Golfer Chikka prepares for Manila Championship

Manila, April 12 (IANS) India’s rising golfer S. Chikka is planning to come out with all guns blazing when he takes aim at a third win on the Asian Development Tour (ADT) and the first outside India at the ICTSI Manila Southwoods Championship which starts on Wednesday.

The 22-year-old Indian, placed third on the Order of Merit following three top-10s in four starts this season, will be joined by a host of ADT champions, including American John Michael O’Toole, Gavin Green of Malaysia and Itthipat Buranatanyarat of Thailand.

Two-time ADT winner Janne Kaske of Finland, Australian Jake Stirling, Sean Riordan of New Zealand, Japan’s Shunya Takeyasu and James Byrne of Scotland will also make up the truly cosmopolitan field of players from over 18 countries in the $60,000 ADT event.

They will face off against a strong local challenge spearheaded by Asian Tour winner Miguel Tabuena, highest ranked Filipino in 110th on the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR), as well as Jay Bayron, Elmer Salvador and Antonio Lascuna, who will be playing on his home course this week.

“The course is in a great shape. I played the pro-am tournament today and I just love how the course is playing right now with fast greens and top class fairways. I have been playing good and I am hitting the ball well. I am hoping for another good week ahead,” said Chikkarangappa in an Asian Tour release.

Despite missing out on his win in Chinese Taipei two weeks ago where he stayed bogey-free for 63 holes before settling for third place, Chikka remained hopeful of riding on his recent run of good form to mount another title challenge at the Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club’s legends course.

“I played really well in Chinese Taipei but I guess luck was just not on my side. I never thought things like that will happen especially when you are playing well but now, I have learnt that it’s not over until you sink your last putt. It was a good experience and I took the positives from that week,” added the Bengaluru golfer.

The ICTSI Manila Southwoods Championship is the 10th leg of the 2016 ADT season and also the start of the Tour’s two-week swing in the Philippines. The ICTSI Sherwood Hills Classic will take place at the Sherwood Hills Golf Club from April 20-23 next week.

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