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Gujarat Kensville Challenge features strongest ever field

Ahmedabad: The third edition of the Gujarat Kensville Challenge golf will see the strongest ever field as both the Indian Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) and European Challenge season for 2013 season tees off here today.

The Kensville Challenge which has now become the regular season-opener for both the Tours will for the first time feature a Major champion, Rich Beem, who won the 2002 PGA Championships winner, ahead of Tiger Woods.

The stellar field also includes a bunch of former European Tour winners, from Rhys Davies to Raymond Russell, Jose-Phillipe Lima and Daniel Vanscik.

Rich Beem. AFP

Rich Beem. AFP

There is a also a group of Asian Tour winners, like the 2011 Kensville winner, Gaganjeet Bhullar (4 wins), Shiv Kapur, Rahil Gangjee, Himmat Rai and old warhorse, Gaurav Ghei (3 wins).

Scott Barr is a surprise entrant, having last played in the Challenge Tour back in 2008. He is now a regular on Asian Tour. The other player, who makes his maiden appearance in Kensville is Terry Pilkadaris, a former three-time winner on Asian Tour, who now plays on OneAsia.

Two other youngsters, who could make an impact on international golf in the near future, who make a return to Kensville after making their debut here last year, are An Byeong-hun and Peter Uihlein, the 2009 and 2010 US Amateur champions, who turned pro in 2011 and played Challenge Tour in 2012.

Adding to the excitement is a bunch of young Indians, who are turning pro with this event.

Led by two-time Indian amateur champion, Seenappa Chikkrangappa, Angad Cheema, the reigning Indian amateur champion, 16-year-old Shubhankar Sharma, Khalin Joshi and Honey Baisoya. This lot is hoping to play the Indian PGTI Tour and then gradually move to Asian and higher Tours.

IANS