Olympian Udayan Mane top draw at PGTI Players Championship

Olympian Udayan Mane will be among the top players that will be teeing off in the TATA Steel PGTI Players Championship at Panchkula Golf Club on Wednesday.

Besides Mane, who participated in the Tokyo Olympics recently, Rashid Khan, Khalin Joshi, Chikkarangappa, PGTI Order of Merit leader Karandeep Kochhar, defending champion Akshay Sharma are other top players in contention in the tournament that has an enhanced prize purse of Rs. 50 lakh this year.

The foreign names in the field include the Bangladesh duo of Md Zamal Hossain Mollah and Badal Hossain as well as Digraj Singh Gill who is an American national of Indian origin.

The PGTI Players Championship, being held at the scenic Panchkula Golf Club for the third year in succession, will be the second event of the Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI)since the resumption of the 2020-21 season, which had a forced break of six months due to the pandemic.

The event will also feature other Indian pros like Viraj Madappa, Manu Gandas (winner on the PGTI event at Hyderabad last week), and Aadil Bedi. Chandigarh golfers Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, Harendra Gupta, Abhijit Singh Chadha, Amrit Lal, Ranjit Singh, Ravi Kumar, Jairaj Singh Sandhu, Amritinder Singh, and Harmeet Kahlon as well as Panchkula’s Angad Cheema, Martendeya Kanishka Sinha, Rajiv Kumar Jatiwal, and Rajesh Kumar will be hoping to make the most of the opportunity.

“We’re excited to hold the TATA Steel PGTI Players Championship at the PGC. Notwithstanding the extended monsoon, we are providing outstanding playing conditions which professional golfers will enjoy. Interestingly, there’s a slice of Indian golfing history associated with the PGC as Indian stars Anirban Lahiri and Gaganjeet Bhullar both won their maiden professional events at the PGC back in 2009,” Col. A S Dhillon, GM, Panchkula Golf Club, said.

Uttam Singh Mundy, CEO, PGTI, said, “The PGTI thanks the Govt. of Haryana and the Panchkula Golf Club (PGC) for supporting its initiative of getting the tour back on track after a forced six-month break due to the pandemic. The TATA Steel PGTI Players Championship, an event being staged in Panchkula for the third year in succession, promises a fascinating week of golf thanks to the excellent playing conditions provided by the PGC.”

Defending champion Akshay Sharma, who is currently 10th in the PGTI Order of Merit with three top-10s in the season so far, was confident of doing well this year too. “I’m really looking forward to this week as I have good memories of my win at this venue last year. Even though the Chandigarh Golf Club is my home course, the Panchkula Golf Club is also like a home course to me because I practice here quite often and know the conditions well. I’m therefore confident of a good performance this week despite not playing too well last week in Hyderabad,” he said.