A refreshed Pavit Tangkamolprasert hopes to launch a worthy challenge for a record sixth Asian Development Tour (ADT) victory when he steps up to the tee at the PGM Penang Championship on Wednesday.
The 27-year-old Thai, who enjoyed a week’s break at home, is determined to be the player with most number of ADT wins as he is currently tied on five titles alongside Chan Shih-chang of Chinese Taipei.
Pavit, currently the top player on the Order of Merit, will lead 15 tournament winners to the Penang Golf Club which will host the RM200,000 (approximately US$46,600) ADT event.
With one victory and three other top-five results this season, Pavit is ready to challenge for more honours after resting at home and taking time off from golf.
“I think I have played too much golf in the past few months. To be able to rest at home last week is just great. The game’s feeling good and I feel very fresh now,” said Pavit, who won the ADT Order of Merit in 2014.
“This is a very tight course. It’s going to be very tricky. Your tee shots have to be good. If you can hit it straight off the tee, you should have a good chance to score,” Pavit added.
A victory this week will help him edge closer to becoming the first player to win the Order of Merit twice on the region’s burgeoning Tour, which was inaugurated in 2010 as a gateway to the premier Asian Tour.
Malaysia’s Gavin Green, who trails Pavit by slightly less than US$3,000 in second place on the money list, will spearhead the local charge alongside Danny Chia and Nicholas Fung, both multiple winners on the region’s burgeoning Tour.
Green, who moved up one spot to 59th on the Olympic rankings following a tied-fourth finish last week, will continues his hunt for a third victory of the season to secure his Asian Tour card for the remainder of 2016 and strengthen his bid for an Olympic berth this August.
The 22-year-old Green will join countryman Chia, placed 47th, in Rio de Janeiro from August 11 to 14 should he remain inside top-60 on the Olympic rankings after the qualifying cut-off on July 11.
Thai duo Itthipat Buranatanyarat and Suradit Yongcharoenchai, placed third and fifth on the money list, will also be part of the elite 112-man cast from 18 countries vying for honours at the PGM Penang Championship, which is the Tour’s second stop in Penang this season.
Other notable players in the field include George Gandranata of Indonesia, Scotland’s James Byrne, American John Michael O’Toole and Chinese Taipei’s Lin Wen-ko and Hsieh Chi-hsien, who finished second on the Order of Merit last season.
The ADT, which was inaugurated in 2010 as the gateway to the premier Asian Tour, will reward the top-five finishers on the Order of Merit at the end of this season with Asian Tour cards for 2017.
The winner of the PGM Penang Championship will receive six Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) points while the top six players and ties will also earn points based on a sliding scale.
For more information on the ADT, please visit www.asiandevelopmenttour.com