Shah Alam, Malaysia, December 16: Phachara Khongwatmai believes that his age will be an asset rather than a liability when he represents Team Asia at the EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM from January 12 to 14, 2018.
The 18-year-old Phachara is determined to bring out his air of youthful fearlessness when he represents Asia against Team Europe in the Ryder Cup-style match play event which will be played at the Glenmarie Golf and Country Club
“I’m the youngest player in the event and honestly, I don’t feel any pressure,” said Phachara. “When Team Europe knows how old I am, they will really want to try and beat me. But if I get off to a fast start, they might start to get worried.
Phachara may be young, but the teenager clearly knows how to play good, competitive golf. When he was 14 years old, he won as an amateur to become the youngest player to win a professional tournament in the world.
He turned professional in 2014 and won twice on the Asian Development Tour (ADT) before going on to enjoy a solid Asian Tour career. Phachara is currently seventh on the Asian Tour Order of Merit, a clear indication of his sound performance on the Tour this year.
The young Thai is certainly no pushover when it comes to match play. At the ISPS HANDA World Super 6 Perth, he defeated Sam Brazel, Lucas Herbert, Matthew Millar and Jason Scrivener in the knockout stage of the tournament.
He missed out on the title after losing to home favourite Brett Rumford in the final match but his performance his testament to his true golfing ability which belies his age.
“I feel good about representing Team Asia because I’ve never played in a team match play before. Hopefully, I can play as well as I did in Australia at the EurAsia Cup,” said Phachara.
In particular, he is looking forward to working with team captain Arjun Atwal of India, whom he found inspirational.
“I believe he (Atwal) can make us all be better players. I watched him play in Mauritius and he fought so hard. I was thinking at that time, maybe I’ll give him my spot!” he said, laughingly.
Atwal has selected China’s Zhang Lianwei, one of the most decorated players of his generation, as his Vice-Captain to help him lead Team Asia.
Phachara, along with newly crowned merit champion Gavin Green, S.S.P. Chawrasia and Poom Saksansin join Team Asia as the four leading players on the Asian Tour Order of Merit.
Japan’s Yuta Ikeda of Japan, China’s Li Haotong, India’s Lahiri and Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat earned their spots in Team Asia as the leading available Asians on the world ranking.
Korea’s Byeonghun An is the captain’s pick. He will be representing Team Asia for the second time at the EurAsia Cup.
Wildcards Hideto Tanihara of Japan and Nicholas Fung of Malaysia, who will be making his third EurAsia Cup appearance, will round up the team.
The EurAsia Cup will feature 24 matches, with day one showcasing six Fourball matches, followed by six Foursomes matches and 12 Singles matches on the third day.
Ticket sales are now open. You can purchase the EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM tickets here: https://www.ticketpro.com.my/sports/2231222-Eurasia-Cup-2018.html
DRB-HICOM Berhad (“DRB-HICOM”) is one of Malaysia’s leading conglomerates with core businesses in the Automotive, Services & Education, as well as Property sectors. With more than 90 active companies in its stable and over 59,000 employees group-wide, DRB-HICOM’s aim is to continue adding value and propelling the nation’s development. In the Automotive sector, DRB-HICOM is involved in the manufacturing, assembly and distribution of passenger and commercial vehicles, including the national motorcycle. In Services & Education, DRB-HICOM is involved in various businesses, including concession and financial-related services. In Property, DRB-HICOM is involved in residential and commercial developments.
About Asian Tour
As the official sanctioning body for professional golf in Asia, the Asian Tour leads the development of golf across the region, enhancing the careers of its members while maintaining a commitment to the integrity of the game. The Asian Tour, through its membership of the International Federation of PGA Tours, is the only recognised pan-Asian professional golf tour in Asia. This unique feature positions the Asian Tour at the pinnacle of professional golf in Asia; providing its events with Official World Ranking status. Tour Partners include Rolex (Official Timekeeper), Panasonic (Official Consumer Electronics), ECCO (Official Footwear Sponsor), FENIX XCell (Official Apparel Supplier), Titleist (Official Web Partner), Bloomberg TV (Official International Media Partner), Bloomberg Businessweek Chinese (Official International Media Partner), Wall Street Journal (Official International Media Partner) and Sentosa in Singapore which is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.
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About the European Tour
The European Tour celebrates men’s professional golf on a global stage. In 2017, the European Tour International Schedule features a minimum of 47 tournaments in 26 countries, including eight Rolex Series events, all part of the Race to Dubai.
Celebrating the global connectivity of the European Tour and Dubai, the Race to Dubai is a season-long competition to crown the European Tour’s Number One player, an honour which in 2016 went to Sweden’s Henrik Stenson for the second time, and which since 2009 has also been achieved three times by Rory McIlroy, as well as by Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer and Luke Donald. Formerly known as the Order of Merit, points are accumulated based on prize money won, with the top 10 ranked players at the end of the season sharing a $5million Race to Dubai bonus pool.
Since its formation in 1972, the European Tour has witnessed 26 Members celebrate a total of 52 Major Championship titles between them, enjoyed ten Members attaining the pinnacle of World Number One and has celebrated its diversity as players from 36 different countries have won on the Tour.
The European Tour also manages the Challenge Tour, which featured 28 tournaments in 22 countries in 2016, and the Senior Tour, which featured 13 tournaments in nine countries in 2016. It is also the Managing Partner of Ryder Cup Europe, the body which, alongside the PGA of America, administers golf’s greatest team contest, The Ryder Cup.
The European Tour broadcasts live coverage of its tournaments to more than 490 million homes in more than 150 countries every week, generating in excess of 2,200 global broadcast hours for each event. It also enjoys the support of many of the world’s leading business brands with Rolex, BMW, Emirates and Titleist as Official Partners.
About MMC Corporation Berhad
MMC Corporation Berhad (MMC) is a leading utilities and infrastructure group with diversified businesses under three divisions, namely ports & logistics, energy & utilities and engineering & construction.
Its key businesses under the Ports and Logistics division include the operations of Port of Tanjung Pelepas Sdn Bhd, Johor Port Berhad, Northport (Malaysia) Bhd, Penang Port Sdn Bhd, Kontena Nasional Berhad and JP Logistics. Internationally, MMC has an associate stake in Red Sea Gateway Terminal Company Limited, a container port terminal within the Jeddah Islamic Port, Saudi Arabia.
Under the Energy & Utilities division, MMC is the single largest shareholder of both Malakoff Corporation Berhad and Gas Malaysia Berhad.
MMC’s Engineering & Construction division has further established itself in the sector with a leading role as the Project Delivery Partner (PDP) and underground works package contractor for the 51km Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit (KVMRT) project (Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line) and Line 2 project (Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya Line). Prior to this, MMC has successfully completed the 329km Ipoh-Padang Besar Electrified Double Tracking Project as well as the innovative Stormwater Management and Road Tunnel (SMART) motorway, the first-of-its-kind dual-purpose tunnel in the world.
MMC continues to make inroads in the construction industry, securing key civil and infrastructure projects in the country namely Langat Centralised Sewerage Treatment Plant, Langat 2 Water Treatment Plant, civil and infrastructure works for RAPID Pengerang Cogeneration Plant. Additionally, MMC has a 20% effective interest in Borneo Highway PDP Sdn Bhd (BHP) which has been appointed as PDP for the Sabah Pan Borneo Highway Project.
In other businesses, MMC owns Aliran Ihsan Resources Berhad, a water treatment plant operator and Senai Airport Terminal Services Sdn Bhd, the operator of Senai International Airport in Johor Bahru; a major aviation hub and the main air transportation gateway to Iskandar Malaysia. Additionally, MMC’s Group Property arm manages close to 6,000 acres of industrial developments in Iskandar Malaysia, Johor and Kulim, Kedah, namely Senai Airport City, Tanjung Bin Petrochemical & Maritime Industrial Centre (TBPMIC) and Northern Technocity in Kulim. The Senai Airport City, TBPMIC and NTC (NTC) developments come under the ambit of Group Property’s three operating companies – Senai Airport City Sdn Bhd, Seaport Worldwide Sdn Bhd and Northern Technocity Sdn Bhd respectively.