SAARC golf meet from today

SAARC golf meet from today

 The 12th edition of the SAARC Golf Championship will get underway at the Karnataka Golf Association on Thursday with eight-time winners India starting firm favourites.

India, who won the first edition of the tournament held here at the very same course way back in 1999, will be led by talented amateur Viraj Madappa, Pukhraj Singh Gill and Jaibir Singh. Jaibir will also be doubling up as the team manager.

Conceived to promote friendship in the region, the event has become a stepping stone for talented amateurs to make their mark with a few players like Mohd Siddikur of Bangladesh and Mithun Perera and K Prabagaran of Sri Lanka going on to have successful pro careers on the Indian circuit. Madappa, Pukhraj and and Jaibir would be keen to use this opportunity to showcase their talent and with a depleted field to contend, things won’t be that tough for the trio.

Following the pull-out of Nepal owing to earthquake that has paralysed the nation and the last-minute withdrawal of Sri Lanka, only four countries will be competing for the top honours. Apart from India, the three others are Bangladesh, Bhutan and Afghanistan.

All three players from each country will be involved in a strokeplay competition on Thursday with the top scores considered for computation to determine the seeding. In Friday’s semifinals, the first-placed country will play the third-placed nation while the second-placed team will take on the fourth-placed team in a 36-hole contest.

The winners will then fight it out for the top prize in a an 18-hole final on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Pakistan will be playing in a series of friendship matches on Saturday. Pakistan will not be involved in the competitive matches.

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