Anirban Lahiri 25th in World Cup; Jason Day wins title

PTI| Updated: Nov 24, 2013, 18:34 PM IST

Melbourne: Indian golfer Anirban Lahiri carded a decent one-over 72 in the final round on what was yet another tough day at the USD 8 million ISPS HANDA World Cup of Golf here on Sunday.

Lahiri finished with a four-day total of three-over 287 and in tied 25th place and picked up USD 56,000 for his effort at the Royal Melbourne Golf Course here.

His teammate Gaganjeet Bhullar finally came to terms with the Golf Course this week with a round of even par 71 after three irksome rounds on first three days.

Bhullar was 14-over for the week and was 60th and last but still took home USD 20,000.

Home hero Jason Day secured an emotional victory a week after losing eight members of his family in Typhoon Haiyan. He delighted the large crowds including his mother Denning by seeing off Denmark`s Thomas Bjorn by two strokes.

Day`s closing round of 70 for a 10-under par aggregate total, allied to his team-mate Adam Scott`s seven-under par score, also meant that Australia were crowned World Cup of Golf winners for the fifth time, beating the American team of Matt Kuchar and Kevin Streelman by ten shots.

India finished 26th and last in the team Championships.

"It`s a tough test on any day at Royal Melbourne but today was toughest day of the week, wind wise. It really got up, especially on the back nine which was tough to control the ball," said Lahiri.

The 27-year-old Lahiri, a three-time Asian Tour winner, added, "It`s been a very good week, a very positive week. My first time out here, a big learning curve on new conditions and very different to what we play on.

"To represent India for the first time as a professional was fantastic. I hope to play in more World Cups as there are a lot of good Indians out there. We have to continue to play a high level of golf to keep myself in the top few to get selected for events like this. I hope there will be many more to come.

"This is what we work towards to, to get to the World Cup and the Majors. I look forward to playing in more events like this."

Bhullar was disappointed that he did not feature prominently in the World Cup especially after he had high hopes following his strong outing in the Australian Masters in the previous week.

"Last week and this week, the ball striking has been absolutely the same. It was all down to the putting, the ball is not going into the hole, just taking extra shots to get in the hole. This week was totally different," lamented Bhullar, a four-time winner in Asia.

"Last week, I played really solid and thought I would repeat it this week. I think it was lot to do with the overconfidence from last week`s top-10.

"I sat down with my family over dinner last night and we were thinking about what went wrong. A lot of key factors which I thought would not disturb me got me. It`s a good lesson. I will have to be more patient and not be result oriented and keep to the process and routine."

Thailand`s Kiradech Aphibarnrat finished equal fifth in the individual category. Tied with Japan`s Ryo Ishikawa as the top Asian finishers, Kiradech, who currently leads the Asian Tour`s Order of Merit, ended his impressive campaign with a battling one-under 70 and a three-under 271 aggregate.

It was Kiradech`s third top-five finish over the past two months, which included a third place finish at the CIMB Classic in Malaysia.

"Finishing top five again, I`m happy," said the burly Thai, who earned USD 270,000 for his second World Cup appearance. "I tried to shoot under par every day. To finish three under on a course like this, I`m very happy."

With the swirling winds and lightning-quick greens posing a stern test, Kiradech was only one of 11 players who completed the week under par.

Day collected a total of USD 1.5million, USD 1.2million for winning the individual event, and a further USD 300,000 for the team competition ? for the biggest victory of his career.