Green breaks through in Taiwan

Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

Taiwan, October 1: Malaysia’s Gavin Green captured his first Asian Tour title with a two-shot victory in the US$800,000 Mercuries Taiwan Masters.

Green, 23, battled to a closing 71 at Taiwan Golf & Country Club to finish on nine-under-par 279, two clear of overnight leader Juvic Pagunsan of the Philippines, Brazil’s Adilson Da Silva, Zimbabwean Scott Vincent and South African Keith Horne. Tied at one stage with Horne and Vincent, Green birdied 16 and pulled away as his rivals faded.

Green dedicated the win to his late grandfather, Gerald, who passed away last week from a heart-attack.

“It is a bit overwhelming to be honest with you. My grandfather played a huge part in my life and he wanted to see me win. I told everybody earlier this week that it would be huge if I won this week for him,” said the big-hitting Malaysian, who finished second in Korea last week.

“He really wanted to see me win and I really tried to win it for him in Korea. But I didn’t and he passed away. It was tough because he was in Malaysia. I think his death pushed me to try harder and win. He was definitely with me today,” he added.

The US$160,000 winner’s cheque catapulted Green to the top of the Asian Tour Order of Merit with US$527,346, making him the first Malaysian to hold the No 1 spot. He is the fifth Malaysian to win on the Asian Tour following Danny Chia, Airil Rizman, Ben Leong and Nicholas Fung.

Malaysia had a good outing in the event, with the resurgent Leong chalking up a joint seventh finish on three-under-par, Fung in T16 place on one-over-par and Chia in 22nd on +3.

Results (Top 10 and ties):

279 (-9)  – Gavin GREEN (MAS) 67-70-71-71
281 (-7) – Adilson Da SILVA (BRA) 71-68-73-69, Scott VINCENT (ZIM)69-76-66-70, Keith HORNE (RSA) 70-68-72-71, Juvic PAGUNSAN (PHI) 68-69-70-74
283 (-5) – Danthai BOONMA (THA) 68-72-71-72
285 (-3) – Suradit YONGCHAROENCHAI (THA) 68-72-75-70, Gaganjeet BHULLAR (IND) 73-73-69-70, Arjun ATWAL (IND) 73-71-70-71, Ben LEONG (MAS) 71-69-71-74

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