India’s Aditi Ashok sustained supreme form in the final round of the 2023 Magical Kenya Ladies Open on the PGA Baobab Course at Vipingo Ridge to win the third edition of the tournament.
She played a solid round of 74, taking her total for the tournament to 12-under par 280, a phenomenal nine shots ahead of her nearest challenger.
She was out in 37 on the front nine courtesy of a birdie at the par-4 1st and having dropped a shot at the par-3 8th where she found the water off the tee.
She was steady in the back nine, closing with a 37 courtesy of a birdie at the par-5 11th and having dropped shots at the par-5 15th and the short par-3 17th.
Aditi made her intentions clear early in the tournament when she opened her challenge with an emphatic score of 67 – four clear of the next golfer.
And if her opening round was emphatic, her second, where she carded 70, was solid. Her third round, where she ended the day with a round of 69, was steady and the final round completed her 4-day streak of stellar performance.
The 24-year-old came into the tournament with the disappointment of 2019 still fresh in her mind where she came agonizingly close to winning the inaugural Magical Kenya Ladies Open, only to finish second behind Esther Henseleit by one shot.
Speaking after clinching the win, Aditi said:
“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. 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.
“It was cool and different, all part of the experience of playing in Kenya to see giraffes (on the course). I don’t think I have ever seen giraffes that close before.”
Today’s win takes her win tally in the Ladies European Tour to four, with her first and second wins in November 2016 at the Hero Women’s Indian Open and at Qatar Ladies Open. She won her third at the FBM Ladies Open in November 2017.
Finishing tied in second place was eighteen-year-old April Angurasaranee from Thailand who ended her campaign with a total score of 3-under par, 289, to mark her best finish at a Ladies European Tour tournament. She shared runner-up honours with Englishwoman Alice Hewson who carded 70 on the final day to match the overall 3-under-par score.
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. She 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.