Golf may be an individual sport most of the time but Anirban Lahiri could not hide his delight for countryman SSP Chawrasia as he was narrowly beaten at the Hero Indian Open.
A year ago home favourite Lahiri overcame a seven-shot deficit on the last day to defeat Chawrasia in a play-off and condemn his opponent to a fourth runners-up finish in his national open.
On Sunday he began four shots back but could not reel in Chawrasia as the 37 year old fired a one under par 71 to finish two shots ahead of Lahiri and South Korea's Jeunghun Wang.
The title was effectively sealed when Chawrasia hit a brilliant approach to the 18th which resulted in a birdie and a round of applause from Lahiri, a wonderful sporting gesture from a man on the brink of losing his title.
I am so happy for SSP. This win is huge for him - Anirban Lahiri
"We were tied for second three years ago, he was second last year and has been second four times at this tournament so it's great for him to win.
"I am really pleased for him."
Lahiri made a birdie-birdie start and when he drained a brilliant 35-footer on the third for another gain to get to 13 under, it looked like it may be his day again. He held a share of the lead when Chawrasia bogeyed the sixth but he would not make any further progress as his compatriot claimed victory.
"It was pretty intense," he said. "I got off to a great start but lost a bit of momentum after that. I gave myself a lot of chances but missed quite few from 15-20 feet.
"At the end of day, SSP hung tough and played very well.
"I made that putt on the third and thought that was a great time to hole a long putt because I hadn't made many this week. I just lost a bit of ground around the turn on eight and nine and then the back nine is so tight. But I enjoyed it nonetheless."
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