Akshay Bhatia wins in Texas; earns Masters invite


Akshay Bhatia secured his second PGA TOUR title by defeating Denny McCarthy on the first playoff hole

22-year-old Indian American phenom Akshay Bhatia, won the US$ 9.2mn Valero Texas Open after holding off the charging Denny McCarthy in a sudden death playoff. 

Bhatia, entered the final round with a four-shot lead and shot a final round 67. But McCarthy fired seven birdies from No. 12 through 18 to catch him and force the playoff. 


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Bhatia made a pressure-packed 12-foot putt on the 18th hole during regular play after McCarthy had made his 7th birdie, sending the crowd into a frenzy with the most dramatic finish seen recently on the PGA Tour. 


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The drama escalated in the sudden-death playoff when, unexpectedly, McCarthy’s 99-yard wedge 3rd shot to the par 5 found the creek that meanders beside the 18th green. Bhatia then made no mistake from 84 yards to set him up for a tidy 6-foot putt for the win.

The win secured Bhatia a final berth in the 88th Masters Tournament, this week where he has made the cut in his very first outing at Augusta National GC. He became the second Indian-American competitor in the field, joining Sahith Theegala, who had already secured his spot in the field. Both players will be playing this weekend. 



Photo – SNS

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