Sharmila eyes an encore

Sharmila eyes an encore

WGAIs second leg kicks off today

Sharmila eyes an encore

Having accomplished Part 1 of her recovery plan in thrilling fashion, Sharmila Nicollet will be aiming for an encore in the second part when the second leg of the Hero Wom-en's Pro Golf Tour 2012 kicks off at the Clover Greens here on Tuesday.

After going through a wretched run on her debut Ladies European Tour where she made the cut just two times in 11 appearances, the 21-year-old Bangalorean chose to make a brief visit to the domestic tour in a bid to regain her form and confidence.

While she started well in the season-opening event at the KGA, her short game travails was exposed brutally when she struggled to hold regulation putts to tumble down in the second round.  Realising that local caddies have spoilt her by feeding her every bit of information from club selection to lines on greens, her coach Tarun Sardesai decided to carry the bag around in the final round, forcing Sharmila to make every decision on the course.

The strategy seemed to work wonders for the 5’11’’ pro as she first hunted down a four-stroke deficit first before unleashing a piece of magic in the play-off to edge out pro debutante Vani Kapoor for the title.

Oozing confidence following the self-earned victory, Sharmila, who will be leaving to Austria for the remainder of the European Tour, will be hoping for a fitting departure.
“The win last week has done wonders to my confidence and I am looking forward to another productive week here,” said Sharmila.

“This being a short course, approaches will have to be spot on. The greens are tricky and one needs to be on the right side of the greens. Wind will also be a factor, but I am used to playing on windy courses.”

However, the candidates with the potential of spoiling her party at the par-70 course in the Karnataka-Tamil Nadu border are last leg’s runner-up Vani, veteran Smriti Mehra and Neha Tripathi.

Although she finished second best to Sharmila, the diminutive Vani gave a good account of herself at the KGA. After enjoying a promising amateur career, the Delhi teenager showed that she has the skills to compete with the pros courtesy her fine all-round game. Smriti and Neha had disappointing outings last week and the duo would be hoping to get their bearings right at the earliest as the tour kicks on.