Young Thai talent Jazz Janewattananond cruised to his maiden Asian Tour victory after closing with a flawless four-under-par 67 to win by four shots at the US$300,000 Bashundhara Bangladesh Open on Saturday.
The 21-year-old Thai, who started the round with a four-shot advantage, showed nerves of steel as he completed a sensational wire-to-wire victory at the Kurmitola Golf club with a winning total of 17-under-par 267.
Jazz was delighted to get his career back on track after failing to keep his Asian Tour card for the first time in his career last season where he finished 63rd on the Order of Merit. He returned to the Qualifying School last month but did not manage to secure his card.
Home hero Siddikur Rahman flew his country’s flag high in his National Open where he emerged as the best-placed local player in second place following a 66 in what is the third leg of the Asian Tour schedule this season.
American Dodge Kemmer secured his best finish on the Asian Tour after returning with a 68 to take third place on his own on 273.
Thailand’s Panuphol Pittayarat, who turns 24 years old today, produced an impressive back nine 32 en route to a solid 67 to share fourth place on 274 with countryman Rattanon Wannasrichan (68) as well as Indian duo Chiragh Kumar (68) and Shubhankar Sharma (70).
Interesting facts of the day:
- Jazz is the second Thai following Thitiphun Chuayprakong in 2016 to win the Bashundhara Bangladesh Open since its inception two years ago.
- Jazz’s winning margin of four shots is the largest in the tournament history. Singapore’s Mardan Mamat and Thitiphun won the event by two shots in 2015 and 2016.
- Jazz will take home a winner’s prize purse of US$54,000 courtesy of his victory. He will also be afforded with a one-year winner’s exemption on the Asian Tour.
- Siddikur’s runner-up finish is the best result produced by a local player in the tournament history.
- Kemmer’s third place result is his best finish on the Asian Tour since plying his trade on the region’s premier Tour in 2012. His previous record was a tied-sixth finish at the 2016 Indonesian Open.
- Rattanon also enjoyed his best finish on the Asian Tour after finishing tied-fourth. His previous record was a tied-fifth result at the 2016 Macao Open.
- Siddikur’s elder brother Rafiqul is on his bag this week.
- Qualifying School graduate Sihwan Kim enjoyed a second straight top-10 finish on the Asian Tour this season. He finished tied-ninth in Myanmar last week and eighth on his own in Bangladesh this week.
Jazz JANEWATTANANOND (THA) – Final Round 67 (-4), Total 267 (-17)
A lot of things were going through my head walking down the 18th hole. I have been in the lead for the last couple of times but just not being able to get the job done. I am glad I finally did it today.
I was in contention in India but I shot seven-over on the last day and stumbled down the leaderboard. I lost the play-off in the ADT event in Thailand last December too.
I wasn’t disappointed actually because I know my chance will come soon. I just accepted my results as it is. You got to learn to handle the pressure somehow. I guess those setbacks helped in my game. The win came sooner than I thought.
I have been waiting for this win for so long. I started playing on the Asian Tour when I was an amateur at 14. It’s just a huge relief that I managed to get the job done. It wasn’t easy. I took a step back as I lost my card for the first time in my career last season. I didn’t make the mark at Qualifying School too.
I didn’t get much sleep last night to be honest. Even though I had a four-shot lead, I still wasn’t comfortable heading out today. I think this is the longest 18 holes that I have played in my life. I am happy that I am through it. I had a very good round. I wish my parents are here with me right now.
I was just hoping for a solid round. My target was to shoot a three or four-under. I am very happy I did it. It was really a solid round. Everything was good. I made peace with pressure.
Siddikur RAHMAN (BAN) – Final Round 66 (-5), Total 271 (-13)
It has been a long time since I last played so well. It was a great round and a superb week. I am really thankful to get such a huge crowd following me on my home course on the last day. I am happy with how I played too.
I struggled with food poisoning earlier this week so to finish second here, I have no complaints. I stayed at home to recuperate earlier this week so I didn’t get much preparation. I am glad I was able to recover in time for the tournament.
I was just playing for par on the 18. I heard Dodge was at 11-under-par in third so I thought I just needed a par to keep my second place. But I made a birdie there. It’s my favourite hole here.
It has been an excellent week. I am truly appreciative. My parents were out here supporting me today and I have my brother Rafiqul on my bag too.
Dodge KEMMER (USA) – Final Round 68 (-3), Total 273 (-11)
This is my best finish on the Asian Tour. I am really happy. I had a really good two-iron on five and seven to make birdies. I managed to get it going on the back. I started feeling very good with my putter. I made a couple of putts on the back, including a 25-feet birdie on 12.
Finishing third in my first Asian Tour event this season, it’s obviously a good start for me. I didn’t have any status and I am happy I didn’t give myself too much pressure this week.
I was four-over through 10 when I started out in the tournament. I didn’t feel like I was playing like that. I managed to go 15-under in the next 62 holes so I am really pleased with the way I turned the game around.
The course doesn’t really suit me. I am used to hitting a lot of drivers and irons on longer courses so to come here and play well, hitting two or three drivers a day, it’s a new experience for me.
Panuphol PITTAYARAT (THA) – Final Round 67 (-4), Total 274 (-10)
Shooting four-under on the final day and on the fourth of February, which is my birthday, I had to be very happy. I have been playing bad on the third day in the last few weeks. I am happy to recover with a good round today. I have been hitting the ball good the whole week.
I think I tried to push myself too much on the third day. But today, I went out there with no expectations. It’s my birthday too so I was feeling happy. I was just trying to have fun and enjoy myself out there. I didn’t want to feel stressed on my birthday.
I am happy with my good result. I gave myself a lot of chances, especially on the back nine. I rolled quite a few putts on the back and I took advantage of the par-fives. I had a really solid back nine. Hopefully I can continue this good form into next week.
Scores after round 4 of the Bashundhara Bangladesh Open 2017 being played at the par 71, 6637 Yards Kurmitola GC course (am – denotes amateur):
267 – Jazz JANEWATTANANOND (THA) 64-67-69-67.
271 – Siddikur RAHMAN (BAN) 71-66-68-66.
273 – Dodge KEMMER (USA) 73-64-68-68.
274 – Panuphol PITTAYARAT (THA) 66-68-73-67, Rattanon WANNASRICHAN (THA) 70-64-72-68, Chiragh KUMAR (IND) 68-70-68-68, Shubhankar SHARMA (IND) 64-68-72-70.
275 – Sihwan KIM (USA) 70-69-68-68.
276 – Khalin JOSHI (IND) 69-70-71-66.
277 – LIU Yan-wei (CHN) 69-70-71-67, Peradol PANYATHANASEDH (THA) 70-69-71-67, Udayan MANE (IND) 71-68-68-70.
278 – Rashid KHAN (IND) 73-67-70-68, Richard T. LEE (CAN) 74-65-67-72.
279 – Niall TURNER (IRL) 71-72-68-68, Dulal HOSSAIN (BAN) 71-70-68-70.
280 – Mardan MAMAT (SIN) 72-69-68-71, Nicolas PAEZ (USA) 69-72-67-72.
281 – Micah Lauren SHIN (USA) 69-72-74-66.
282 – Simon GRIFFITHS (ENG) 71-70-73-68, Sutijet KOORATANAPISAN (THA) 70-68-74-70, Panuwat MUENLEK (THA) 72-71-69-70, Settee PRAKONGVECH (THA) 74-68-70-70, Brett MUNSON (USA) 74-66-69-73.