Phuket, May 28: Thai talent Chanachok Dejpiratanamongkol closed with a three-under-par 67 to complete a wire-to-wire victory at the inaugural Singha Phuket Open.
The 23-year-old Thai held a four-shot advantage heading into the final round at Laguna Golf Phuket and – despite two bogeys in his closing three holes – hung on to win by one shot with a 27-under-par 253 total, claiming his first Asian Development Tour (ADT) title.
Newly-crowned Thailand Open champion Rattanon Wannasrichan closed with a 64 to take second place on his own, while Sutijet Kooratanapisan made it a Thai podium sweep by producing a magnificent 59 to grab third place on 256. Sutijet’s 59 was highlighted by one eagle and nine birdies and would have been a new record on the ADT if not for the preferred lies ruling in place.
Chanachok, who secured his Asian Tour card at the Qualifying School in January and landed his first professional win on the local circuit in March, continued to make it a season to remember.
“I got really nervous towards the end, especially after dropping two shots. I didn’t drive the ball well today. I kind of lost my game plan on the last few holes but luckily, I was still able to par the last to secure my title.
“This win means a lot to me. It will give me a lot of confidence heading into the rest of the season. I am also happy because this win will boost my world ranking,” said Chanachok, who shot superb rounds of 62, 61 and 63 before heading into the final 18 holes.
Chanachok takes home the winner’s prize purse of US$8,697 and receives six Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) points, courtesy of his victory. The top six players and ties will also receive OWGR points based on a sliding scale.
Sutijet, who headed into the final round with a 11-shot deficit, sank a 15-footer for birdie on the last to set a new personal best 18-hole score for himself. He had fired a scintillating 12-under-par 60 to claim his first ADT title in Malaysia last April.
“I wasn’t even thinking about winning the tournament out there. After turning in with a front-nine 30, my aim was to try and shoot a 59 to beat my own record. I wasn’t thinking much towards the end too. My iron-play was solid and I was just riding on that confidence.
“I had a chip-in birdie from 15 yards on the 15 and that got my momentum going and somehow sparked the four birdies in a row coming in. I am really pleased with my round. I was just aiming to shoot four or five-under at the start of the day,” Sutijet said.
253 – Chanachok DEJPIRATANAMONGKOL (THA) 62 63 61 67
254 – Rattanon WANNASRICHAN (THA) 67 63 60 64
256 – Sutijet KOORATANAPISAN (THA) 69 65 63 59
259 – Martin DIVE (AUS) 62 69 64 64, Gunn CHAROENKUL (THA) 68 65 62 64
262 – Udorn DUANGDECHA (THA) 65 67 64 66
263 – Atthaphon SRIBOONKAEW (THA) 66 63 68 66, Suradit YONGCHAROENCHAI (THA) 69 67 64 63
264 – Rory HIE (INA) 68 64 65 67, Chirat JIRASUWAN (THA) 67 63 65 69