Golfers Anirban Lahiri, SSP Chawrasia, and Aditi Ashok to represent India at Rio Olympics

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Golfers Anirban Lahiri, SSP Chawrasia, and Aditi Ashok to represent India at Rio Olympics

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Arun S Kaimal

07/13/2016

India’s premier golfers Anirban Lahiri and SSP Chawrasia will represent India at the upcoming Rio Olympics as the sport makes a return to the quadrennial event after a 112-year gap. In the women’s event, youngster Aditi Ashok also made the cut for Olympics, for which the cut-off date was Monday.

Anirban Lahiri, who is ranked no.62 in the world, was placed 20th in the latest International Golf Federation rankings for Rio, while SSP Chawrasia, ranked 207 in the world, was placed 45th. With the top 60 making the cut for Rio, Lahiri and Chawrasia secured the spot for India at the Olympics.

Lahiri, who is currently the Asia No.1, had enjoyed an exceptional 2015 season with two wins on the European Tour and a phenomenal tied fifth finish at the PGA Championship. He had also become the first Indian to be a part of the International Team at the Presidents Cup, last year. The 29-year-old, winner of seven international titles, will play his ninth successive Major at the British Open at Royal Troon in Scotland this week.

Speaking to PTI after qualifying for Rio, Lahiri said, "Olympian Anirban Lahiri sounds good, but Olympic medallist Anirban Lahiri would sound way better."

Lahiri’s close friend, SSP Chawrasia will also be a part of India’s contingent to the Olympics. Chawrasia has four international titles till date and had won the Indian Open this year to jump into contention for Rio.

“I am excited about having the honour to represent my country at the Olympics. It’s a major milestone for me. I am looking forward to teaming up with my good friend Anirban in Rio. My total focus for the next three weeks is to practice and prepare for the Olympics as I want to give it my best shot,” said Chawrasia, who was not sure whether he would play the Asian Tour event in Thailand in the last week of this month, reported the Hindu.

18-year-old Aditi Ashok will represent India in the women’s event at Rio after she made the cut by coming 58th among the top 60, who have qualified for the Olympics. The Bengaluru girl was a top amateur and had only turned professional on January 1 this year.

“So happy to make it,” tweeted Aditi.

With so many top golfers missing the event due to the threat of Zika Virus, India will have an outside chance to secure a medal in the men’s event at Rio. 

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