Shubhankar Sharma (23), Gaganjeet Bhullar (31), and SSP Chawrasia (41),
all have tasted success on the European Tour.
While Bhullar became the latest addition to the Indian golfers winning on
the European Tour with his win at the 2018 Fiji International, Shubhankar
Sharma has won twice.
SSP Chawrasia is a four-time winner, whose last win came at the 2017 Hero Indian Open. The year 2019 did not see any win from Indian trio but they made sure that they kept their cards for the upcoming 2020 season. Shubhankar Sharma finished 2019 season 65th on the European Tour’s Race to Dubai Rankings, way ahead of Bhullar and Chawrasia.
SHUBHANKAR ENDS 2019 SEASON ON A HIGH
23-year-old Sharma’s last event of 2019 was the US$ 7 million Turkish Airlines Open (November 7-10) where he finished tied-7th, before finishing tied-56th at the US $7.5 million Nedbank Golf Challenge in South Africa (November 14-17). The Nedbank Golf Challenge was the last event of Sharma’s 2019 season and his tied-56th finish earned him 36 Race to Dubai ranking points, which pushed him to 65th place on those rankings. He needed to finish inside the top-50 to be able to play at the European Tour’s season finale US $ 8 million DP World Tour Championship in Dubai (November 21-24).
Shubhankar Sharma played 23 events in 2019 and made cut at 16 of them, earning US$ 748,889 ( ₹5,37, 92,697) for his efforts and his second successful season on the European Tour.
“King G” to return to European Tour for 2020
31-year-old European Tour player Gaganjeet Bhullar, aka “King G” (as inscribed on his wedges) will be returning for another season on the European Tour in 2020 after finishing 115th on the Race to Dubai Rankings. Bhullar, who currently ranks fifth-best Indian at 294th on the Official World Golf Rankings, has had the maximum wins by an Indian on the Asian Tour. He is one of the hopefuls vying for a chance to represent India at the Tokyo Olympics next year.
Bhullar in 2019
Bhullar, who earned his European Tour playing rights with a wire-to-wire win at the US $862,750 Fiji International in August 2018, played 25 events in 2019. Of these, his best result of solo-fifth came at the US $1.21 million Magical Kenya Open in March.
Bhullar’s second-best performance of Tied-13th came in June at the US $33, 24,345 Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucia Masters hosted by Sergio Garcia Foundation in Spain. A week prior to Spain, Bhullar played the US$2.2 million BMW International Open in Germany (June 20-23), where he aced the par-3 17th from 204 yards on June 21st (second-round) to win the BMW M8 Coupe worth US$2,15,000.
Bhullar played 25 events, made 16 cuts He had a month-long break from golf due to a pulled hamstring before he returned to India for the Panasonic Open in November.
Bhullar, excited for what is to come, says, “I’m pretty happy with my season, this was my second return on the European Tour and extending my card was a goal I was looking forward to, and now that I have done that, I would like to finish 2020 on even better note and lookout to improve my OWGR ranking.”
Bhullar’s 2019 performance earned him the 115th spot on the Race to Dubai Rankings and total earnings of US $331,065 — just enough points to retain and extend his European Tour journey for the 2020 season.
Chawrasia makes a case for himself
SSP Chawrasia, who has over 12 years of experience on the European Tour with four titles, finished solo-fourth at the European Tour Q-school Finals to regain his 2020 playing rights.
The 41-year-old Chawrasia, among 156 hopefuls to finish inside the Top-25 to earn a card. He shot rounds of 69, 66, 71, 67, 69, and 69 for a total score of 411, to finish solo-fourth, thereby sealing his 2020 card.
Chawrasia, playing his fourth round, even managed to ace the par-3 fourth hole and win the BMW i8 Roadster, worth US $164,300.