Here are all the major updates and developments in Indian sport on March 12.
Gokulam downs Sreenidi, finishes third in I-League
Gokulam Kerala defeated Sreenidi Deccan by a lone goal at the EMS Corporation Stadium in Kozhikode on Sunday and finished third in the I-League, behind champion RoundGlass Punjab FC and Sreenidi.
Gokulam’s Spanish forward Sergio Mendigutxia scored off a penalty, awarded after Sreenidi captain David Castaneda handled the ball inside the box, early in the second half and that proved to be the match-winner.
sergio Mendigutxia (No. 70) celebrates after scoring the Gokulam Kerala match-winner in the I-League match against Sreenidi Deccan at Kozhikode on Sunday. The victory helped Gokulam finish third in the I-League.
| Photo Credit: Gokulam Kerala on Twitter
Mendigutxia sent a powerful shot to the left corner and though Sreenidi goalkeeper Harsh Patil guessed it right, the ball was beyond his reach.
The home team’s goalkeeper Shibinraj Kunniyil, who pulled off many saves, was adjudged as the player of the match.
The result: Gokulam Kerala 1 (Sergio Mendigutxia 50) bt Sreenidi Deccan 0.
Gandas Tied-53rd at Kenya Open, Shubhankar misses cut
Indian golfer Manu Gandas found himself in Tied-53rd place after a mixed day at the Magical Kenya Open.
At 3-under through 13 holes, Gandas seemed to be rising well up the leaderboard before he fell back due to a hat-trick of bogeys. He did manage to finish under par at 1-under 70 and has one more round to make up in the DP World Tour event.
Gandas earned his way into the DP World Tour via a strategic alliance between the DP World Tour and PGTI, where he topped the Order of Merit.
Gandas birdied the first, sixth and tenth but had bogeys on 14th, 15th and 16th before finding a birdie on 17th.
Gandas’ friend and fellow Indian Shubhankar Sharma missed the cut.
Jorge Campillo carded the joint-lowest round of the tournament to take a one-stroke lead into the final round.
Vani and Pranavi finish strongly in Top-20 in Women’s South African Open
Vani Kapoor and Pranavi Urs had a creditable finish inside Top-20 in the 2023 Investec South African Women’s Open at Steenberg Golf Club.
Vani, who was in Top-10 after three rounds, did manage a final round of 1-under 71, but slipped from overnight tied-eighth to tied 12th at 8-under total.
Meanwhile, Pranavi shot her best round of the week with an action-packed back nine. Pranavi shot 69 and finished 7-under to be tied 16th.
The 2022 AIG Women’s Open champion, Ashleigh Buhai, fired a final round of 68 (-4) to win the 2023 Investec South African Women’s Open at Steenberg Golf Club, here on Saturday.
The South African superstar had held a four-shot lead since the midway mark and maintained that advantage on the final day.
Buhai rolled in six birdies and two bogeys on the fourth day of competition to seal her fifth LET title with a score of 22-under-par and win this tournament for the fourth time. Spain’s Ana Pelaez Trivino finished second, while Chiara Noja was third.
Vani, needing a fast start to make a bid for a higher finish, managed only one birdie and one bogey on the front nine and on the back nine she had two birdies against one bogey.
Pranavi parred her first seven holes before she bogeyed the Par-5 eighth for the second time this week. She quickly got that shot back with a birdie on the ninth.
The back nine was full of action, as she birdied 10th, 11th and 12th to make it four in a row.
There was a double bogey on Par-4 15th but she birdied the next only to drop a shot on 17th. On the 18th, she landed an eagle and carded 69. The dropped shots late in the round may have robbed a first career Top-10 for Pranavi.
For yet another time, Pelaez Trivino finished in second place on the LET after she produced a round of 68 (-4) on the final day to reach 18-under-par.
It was a flawless day for the LET winner who rolled in birdies on holes five, 10, 12 and 18 to secure her runner-up finish.
Germany’s Chiara Noja ended the tournament in solo third place on 17-under-par after a fourth round of 69 (-3) which included four birdies and one bogey.
Argentina’s Magdalena Simmermacher finished in fourth place on 15-under-par with South Africa’s Kaleigh Telfer in fifth on 11-under-par, while Czechia’s Klara Davidson Spilkova was one shot further back in sixth spot.
Five players finished in a tie for seventh place with France’s Anais Meyssonnier, England’s Gabriella Cowley, South Africa’s Casandra Alexander, Sweden’s Johanna Gustavsson and Italy’s Alessandra Fanali all on nine-under-par.
In the 2023 Race to Costa del Sol, India’s Aditi Ashok continues to lead the way with 1,210 points to her name.
Modest finish for Avani, Nishna as Eila wins WAAP by five shots
Avani Prashanth and Nishna Patel, the two Indians who made the cut at the Women’s Amateur Asia-Pacific Championship (WAAP), ended the event on a rather subdued note with 3-over 75 each on the final day.
Avani, the Queen Sirikit Cup’s individual champion, shot rounds of 73-71-74-75 to total 5-over 289 and finished tied 24th, while Nishna Patel, playing the WAAP for the third time, also carded 75, and with rounds of 71-72-77-75, totalled 7-over 291 to finish tied 35th.
The other four Indians — Anika Varma, Vidhatri Urs, Mannat Brar and Lavanya Jadon — missed the cut.