ADT: Kokocinski takes charge at Harvard

Wed 26 Feb 2014

ADT: Kokocinski takes charge at Harvard

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Alor Setar, Malaysia, February 26: Malcolm Kokocinski of Sweden fired an opening six-under-par 66 to lead the PGM Sime Darby Harvard Championship on Wednesday.
Kokocinski returned a bogey-free card highlighted by six birdies to lead the season-opening Asian Development Tour (ADT) event by one shot from local hope Zurie Harun, Australian Darren Tan and Yuki Usami of Japan, who settled for a share of second place after signing for matching 67s at the Harvard Golf and Country Club.
A host of six players, including local young gun Mohd Iylia Jamil and Australian duo Jordan Sherratt and Sam Burrell, are a further shot back in tied fifth place at the RM200,000 (approximately US$60,000) event.
Malaysia’s Danny Chia, who is making a comeback on the ADT after undergoing a neck surgery last September, signed for a 70 to take a share of 20th place with compatriot Arie Fauzi and four other players.
Kokocinski showed he had overcome the disappointment of missing out on an Asian Tour card at Qualifying School last month with his flying start. He enjoyed a relatively good season on the ADT in 2013 where he claimed a total of five top-10 results.
The young Swede is determined to play his way onto the main Tour by excelling on the ADT, which is rewarding the top-five finishers on the Order of Merit with Asian Tour cards for 2015.
“I played solid today. I didn’t make any bogeys and I’m very happy with how I played. It’s a pity I didn’t manage to secure my Asian Tour card at the Qualifying School but I’ve moved on from there. I’ll continue to work hard and better my game. Hopefully I can finish well this week,” said the 22-year-old.
Zurie overcame the hot and dry conditions at the Harvard course to remain on course for a maiden win on the ADT.
“I’m pretty familiar with this course and I’ve played well here before. It was really hot out there but I was considered lucky as I got an early tee time. You really need to stay focused and hydrated playing under such conditions,” said the 38-year-old, who traded eight birdies against three bogeys.
“I’ve made some changes to my swing recently. The focus is now more on my back swing. I’m glad it is showing some improvements now. Hopefully I can maintain my good form in the next few rounds,” added Zurie.
The winner of this week’s PGM Sime Darby Harvard Championship will take home a prize purse of US$10,500 and receive six Official World Golf Ranking points. The top six players and ties will also earn points based on a sliding scale.
The ADT will continue to offer world ranking points for the second consecutive year. They will be used to determine the field when golf makes a return to the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.
The ADT, which was launched in 2010 with five tournaments before growing to eight in 2011, 13 in 2012 and a record 16 in the 2013 season, has proved to be a successful platform for upcoming players to gain entry into the region’s premier Tour.
For more information on the ADT, please visit www.asiandevelopmenttour.com .
Leading first round scores:
66 – Malcolm KOKOCINSKI (SWE)
67 – Zurie HARUN (MAS), Darren TAN (AUS), Yuki USAMI (JPN)
68 – Mohd Iylia JAMIL (MAS), Jordan SHERRATT (AUS), TSENG Hong-sheng (TPE), Sam BURRELL (AUS), Clarke LUTTON (SCO), Hunter HAWKINS (USA)
69 – Shaaban HUSSIN (MAS), S. Siva Chandhran (MAS), Nicholas PUA (MAS), Wisut Artjanawat (THA), CHAN Shih-chang (TPE), R. Nachimuthu (MAS), Grant Jackson (ENG), LEE Yi-cheng (TPE), Nils FLOREN (SWE)
Ends.
About the Asian Development Tour
The Asian Development Tour was launched in 2010 with the aim of creating a career pathway for professional golfers in Asia. Sanctioned by the Asian Tour, the Asian Development Tour will ultimately create a new playing platform for emerging stars from across Asia and around the world. Through the Asian Tour Qualifying School, players will qualify for the Asian Development Tour and enjoy the opportunity to hone their games and talent through a secondary circuit in Asia. Designed in the same structure as the Web.com Tour in America and European Challenge Tour, the Asian Development Tour is a stepping stone to the Asian Tour and the exciting world of international golf. The Asian Development Tour has been structured to ensure the best opportunities for its members. The leading three players on the Asian Development Tour will earn coveted Asian Tour cards for the following season, ensuring a proper career pathway for aspiring professionals. All ADT events receive Official World Golf Ranking points.