The 32-year-old has yet to claim a top-10 result in 2015 after struggling to adapt to a new swing change. After enjoying a glimpse of some good form in Thailand last week, Rizal is determined to turn the corner at the RM200,000 (approximately US$50,000) Asian Development Tour (ADT) event.
Rizal, who won his first ADT title last year, will be joined by countryman Arie Irawan, Casey O’Toole of the United States, Sean Riordan of New Zealand and Masaru Takahashi of Japan at the Bukit Jawi Golf Resort.
After losing 25 kilograms thanks to a new healthy lifestyle, a slimmer Rizal plans to return to winning ways at the PGM Bukit Jawi Championship.
“The last nine months have been a bit of a struggle. I haven’t been consistent because of my swing changes and losing weight. I’m doing a lot of adjustments but I started seeing my game turning around at the Thongchai Jaidee Foundation,” said Rizal.
“After losing weight, I have more mobility and flexibility. The swing is different because I can turn more. My stamina is also better. I was very sluggish previously and waking up in the morning was tough. Now I’m not too tired and I wake up easily. I had to cut down on rice and cut drinking soda completely.
The burly Malaysian, who finished tied 45th in Thailand last week, said his game is on the right track. He also believes that he will reap the benefits of working with his coach and former LPGA professional Lim Siew Ai.
“I had a great year last year but it has been a tough ride because of the changes this year. I’ve been trying to stay patient and positive. I need to get my confidence level up and to do that, I need to trust what I’ve been doing with my coach,” Rizal explained.
The ADT will continue to reward the top-five finishers on the Order of Merit at the end of this season with Asian Tour cards for 2016.
With the Olympic Games looming in 2016 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