Rayong, Thailand: Young Indian golfer Viraj Madappa on Sunday finished tied 29th at the 2018 Asian Tour Qualifying Schools Final Stage to earn his maiden Asian Tour card in only his second season as a professional.

The 21-year-old, who became the 2017 PGTI Emerging Player of the Year, posted an even-par 71 in the fifth and final round of the Final Stage at the Rayong Green Valley Country Club to total three-under 352 (73-67-69-72-71) for the week.

He, thus, finished inside the top-35 and ties for the week to claim his Asian Tour card.

Viraj, who as a rookie had six top-10s on the PGTI last year including a runners-up finish, made three birdies and three bogeys in the last round that saw him slip five spots from his overnight tied 24th.

Nonetheless, Madappa’s final round performance was good enough for him to not only secure his card but also end up as the highest-placed Indian at the event.

The Kolkata-based golfer had been one of India’s leading amateurs prior to turning…

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