Indian pros wrap up International season

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2023 season recap for Shubhankar, Diksha and Aditi

As we get to the end of the year, the PGA Tour’s 2023-24 wrap around season is already underway but the European DP World Tour, LPGA, and Ladies European Tour (LET) are still in the final stages of their seasons. With two events remaining on the DP World Tour and LET respectively, and three on the LPGA, we take a look at where the Indian pros on these tours currently stand, and what they still have to play for.

DP World Tour

Shubhankar Sharma appears to have cost himself a shot at qualifying for the season ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai by not playing in last week’s Qatar Masters.

Sharma qualified for the DP World Championship last year as he was in the rankings top 50 but has dropped to 63 rd this year with only the top-50 getting into the Dubai event. On top of that, the Nedbank Challenge in mid-November, the only tournament remaining prior to the tour championship, is restricted to the top-60 in the rankings. Sharma is currently not listed in the tournament field, which would mean his season is effectively over despite his 8 th place finish in the 2023 British Open in July.

Meanwhile, it has been a tough introduction to European Tour golf for the other Indian with full playing rights in 2023 – Delhi’s Manu Gandas. The 2022 PGTI No 1 who was awarded full playing rights in Europe, has struggled all season and is ranked 181st currently. He has missed his last seven cuts and his best result all year was a tie for 20th at the ISPS Handa World Invitational in August.

LPGA Tour

Bangalore’s Aditi Ashok has put together far-and-away her best season on the LPGA but appears to have hit a wall over the last few months. The last of her five top-10 finishes this season came in mid-July. Since then, other than her 2nd place at the Asian Games in China, her best finish over the span of five tournaments has been a tie for 40 th in the AIG Women’s (British) Open, a major.

Still, Aditi will comfortably qualify for the season ending LPGA’s Tour Championship in November as she is currently 39 th in the rankings. It will be the first time she has qualified, marking a significant milestone in her career.


Ladies European Tour

Delhi’s young Diksha Dagar has the chance to do something no Indian player has ever done and that is to finish at the top of the Ladies European Tour rankingsl. With two events remaining. Dagar is in second place, right behind leader Celine Boutier of France. To accomplish that feat, Dagar will need to post high finishes in the tour’s two remaining events.

The first is the Ladies Mallorca Open, a 54-hole, no-cut event from Nov 16 to 18, that is being played for the first time. It will be followed by the season-ending Andalucia Costa del Sol Open de Espana. Given that Dagar has nine top-10 finishes on the season from 25 events, she has a realistic chance of pulling it off.

Unfortunately, for Dagar, a proposal by the LET that would have given the top four in The rankings their (US) LPGA cards for the 2024 season has been pushed back one year, according to Golf Digest magazine. Its only at the end of 2024 that Europe’s top four will automatically be awarded LPGA Tour cards for 2025.

With players inside the top-135 in the LET rankings earning an exemption into the final stage of LET Qualifying, Vani Kapoor in 107 th . Gaurika Bishnoi at 121 and Amandeep Drall at 123 will have the chance to earn back their full playing right cards for the 2024 season, should they wish to do so.

Overall, the women have given Indian golf fans much to cheer about this season and in Dagar’s case in particular, there remains much to cheer for as the season draws to a close. Sadly, the same cannot be said for the men. That’s something Indian golf can only hope to rectify next season.

 


Photo – LET Flickr/DPWT


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