Monday, November 29, 1999

Big victory for Chikka

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Bangalore's Chikkarangappa completed a resounding six-stroke win at the HP Asian Pacific Junior Golf Championship on Sunday. With a final-round of four-under 68, Chikka totalled 16-under 272 for the tournament at the Eagleton Golf Resort, a personal best for him. Chinese Taipei's Teng Kao finished in second place, while Thai player Poom Saksanin was one stroke further back.Chikka's efforts, however, were not good enough to propel India to the team title, as Thailand — made up of Nattawat Suwajanakorn, Pariwat Pinasawat, Rattanon Wannasrichan and Saksansin — pocketed the team trophy by a comfortable margin of 11 shots, with the hosts finishing as runners-up.The 16-year-old Chikka, who had started the day in a three-shot lead, was quickly put on alert mode as the advantage was cut down by one on the first hole. But he quickly brushed any fears aside with birdies on the fourth, sixth and eighth holes."It is just wonderful to win this title. To miss out on the team championship was disappointing but I played very well today and bettered my best ever four-day total by three shots," Chikka said later. The Bangalore boy added, however, that he had already trained his eyes on the next target: "I want to make it to the Indian team for the Asian Games and hopefully win a gold."

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