Malaysia’s Gavin Green stood on the verge of claiming his first professional win when he carded a blistering six-under-par 66 to lead by one shot following the penultimate round of the PGM Northport Glenmarie Championship on Friday.
The 22-year-old Malaysian, who started the round with a two-shot advantage, kept his momentum going in the race by firing nine birdies against three bogeys for a three-day total of 14-under-par 202 at the Glenmarie Golf and Country Club’s garden course.
His playing partner Chikkarangappa S. of India lurked in second following a 67 while Indonesia’s Danny Masrin registered a 66 to move into third place with Pavit Tangkamolprasert (68) of Thailand on 206 in the RM200,000 (approximately US$46,600) event.
Japan’s Shunya Takeyasu and local hope Mohd Iylia Jamil stayed a further three shots back in fifth following respective rounds of 68 and 71 at the PGM Northport Glenmarie Championship, which is the fifth leg of the Asian Development Tour (ADT) schedule this season.
Green, who joined the play-for-pay ranks last June, started superbly with three straight birdies before dropping a shot on fourth. He recovered strongly with five birdies over the next eight holes but stumbled with another bogey on 13. He went on to add another birdie on 16 but gave the shot back after closing with a bogey.
“I played alright although I made a couple of silly mistakes. I got off to a good start and I think that gave me some momentum heading into the round. My putting was solid. I guess that was the key for me today,” said Green, who finished second in the last edition.
Green is bracing himself for a challenging final day, especially with an in-form Chikkarangappa snapping on his heels, and is determined not to take his lead lightly heading into the all-important final round.
“It was fun playing with Chikkarangappa and Pavit today. We were just trying to make lots of birdies and feeding off one another out there. It’s going to be the same game for me tomorrow. Nothing will change,” added Green.
Green burst onto the scene in 2014 when he became the first amateur to win on the region’s burgeoning Tour which was inaugurated as a gateway to the premier Asian Tour in 2010.
With the Olympic Games looming this July where golf will be reintroduced as a medal sport, players in the region could earn their spots in Rio de Janeiro by earning Official World Golf Ranking points through the Asian Tour and ADT.
For more information on the ADT, please visit www.asiandevelopmenttour.com
Leading third round results:
202 – Gavin GREEN (MAS) 65 71 66
203 – Chikkarangappa S. (IND) 64 72 67
206 – Danny MASRIN (INA) 68 72 66, Pavit TANGKAMOLPRASERT (THA) 66 72 68
209 – Shunya TAKEYASU (JPN) 68 73 68, Mohd Iylia JAMIL (MAS) 67 71 71
210 – George GANDRANATA (INA) 72 69 69, John CATLIN (USA) 70 71 69
211 – R. Nachimuthu (MAS) 69 72 70, Sorachut HANSAPIBAN (THA) 71 70 70, LOW Khai Jei (MAS) 70 70 71, Jakraphan PREMSIRIGORN (THA) 69 72 70, Sam CYR (USA) 73 67 71, Kevin TECHAKANOKBOON (THA) 68 74 69
212 – Thammanoon SRIROJ (THA) 70 71 71, Nirun SAE-UENG (THA) 69 71 72, KHOR Kheng Hwai (MAS) 71 71 70, Ben LEONG (MAS) 70 72 70, Clarke LUTTON (SCO) 68 71 73, Itthipat BURANATANYARAT (THA) 70 72 70
213 – Phachara KHONGWATMAI (THA) 67 74 72, Masaru TAKAHASHI (JPN) 71 72 70