Anirban Lahiri keeps top-50 in sight before year end

Anirban Lahiri felt that he had two bad Sundays in a row at CIMB Classic and the CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in Korea.

By: PTI | Published: October 23, 2017 10:27 pm
Anirban Lahiri, cimb classic, PGA Championships, CJ Cup Anirban Lahiri is aiming to be in top-50 by the end of the year so that he is assured of starting at all the Majors. (Source: File)

Two top-10 finishes have helped India’s star golfer Anirban Lahiri get closer to his target of making it to top-50 of the Official
World rankings by the year-end.

The 30-year-old Indian, who was 68th at the end of the FedExCup, has moved to 58th after two events. Lahiri felt that he had two bad Sundays in a row at CIMB Classic and the CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in Korea.

A top-5 was well within his grasp at CIMB and in CJ Cup, and he actually had a share of the lead on the back nine, but a bad finish over last five holes saw him drop to tied-5th. Yet he has given himself a good start for the new 2017-18 season.

“It is always nice to get a good start in the Fall Season. I will have two more events in the US and I hope to continue the trend,” he said. “It has been two disappointing Sundays in a row but I am trending in the right direction. So I am hopeful of things at
Shriners Hospital Open,” he added.

Lahiri is aiming to be in top-50 by the end of the year so that he is assured of starting at all the Majors, which is what he did in 2015 and played all Majors in 2016.

Since he dropped at the end of 2016, Lahiri missed the Masters and US Open, but did get to play the (British) Open and the PGA Championships. In two starts at Kuala Lumpur and Jeju Islands, Lahiri has earned around USD 477,000 and has 160 FedExCup points.

Other events on his schedule are the Shriners Hospital Open in Nevada, Las Vegas and the OHL Mayakoba in Mexico. Justin Thomas, who grabbed the 2016 CIMB Classic from Lahiri, has in the past year surged to the very highest levels. The last 12 months saw him win six times, including once at a Major, the PGA Championships at Quail Hollow.

He was also a part of the Presidents Cup team and at the end of the season won the FedExCup, to emerge as the Player of the Year for 2017. Elsewhere Gaganjeet Bhullar won the Macao Open and moved to 155th in World Rankings and is now second best Indian after Lahiri.

SSP Chawrasia is third at 266 while Ajeetesh Sandhu, who is having a great run with a win in Taiwan, a win in Japan Challenge Tour event, where there were no World Ranking points, was tied-second at Macao.

The second place finish has seen him rise to 290. At the end of 2016, Sandhu was ranked way down at 1866th place. He was third at Take Solutions in Bangalore on Asian Tour in August and has been in good form since. With a win in Taiwan, he is now exempt for the full schedule.

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