Some of the best amateurs from the region will showcase their skills in the 28th edition of the MPI Saujana Amateur Championship, starting tomorrow at Saujana Golf & Country Club. More than 100 players from 12 countries will compete in the prestigious World Amateur Golf Ranking event, which will be played over three rounds at Saujana’s Bunga Raya Course.
One of the hot favourites for the title will be Singapore’s Marc Ong, following his impressive five-shot victory in the Malaysian Amateur Open at Kelab Golf Sarawak on Sunday.
“My game feels really good right now and I hope I can carry the momentum into Saujana,” said the 19-year-old. “To be able to win back-to-back titles would be awesome.”
One of Ong’s main rivals will be Australia’s Harrison Endycott, who is out for revenge after finishing second to Ong in Sarawak.
“We are going to meet again at Saujana and I hope I can play better,” said Endycott.
The Malaysian challenge will be shouldered by national team members Galven Kendall Green, Daeng Abdul Rahman and Amir Nazrin Jailani, who will also be carrying the nation’s challenge in the Singapore SEA Games in two weeks’ time. Green will be motivated to do well as the last Malaysian to win the event is his elder brother Gavin, the only three-time winner of the event (2009, 2011 and 2012).
Low Khai Jei, a former national player and three-time Saujana club champion, will be keen to put up a good show on home turf. He finished as best Malaysian in the Malaysian Amateur Open.
This year’s event will feature an international team competition for the first time, based on the first two days’ score. Each country is allowed a maximum of three teams.
The MPI Saujana Amateur Championship was inaugurated by Saujana in 1988, just two years after the club opened. Over the years, the tournament has attracted some of the best players in the region and many past winners have gone on to forge successful professional careers – these include Australia’s Robert Allenby (1990), Taiwan’s Chang Tse-Peng (1993), Malaysia’s R. Nachimuthu (1996, 1997) and Airil Rizman (1999), Filipino Jay Bayron (2007), Sri Lankan Mithun Perera (2010) and Thailand’s Danthai Boonma (2014)
“The MPI Saujana Amateur Championship is one of the highlights of the Asian amateur circuit and we are proud to be the title sponsor since 2012,” said David Tan, the chief strategy officer of title sponsor Multi-Purpose Insurans.
“Over the years we have seen some of the region’s top amateurs taking part, hoping to do well so they can climb up the World Amateur Golf Ranking. This year’s event will once again live up to its well-established reputation for showcasing top-class golf from players who no doubt will go on shine on the world’s professional tours.”