Bangladesh's premier golfer Siddikur Rahman narrowly missed out on his third Asian Tour title when he lost against Delhi youngster Rashid Khan in a play-off at the SAIL-SBI Open in New Delhi, India yesterday. The 29-year old golfer, who broke his three-year drought at the Asian Tour by winning the Hero Indian Open at this very golf course last November, came within whiskers of winning his third but eventually was bettered by the flamboyant Delhi native.
“Rashid deserves the win. He's a talented player. It was a good play-off. I played my game but maybe, I should have played a driver. I used my three wood which wasn't sufficient,” said Siddikur, who finished fourth on the Asian Tour's Order of Merit last season.
Siddkur came into the fourth round on 15-under (201) having hit five-unders in the previous three rounds. Rashid on the other hand was leading the pack at 17-under (199), thanks to his magnificent 11-under in the first round. However, Siddikur grabbed the lead early in the morning yesterday and held on to the lead till the 16th hole, before Rashid joined him with a birdie on the 17th hole. Rashid birdied again in the 18th hole while Siddkur too birdied the par-5 18th hole to force the decider into a play-off. But eventually Rashid, who had lost against his compatriot Anirban Lahiri in a play-off last time at this event, held his nerve in the tie-breaker as he birdied the first play-off hole while Siddikur missed the birdie putt.
The win gave the 23-year old Delhi boy his first Asian Tour title and a paycheque of 54,000 dollars while Siddikur had to be content with one of 33,000 dollars. Bangladesh's Jamal Hossain Mollah finished at joint 23rd position with five-under (283) while Shakhawat Hossain Sohel finished at 57th position with two-over (290).