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Price of persistence: India’s Aditi revels in maiden Magical Kenya Ladies Open title



Price of persistence: India’s Aditi revels in maiden Magical Kenya Ladies Open title

KILIFI, Kenya, Feb 5 – Newly-crowned Magical Kenya Ladies Open champion Aditi Ashok reveals she had to go through a thorough training regime in her off-season ahead of the opening leg of the Ladies European Tour (LET) at Vipingo Ridge in Kilifi.

The Indian maintained her opening day superior form in the final round to clinch the third edition of the prestigious tournament and make up for her disappointment in 2019 when she missed out on the title by a whisker.

Ashok was over the moon that the hard work in training had paid off handsomely – a prize money of Kes 6 million to be exact.

“It has been a great week and I think it has proven that my off-season and hard work has paid off this week. I just kept hitting fairways and greens. I think the last few holes I didn’t make very many good swings but it’s all good, I guess,” she said.

Ashok, who has now won four times in the LET – following her successes at the Hero Women’s Indian Open and Qatar Ladies Open (both 2016) and FBM Ladies Open in 2017 – further said the win signals her return to peak form that had somewhat dipped.

Magical Kenya Ladies Open champion Aditi Ashok is presented with her prize money by First Lady Rachel Ruto and Dirk Glittenbergr. PHOTO/COURTESY

“I have worked a lot with my coach and my fitness team back home together with whom we have put in a lot of work over two months, just to get back to my original strength level and I think this week I feel I have gotten back to where I was maybe a couple of years ago, and I think it is pretty good,” she said.

Tied for second were Thailand’s April Angurasaranee and Englishwoman Alice Hewson.

April carded 36 on the front nine courtesy of birdies at the par-5 2nd and the par-5 6th and having dropped a shot at the par-4 5th.

The 18-year-old had a less-than-ideal back nine where she opened with a double-bogey at the 10th and holed a series of bogeys at the par-4 13th, the par-4 16th and the par-3 17th for a back nine total of 41.

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Alice carded 36 on the front nine with birdies at the 2nd, 7th and 9th holes and having dropped shots at the 4th and 6th holes.

On the back nine, she was out with 36 courtesy of birdies at the 11th, 17th and 18th holes and back-to-back bogeys at the 14th, 15th  and 16th.

Immediate former defending champion, Germany’s Esther Henseleit, was hoping for a third consecutive Magical Kenya Ladies Open title but saw her aspirations billow up in smoke at the world-class PGA Baobab Golf Course when she closed her campaign with a score of 78, taking her total for the event to four-over par, 296.

The two-time champion was tied in 17th place.

The final round was graced by First Lady, Rachel Ruto, who was accompanied by Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba, and his counterpart for Tourism, Wildlife and Heritage, Penina Malonza.

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