Brazel and Lam share the Solaire spotlight

Thu 13 Mar 2014

Brazel and Lam share the Solaire spotlight

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Manila, March 13: Sam Brazel of Australia reeled in a five-under-par 66 to share the opening round lead with local talent James Ryan Lam at the US$300,000 Solaire Open on Thursday.
Brazel, who is equally skilful in fishing, snared six birdies and one bogey while Lam posted a flawless round to spearhead the Filipino challenge at the demanding The Country Club, which is hosting its first Asian Tour event.
Miguel Tabuena of the Philippines and Rikard Karlberg of Sweden, a two-time Asian Tour winner, trailed by one shot in tied third as they took advantage of the relatively calm morning conditions.
Brazel, 35, felt right at home in his debut appearance at The Country Club as he negotiated his way around the tricky greens in 25 putts.
The Australian displayed his putting prowess in the Asian Tour event but revealed that he is also an expert fisherman, which would have been his full time job if he did not turn professional.
“Yes, I would be a fisherman if I wasn’t a golfer!” Brazel laughed. “This is my first time here and I enjoy the layout. The wind is a bit tricky but I holed some nice putts which makes it a little bit easier!”
Rikard Karlberg of Sweden Rikard Karlberg of Sweden
He is determined to shine in his second stint on the Asian Tour after going through the rudiments in his rookie season in 2013 where he finished 66th on the Order of Merit.
“Last year was obviously a new experience for me. I want to play consistently again and try to finish inside the top-60 on the Order of Merit which will be a big bonus if I do,” added Brazel.
Lam, who turned professional in 2010, was rewarded with a bogey-free round when he took the safe approach by keeping his driver in the bag on selected holes.
“I’ve been struggling a lot with my driver and I was talking to my friends who said that it doesn’t matter how you get the ball into the hole. As long as you can keep it in play then it is good enough. I used my three-wood on most of the holes and only pulled out driver on the holes that are really wide,” smiled the 26-year-old Lam.
The tall Filipino missed the halfway cut at the Qualifying School Final Stage in February but maintained his positive approach after working with his mental coach (Sai of Thailand).
“It was disappointing (to miss the grade at Qualifying School) but I had to look at the positive side of things. I’ve been looking at so many negative things throughout the years and my mental coach has kept me on track to stay positive,” said Lam.
Sweden’s Karlberg, a two-time Asian Tour winner, was unmoved by the blustery conditions as he maintained his hot streak after finishing third at the SAIL-SBI Open in India two weeks ago.
“I played good at the King’s Cup Golf Hua Hin (in January) and it was windy there. I was in Abu Dhabi after that and the wind was quite strong as well so I guess I had good practice before coming here!” said Karlberg.
Lin Wen Tang of Chinese Taipei Lin Wen Tang of Chinese Taipei
Defending champion Lin Wen-tang fired a 70 for tied 18th after being punished with a double bogey when his wayward second shot on hole 18 landed in the water.
“It was quite a good day. I only got into trouble once but overall my game and body feel good. The greens here are fast and tricky. It is scary! Hopefully I can keep the momentum going. I played early in the morning so it wasn’t so windy. The second round will be a big challenge for me,” said the six-time Asian Tour winner.
Scores after round 1 of the Solaire Open being played at the par 71, 7206 Yards The Country Club course (a- denotes amateur):
66 - Sam BRAZEL (AUS), James Ryan LAM (PHI).
67 - Miguel TABUENA (PHI), Rikard KARLBERG (SWE).
68 - Zanie Boy GIALON (PHI), Jessie BALASABAS (PHI), Richard T. LEE (CAN), Prayad MARKSAENG (THA), Chawalit PLAPHOL (THA), Matthew GRIFFIN (AUS), Nicholas CULLEN (AUS), S.S.P CHOWRASIA (IND).
69 - Bryce EASTON (RSA), Prom MEESAWAT (THA), Carlos PIGEM (ESP), Akinori TANI (JPN), Carl SANTOS-OCAMPO (PHI).
70 - Wasin SRIPATTRANUSORN (THA), Andrew DODT (AUS), Terry PILKADARIS (AUS), Jazz JANEWATTANANOND (THA), Naoto NAKANISHI (JPN), LIN Wen-tang (TPE), Rahil GANGJEE (IND), Antonio LASCUNA (PHI), Charles HONG (PHI), Berry HENSON (USA), Seb GROS (FRA), LU Wen-teh (TPE), Sattaya SUPUPRAMAI (THA), Siddikur RAHMAN (BAN), Simon GRIFFITHS (ENG), Angelo QUE (PHI), Thammanoon SRIROJ (THA), Daisuke KATAOKA (JPN), Ryan MCCARTHY (AUS), Dimitrios PAPADATOS (AUS).
Ends.
About Solaire Resorts and Casino
Bloomberry Resorts Corporation (PSE: BLOOM) is a public company listed on the Philippine Stock Exchange, develops destination resorts featuring premium accommodations, world-class restaurants, gaming and entertainment, and extensive  luxurious facilities.
Solaire Resort & Casino, the primary property of Bloomberry Resorts Corporation, is a USD $1.2 Billion integrated destination resort on a 8.3-hectare site in Manila, Philippines opened March 2013. Solaire, a luxury destination casino resort, is the first property to open in the Entertainment City, a government sponsored (Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation) economic development zone.
Solaire’s Phase 1 features 500 luxurious rooms, suites and bay side villas, 18,500 square meters of gaming space, a wide range of award-winning dining experience and signature restaurants, sophisticated bars and lounges, and an ample multi-level car park. For more information and reservations, please contact a travel professional or access the website: solaireresort.com
SOURCE: Bloomberry Resorts Corporation
(www.bloomberry.ph)
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), Subway (Official Quick Service Restaurant) 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.
About the Philippine Golf Tour
Pilipinas Golf Tournaments Inc. (PGTI) was established in 2009 to advance the cause of professional golf in the Philippines. PGTI supports the Filipino golfer through exposures in local, regional and international golf tournaments. Through its flagship tournament circuit, the Philippine Golf Tour (PGT), PGTI organizes tournaments held in the country’s top golf courses wherein golfers could hone their skills, compete with fellow professionals, and earn from the sport. In just over a year, the PGT has become the largest local golf circuit in Southeast Asia.