Rahil Gangjee wins Panasonic Open
Rahil Gangjee’s winless streak of 14 years finally comes to an end after his win by a shot over the South Korean duo of Hyungsung Kim and Junggon Hwan culminated at the 2018 Panasonic Open Championship at the Chiba Country Club’s Umesato Course.
Rahil Gangjee wins Panasonic Open for his second Asian Tour Title and becomes only the second non-Japanese player to win in the ten-year history of Panasonic Open (started in 2008) when it was known as the Asia-Pacific Panasonic Open until 2013.
Before Gangjee, Shiv Kapur had the longest winless streak of 12 years, which ended at the Yeangder Heritage Championship in May 2017.
Gangjee shot three-under-68 for the final round including a final hole birdie on the 18th to fend off any possible charges from Kim. Gangjee’s winning score stood at 14-under-270.
Another player to win was the Australian Brendan Jones in 2010, with a winning score of 207 (-6) at the Rokko Kokusai Golf Club’s East Course.
— Asian Tour (@asiantourgolf) April 22, 2018
Gangjee entered the final round a shot back from the overnight leader Hyungsung Kim at 12-under-201, posting a birdie on his second hole and dropping two shots with bogeys on par-3 fifth and par-4 seventh for a 1-over-36 on his front nine, things changed for him after the turn when he fired three back to back birdies from 12th through 14th and aided it with another one on the last for 4-under-32 on his last nine.
Gangjee was looking for a win since his last win in 2004 at the Volkswagen China Masters in a playoff against Mo Joong-Kyung and with this win, his Asian Tour Order of Merit is surely going to take a huge leap upwards.
Junggon Hwang was a tough one on Sunday with a round of five-under-66 he was almost certain for the big win, but a bogey on par-4 16th halted his progress despite two consecutive birdies on 17th and 18th holes, kept him short of a shot from Gangjee.
The third round leader Hyungsung Kim joined Hwang for a share of the second position on the board at 13-under-271 with one-under-70 today.
Katayama, the opening round co-leader finished the event for a T-14th position at 8-under-276 with Yuta Ikeda, Toshinori Muto, Nicholas Fung, Kyungnam Kang, and Miguel Tabuena.
Rikuya Hoshino, co-led the opening round and had a lone lead on Friday, on Sunday he fell short of four-strokes from the winner Rahil Gangjee. Hoshino is joined by Yuki Inamori, Ajeetesh Sandhu, and Ben Leong at 9-under-275 for a share of the tenth position on the board.
Indians at the event
After a good run on Saturday SSP Chawrasia, Arjun Atwal, and Shiv Kapur, all saw a downfall in their rankings on the board with rounds of 73, 75, and 75 respectively. Chawrasia stood T-40th at three-under-281, Atwal stood T-44th at 2-under-282, and Kapur managed to remain at level-par-284 with the score.