Hu Aims to Chart New Course

Thu 24 Jan 2013

Hu Aims to Chart New Course

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Hua Hin, Thailand, January 24: China’s Hu Mu believes golf in China will reach greater heights if more golfers join the professional ranks like him.
Leading by example, the 23-year-old Chinese fired a second round four-under-par 68 at the Imperial Lakeview Golf Club to safely make it into the final two rounds of the Asian Tour Qualifying School Final Stage presented by Sports Authority of Thailand on Thursday.
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With his two-day total of nine-under-par 134, Hu is among the 112 players who will continue to do battle at the Asian Tour Qualifying School where only the top-40 and ties will earn their full playing status for the 2013 season.
“We have a huge golf population in China and more junior golfers coming up but not many of them are playing professionally. I think you’ve to have enough professional golfers in order to promote the game. We can certainly do better in those aspects,” said Hu, who had a promising amateur career when he won the under 18-year-old division at the China Junior Golf Open in 2001.
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Hu is hoping for more playing opportunities on the Asian Tour and remains upbeat about his chances now that he has edged closer to securing his Tour card.
“My plans for the year would be to play in as many tournaments as I can. I should just keep working hard and doing the same routine like now,” said Hu.
“I’m not particularly happy with my scores today but I guess I played okay. I felt I left a lot of shots out there so there’s still room for improvement,” added Hu, who marked his card with six birdies against two bogeys to end the day in equal fourth.
Hu is one of the two Chinese players, hoping to secure their Tour cards this week. China’s other representative, Ye Jian-feng missed the cut after rounds of 70 and 79.
The cut was set at even-par after 36 holes.
Philippines’ Miguel Tabuena is returning to Qualifying School again as he wants another shot at glory on the Asian Tour again.
After losing his card when he finished in 82nd place on the Order of Merit last season, the 18-year-old is determined to regain his place so that he can play against the best players on the Asian Tour.
“The reason why I want to come back and play on the Asian Tour is because it opens up so many doors for me. You get to play the co-sanctioned events and play against so many good players on the Tour as well,” said Tabuena.
Despite nursing a bout of flu, the teenager still managed to sign for a 72 to secure tied-30th place on 139 total.
“I wasn’t feeling well today but I think you play better when you’re not thinking so much about your game. I didn’t give myself too many birdie chances but I’m happy with the way I played today,” said the Filipino.
Tabuena’s best moment in 2012 came on home soil at the ICTSI Philippine Open where he went into the final round, one shot back of Singaporean veteran Mardan Mamat. However, he had a round to forget when he closed with a 81.
As the new season beckons, Tabuena is hoping to start afresh and reignite his title ambitions.
“My aims for this year would be to get through Qualifying School, get a good ranking and win at least a tournament on the Asian Tour,” said Tabeuna.
Meanwhile Ajeetesh Sandhu emerged as the leading Indian after posting rounds of 68 and 71.
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Sandhu, who claimed his maiden professional title on the domestic circuit in India two months ago, is now hoping to find more playing opportunities beyond the comforts of home.
“I took up golf when I was about four years old and it has been my life ever since. Hopefully I can play good enough to get my card this week and play on the Asian Tour,” said Sandhu.
“There are many great golf courses on the Asian Tour and it’s a good place to start my career,” added the Indian.
Players who play in the Qualifying School are also eligible to play in the Asian Development Tour (ADT) which will be afforded with Official World Golf Ranking points starting this season.
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), 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.