Chawalit Steals Kiradech's Thunder

Sat 23 Feb 2013

Chawalit Steals Kiradech's Thunder

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Yangon, Myanmar, February 23: Thailand’s Chawalit Plaphol sensationally grabbed the third round lead with a critical birdie on the last for four-under-par 68 at the US$300,000 Zaykabar Myanmar Open presented by Alpine on Saturday.
Chawalit, a three-time Asian Tour winner, leads by one-shot over Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who slipped to second despite saving par on the last when his tee shot found water for a 71 at the Royal Mingalardon Golf and Country Club.
Filipino Angelo Que was flawless in a round of 66 as he shared third place with opening round leader Chapchai Nirat (67) of Thailand at the event which is the first tournament on the Asian Tour’s 10th season.
Rahil Gangjee of India, Arnond Vongvanij of Thailand and Darren Beck of Australia were a further shot back in fifth.
On a blustery day, Chawalit held a two-shot cushion after three straight birdies from the 12th hole but he posted a double bogey on 16 when he hit a poor second shot into the left rough.
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“Overall I played okay except for two bad holes. But I’m happy with how I played. I followed my game plan and it seems to be working. I’m lucky I had that 15 footer birdie on the last to hold the lead,” said the 2011 Queen’s Cup winner, who totalled 15-under-par 201.
Chawalit is hoping to add a fourth Asian Tour title to his career but he is not taking his slim lead for granted as 17 other players are within five shots of the lead.
“I want to win but this golf course favours the long hitters like Kiradech. He is such a good player and I have so many other talented players trailing closely behind,” said the 38-year-old.
After leading in the last two days, Kiradech, who is recovering from a thyroid disorder, is confident of making a final round charge.
“You must have one bad round in four days of golf. I controlled my round and was happy with a one-under. Today was quite windy so that’s why you don’t see many low scores,” said Kiradech, who lost in a play-off last year.
Que, a three-time Asian Tour winner but not since 2010, was delighted to be in the mix after charging up the leaderboard with six birdies.
“Every time you shoot a six-under without any bogeys is a great day and I’ve been in this situation before. I know how to handle myself and if I stay patient then I can do it,” said Que, known to be one of the most jovial players on Tour.
Scores after round 3 of the ZAYKABAR MYANMAR OPEN being played at the par 72, 7218 Yards RMGcC course (a- denotes amateur):
201 - Chawalit PLAPHOL (THA) 67-66-68.
202 - Kiradech APHIBARNRAT (THA) 64-67-71.
203 - Angelo QUE (PHI) 69-68-66, Chapchai NIRAT (THA) 64-72-67.
204 - Rahil GANGJEE (IND) 71-66-67, Arnond VONGVANIJ (THA) 68-67-69, Darren BECK (AUS) 66-69-69.
205 - Thammanoon SRIROJ (THA) 69-70-66, Mardan MAMAT (SIN) 67-69-69, HUNG Chien-yao (TPE) 67-67-71, Marcus BOTH (AUS) 68-66-71, Joonas GRANBERG (FIN) 65-69-71.
206 - Young NAM (KOR) 66-73-67, Mithun PERERA (SRI) 71-68-67, Danny CHIA (MAS) 68-70-68, Berry HENSON (USA) 70-68-68, HWANG In-choon (KOR) 66-70-70, Lionel WEBER (FRA) 67-69-70.
207 - Quincy QUEK (SIN) 71-69-67, Thaworn WIRATCHANT (THA) 71-67-69, David LUTTERUS (AUS) 70-67-70, BAEK Seuk-hyun (KOR) 67-68-72, Thanyakon KHRONGPHA (THA) 66-67-74.
208 - Daisuke KATAOKA (JPN) 74-67-67, Tim STEWART (AUS) 71-70-67, Himmat RAI (IND) 70-71-67, Dodge KEMMER (USA) 69-71-68, KIM Seng-yong (KOR) 72-66-70, Prom MEESAWAT (THA) 65-72-71, HU Mu (CHN) 67-70-71.
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About the Asian Tour
In 2013, the Asian Tour will celebrate a momentous milestone with its 10th season. 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), BlackBerry (Official Communications Partner), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Supplier), Singha Beer (Official Beer), Srixon (Official Ball), Starwood Hotels and Resorts (Official Hotels and Resorts) 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