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Lin wins second Asia-Pacific Amateur title in playoff against Kanaya

Photo by AAC Golf

China’s Lin Yuxin became only the second repeat winner of the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship, winning an exciting playoff against 2018 champion Takumi Kanaya of Japan at Sheshan International Golf Club in Shanghai, China, yesterday.

Lin, who won the 2017 edition at Royal Wellington in New Zealand, earned starts in the 2020 Masters at Augusta National and 2020 Open Championship at Royal St George’s. The left-handed golfer from Beijing birdied the 18th hole twice in the playoff to defeat Kanaya, the world’ s top-ranked amateur. The only other player to win twice was Japanese star Hideki Matsuyana, who claimed back-to-back titles in 2010 and 2011.

“It definitely means a lot to me, especially this week … winning at home is certainly huge for me and for China golf as well,” said Lin,  who finished on 10-under-par 278 (68-71-71-68).

”Just being able to get back to Augusta and The Open is a great feeling. I can’t wait to get back to those two amazing championships,” added the University of Southern California freshman, who had trouble with the par-five 18th most of the week including a double bogey in the third round a a three-putt bogey on the last regulation hole.

Lin birdied the first playoff hole from 10 feet to stay alive after Kanaya had nailed a 25-foot bomb. The Chinese player then hit a stunning bunker shot at the second extra hole to leave himself a tap-in birdie for the win, after Kanaya had missed his own attempt.

Malaysian No 1 Ervin Chang finished T28 on three-over-par 291 (68-71-78-74), 10 shots head of compatriot Malcolm Ting (73-76-75-77). The two other Malaysians in the field, Rhaasrikanesh Kanavathi and Adam Ariff Madzri, missed the halfway cut.

The Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship was created in 2009 by the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation (APGC), the Masters Tournament and The R&A. This year’s event returned for the third time to mainland China, which hosted the inaugural tournament in 2009 at Mission Hills in Shenzhen, followed by the 2013 edition at Nanshan International in Longkou City, Shandong. Next year’s championship will return to Australia’s Royal Melbourne Golf Club, which also hosted the 2014 edition won by local player Antonio Murdaca.

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