Asian Tour stars enjoy World Ranking boost

Sun 21 Dec 2014

Asian Tour stars enjoy World Ranking boost

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Singapore, December 22: A total of 17 Asian Tour members finished the year inside top-200 on the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) with Thai veteran Thongchai Jaidee being the highest-ranked in 37th position.
Thongchai, a three-time Asian Tour Order of Merit winner, ensured that he finished the year inside the world’s top-40 after securing a tied-sixth result at the star-studded Thailand Golf Championship a fortnight ago.
The Thai, who was ranked 46th at the end of 2013, improved his rankings on the OWGR after winning the prestigious Nordea Masters earlier in June, marking his second victory on European soil in his illustrious career. He also chalked up nine top-10s around the globe.
Indian hotshot Anirban Lahiri, who finished second on the Asian Tour Order of Merit this season, settled for 64th position, one rung behind Asian Tour honorary member, Ernie Els of South Africa.
Ranked 111th at the end of 2013, Lahiri made big strides on the OWGR thanks to a splendid 2014 season which includes two victories and eight top-10s on the Asian Tour.
The 27-year-old earned a spot in the game’s oldest Major in 2015 following a tied-sixth finish at the recent Thailand Golf Championship, which was part of the Open Qualifying Series. It will be his first time playing the Old course at St Andrews and his third appearance at The Open.
Australian Scott Hend, who finished fifth at the Thailand Golf Championship, also grabbed one of the four tickets to Scotland which eventually saw him break into the world’s top 100 with a career high 96th position. Hend had won the prestigious Hong Kong Open earlier in October, securing his European Tour card for 2015.
2010 Order of Merit champion, Noh Seung-yul of Korea and compatriot K.J. Choi, another honorary member of the Asian Tour, are ranked 105th and 116th in the world respectively.
Thailand’s Prom Meesawat, who finished third on the Order of Merit this season, rose to a career high 129th position courtesy of a fruitful season which includes a long-awaited second victory in Chinese Taipei in September and five other top-10 finishes.
Newly-crowned 2014 Order of Merit champion David Lipsky of the United States, who inked his name in the record books by becoming the first Asian Tour player to win the Omega European Masters in September, jumped 386 rungs to finish the year in 133rd position.
Reigning Order of Merit champion Kiradech Aphibarnrat of Thailand is ranked 134th in the world followed by compatriot Prayad Marksaeng in 136th and Australian Wade Ormsby in 148th position.
Filipino veteran Antonio Lascuna (157th), Thai star Thaworn Wiratchant (159th), Chinese ace Liang Wen-chong (174th), South African Jbe Kruger (188th), Australian Cameron Smith (190th), Thailand’s Chapchai Nirat (197th) and India’s Rashid Khan (200th) are amongst the other Asian Tour players within the world’s top 200 at the end of the 2014 season.
Smith, who finished fifth on the Order of Merit, is the best performing rookie on the Asian Tour this season. Starting the year in 899th position, the 21-year-old Australian moved up 709 spots in a span of 12 months on the OWGR following seven top-10s in nine starts on the region’s premier Tour.
Another notable name who made a giant leap on the OWGR is Thailand’s Pavit Tangkamolprasert, the 2014 Asian Development Tour Order of Merit champion. Pavit rose from 865th to 214th after notching 36.97 world ranking points this season courtesy of his superb performances on the ADT where he recorded three victories and five top-five finishes.
The OWGR points are crucial for golfers to qualify for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro as the elite 60-man field will be decided based on the world rankings.
Ends.
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), PRG (Official Accessories Supplier), Saxo Capital Markets (Official Statistics Partner), Srixon (Official Ball), Titleist (Official Web Partner) 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.