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Tokyo Olympics 2021: Golfer Aditi Ashok Narrowly Misses Out on Medal, Finishes 4th

It was a heartbreaking end to Aditi Ashok’s Tokyo Olympics campaign considering she started the day in sole second position.

Aditi Ashok
Aditi Ashok, of India, hits a tee shot on the 17th hole during the third round of the women's golf event at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, Aug. 6, 2021, at the Kasumigaseki Country Club in Kawagoe, Japan. (AP/PTI)

India’s Aditi Ashok missed a medal narrowly as she signed off 4th in the Olympic Games’ golf competition after carding a three-under 68 in the weather-hit final round here on Saturday.

The 23-year-old Bengalurean ended two strokes off the pace with a total of 15-under 269, which was just one stroke below the medal bracket. It was a heartbreaking end to Aditi’s campaign considering she started the day in sole second position. But it was nonetheless a massive improvement as she had finished tied 41st in the 2016 edition where golf made a comeback to the Olympics after over 100 years.

In the final round, she fired five birdies — on the 5th, 6th, 8th, 13th and 14th holes — against two bogeys on the 9th and 11th. The world number 200 Indian had her mother Maheshwari as her caddie. Overnight leader and world number one Nelly Korda clinched the gold medal with a 2-under 69 that left her 17-under overall and a shot ahead of Japan’s Mone Inami (65) and New Zealand’s Lydia Ko (65).

Inami and Ko competed in a play-off to decide the silver and bronze medal winners in which the former emerged triumphant. On the play-off hole (par-4 18th), Ko dropped a bogey, while Inami managed to hold on for a par in overcast and damp conditions. Play was disrupted for a while by a tropical storm after the leading pack had completed 16 holes but soon resumed at the par-71 Kasumigaseki Country Club.

Aditi was in medal contention for a major part of the day but the two bogeys pulled her back while Ko surged ahead with a sensational nine birdies against just three dropped shots in her final round. The other Indian in fray, Diksha Dagar, finished her campaign at tied 50th after managing her first sub-par round of the week, a one-under 70, which left her with an aggregate total of 6-over 290.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi lauded Aditi Ashok, saying she may have narrowly missed out on a medal but has gone farther than any Indian and blazed a trail.

“Well played @aditigolf! You have shown tremendous skill and resolve during #Tokyo2020. A medal was narrowly missed but you’ve gone farther than any Indian and blazed a trail. Best wishes for your future endeavours,” Modi tweeted.

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