Arnond hopes to bring 'A' game to Queen's Cup

Fri 30 May 2014

Arnond hopes to bring 'A' game to Queen's Cup

  • SHARE
Samui, Thailand, May 30: In-form Arnond Vongvanij believes that patience will be the key to victory when he returns to the Queen’s Cup at the ultra-demanding Santiburi Samui Country Club next week.
The Thai ace hopes to contend for the prestigious title from June 5-8 after finishing runner-up in the popular Asian Tour event last season behind compatriot Prayad Marksaeng.
The slightly-built 25-year-old is amongst six players from the current top-10 of the Asian Tour’s Order of Merit who have committed to the US$300,000 tournament, which is celebrating its sixth edition.
Current number one Anirban Lahiri of India, compatriot Rashid Khan, Canadian Richard T. Lee, Korea’s Baek Seuk-hyun and Filipino Antonio Lascuna will be amongst the leading contenders at the Queen’s Cup which is staged in honour of Her Majesty, Queen Sirikit.
Lahiri’s EurAsia Cup teammates - Siddikur Rahman of Bangladesh, Malaysia’s Nicholas Fung and vice captain Boonchu Ruangkit - will also lend their star credentials at Santiburi Samui, which is located on the holiday isle of Samui.
Arnond has found his stride in the 2014 season, making five straight cuts and finishing tied second at the ICTSI Philippine Open earlier this month to move up to 10th place on the latest Merit list.
His solid run of form has given him the impetus to shoot for glory as he seeks a second Asian Tour victory following his maiden success at the 2012 King’s Cup on home soil.
“I played really well at the Queen’s Cup last year and I almost won it. I’m looking forward to going back there. The golf course doesn’t suit anybody’s game. It is all about being patient, putting the ball at the right spots, being aggressive when you can and defensive for most of the time,” said Arnond.
“It is a really tough golf course. Anything can go wrong on any hole. You just have to stay patient and that’s the key to success. Anytime you win the King or Queen’s trophy, it is very special for Thai players. Every Thai player will try to win the Queen’s Cup next week.”
Since bursting onto the Asian Tour scene in 2012, Arnond has made quite an impression on the region’s premier Tour, finishing 18th on the rankings in his rookie season and 24th last year.
His Thai nickname is “Bank” which was given to him as he was born the night after his mother took her final exams for a Masters’ degree in financial banking. Arnond also graduated from the University of Florida with a finance degree, and in three years on the Asian Tour, he has earned over US$425,000 in prize winnings.
For him, the chase for silverware remains as his top priority.
“It will be sweet to do something like what Prayad did (win the Queen’s Cup and King’s Cup). My goal is to stay patient and use my game plan from last year which I hope will continue to bring me success. My game has been steady this season. I’ve been playing well so far but I haven’t pieced four rounds together. Hopefully I can get better,” said Arnond.
Lahiri, who contributed two points in Asia’s dramatic draw with Europe in the inaugural EurAsia Cup in Malaysia, will be looking to challenge for a second victory of the year at the Queen’s Cup, which is sponsored by Bangkok Airways and Sports Authority of Thailand.
In five previous visits to Santiburi Samui, the tenacious 26-year-old has produced four top-10s.
“That is one of my favourite courses,” enthused Lahiri, who won the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters with a heroic eagle on the 72nd hole last month and has three other top-10s this year.
“I like the place and enjoy the golf course. It is a tough course. There are a lot of holes where you have to know how to play. Now that I’ve played there four or five times, I’ve gotten more comfortable. It suits me because it is a ball striking golf course. If you hit it good then it will reward you,” he added.
Past champions of the Queen’s Cup are Chinnarat Phadungsil of Thailand (2009), Japan’s Tetsuji Hiratsuka of Japan (2010), Thailand’s Chawalit Plaphol (2011), Thaworn Wiratchant of Thailand (2012) and Prayad Marksaeng of Thailand (2013).
Chinnarat, Chawalit and Thaworn will also be in the elite field next week to chase for a second Queen’s Cup title.
About the 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 Abacus (Official Apparel Partner), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Sponsor), Oakley (Official Eyewear and Footwear Sponsor), Saxo Capital Markets (Official Statistics Partner), Singha Beer (Official Beer), Srixon (Official Ball) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). The Asian Tour has offices in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. Also, visit us at www.asiantour.com, www.facebook.com/asiantourgolf, www.twitter.com/asiantourgolf, www.youtube.com/theasiantour and www.weibo.com/asiantourgolf.