week but I’m still glad with the way I’ve played the last few days. Didn’t get on to the best starts but I’m glad that my golf has improved in the last few weeks.” (PTI)