JOSIAH Edwards may be sitting on top of the leaderboard but the young Australian may have to work extra hard when the second round of the Saujana-100PLUS Junior Golf Championship commences tomorrow.

The 16-year-old Josiah from Perth, making his maiden appearance in Malaysia, signed off with a one-under-par 71 in Tuesday’s opening round.

However, the show may have just started for Josiah and the 52 other boys competing at the tricky Bunga Raya course where the Australian college student is expected to face a strong challenge by the pack of ‘cubs’ struggling at the back of the field but hoping to make the qualifying mark for Thursday’s final round.

Starting the second round three strokes behind Josiah and in joint-second place on 74 will be Nor Haqeim Nor Hadi and Nathan Wong Tsen Jac, while lurking dangerously one stroke further tied on 75 are the trio of Wan Hasnul Daniel, Japanese Haichi Hayashi and Wan Muhammad Danial Hafiz – all of whom will need a magical touch to stop Josiah.

“I am not too disappointed to shoot two-over 74. It was an extremely tough day and what matters most is I am not far away from the leader,” said Nor Haqeim, a member of the national junior squad. “Tomorrow is a different day and I will do my best to stay within the hunt.”

National junior player Wang Xin Yao leads the girl’s category field with five strokes and is unlikely to lose ground on Wednesday. The 15-year-old has it all planned as she aims to throttle into top gear.

Her closest rivals are Malaysian-born Australian Amanda Gan and Vanessa Chong Yi Wen who are tied five strokes behind on 76.

“It wasn’t a good day for me in the opening round. It is my first time playing on this course,” said Amanda, 17, who studies at Corpus Christi College in Perth.

“I hope my game improves in the second round and gets much better in every swing.”


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