Kang romps to five-shot win in Korea

Sun 13 Oct 2013

Kang romps to five-shot win in Korea

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Yeoju, Gyeonggi-do, Korea, October 13: Kang Sung-hoon of Korea fired a two-under-par 70 to cruise to a five-shot victory for his second career title since 2010 at the US$750,000 CJ Invitational Hosted by KJ Choi on Sunday.
The 26-year-old Kang defeated countryman Kim Tae-hoon (72) and India’s Jyoti Randhawa, who registered a 67 for his best score of the week, with a winning total of 12-under-par 276 at the Haesley Nine Bridges Golf Club on the outskirts of Seoul.
Current Asian Tour number one Kiradech Aphibarnrat of Thailand, who was three shots off the lead at the start of the final round, carded a 73 to share fourth place with Jason Knutzon (69) of the United States and Baek Seuk-hyun (69) of Korea.
Kang’s lead never looked threatened after he shot four straight birdies starting from the third hole. He bogeyed holes eight and 16 but was still comfortably in charge.
He is the only other player apart from K.J. Choi to win the CJ Invitational which has been staged on the Asian Tour Schedule since 2011. Choi, who won the event in 2011 and 2012, shot a 73 to finish in tied 21st position.
“It feels like I’m dreaming. I can’t believe that I won. Maybe I’ll wake up tomorrow and the winning feeling will sink in,” smiled the 26-year-old Kang, who won US$135,000.
Jyoti Randhawa of India Jyoti Randhawa of India
“To be honest I felt very comfortable after nine holes. I was looking at the scores and I saw that I had a big lead so I was able to play it safe and try to give myself chances. It has been quite a while since I last won so this is a great feeling,” said Kang.
The slightly built Korean has been playing in the United States in the last three years, including a year on the PGA Tour in 2011 where he forged a friendship with his childhood hero Choi.
“When I played on the PGA Tour, I lived very near to K.J. We had dinners together and he would give me a lot of advice. That’s why it means a lot to me that I have won this event which he is hosting,” Kang explained.
Randhawa, the 2002 Asian Tour Order of Merit winner, earned his best result since his last victory on the region’s premier Tour in 2009 after hitting six birdies against one bogey.
“Start with a bang and end with a bang but I have no idea what happened in between! I had a good ball striking day. I felt my best out there and I’ll take the positives out of this round until the end of the year,” said Randhawa, an eight-time Asian Tour winner.
Kiradech struggled with a knee injury midway through the round and was disappointed that he did not take advantage of his solid ball striking and impressive short game.
“I got off to a good start but I felt pain in my left knee during the closing stages. I couldn’t squat to read the putting lines. That’s why I struggled a lot in the last four or five holes. I even felt a bit of pain when I was swinging and that’s why I hooked two of my shots,” said the 24-year-old Kiradech.
“Anyway, it is a good result but it should have been much better than this because of the way I’ve been striking the ball this week,” he lamented.
Choi, who has successful hosted the CJ Invitational for three seasons on the Asian Tour, tipped his hat to the latest champion, Kang.
“I’m very pleased with the way the young players are playing. If more young players pl
Kiradech Aphibarnrat of Thailand Kiradech Aphibarnrat of Thailand
ay well then it will boost the stature of this event as well as the golf industry in Asia. It has been a very good week and I’m proud to see a new champion win my event,” said Choi.
The CJ Invitational Hosted by KJ Choi is title sponsored by the CJ Group, Korea’s food-to-entertainment conglomerate and is promoted by IMG.
Scores after round 4 of the CJ Invitational Hosted By KJ Choi being played at the par 72, 7226 Yards Haesley Nine Bridges GC course (a- denotes amateur):
276 - KANG Sung-hoon (KOR) 68-69-69-70.
281 - Jyoti RANDHAWA (IND) 67-74-73-67, KIM Tae-hoon (KOR) 66-69-74-72.
282 - Jason KNUTZON (USA) 72-71-70-69, BAEK Seuk-hyun (KOR) 70-73-70-69, Kiradech APHIBARNRAT (THA) 66-71-72-73.
283 - KIM Gi-whan (KOR) 69-72-72-70, MAENG Dong-seop (KOR) 69-70-70-74.
284 - Panuphol PITTAYARAT (THA) 70-77-69-68, Zaw MOE (MYN) 70-74-71-69.
285 - LEE Kyoung-hoon (KOR) 69-77-71-68, Rikard KARLBERG (SWE) 69-68-71-77.
286 - Berry HENSON (USA) 69-74-75-68, PARK Ju-hyuk (KOR) 74-68-72-72, Unho PARK (AUS) 70-76-68-72, Jbe KRUGER (RSA) 71-72-70-73.
287 - KANG Wook-soon (KOR) 75-72-71-69, KIM Hyung-tae 404 (KOR) 70-76-71-70, HWANG Inn-choon (KOR) 72-73-70-72, Anirban LAHIRI (IND) 69-76-69-73.
Ends.
Baek Seuk-hyun of Korea Baek Seuk-hyun of Korea
About the K.J. Choi Foundation
K.J. Choi, one of the most successful golfers to come from Korea, did not want to stop with his own personal success, but felt a strong social responsibility to give back to society and realized he needed a reliable means of doing so. Joining together with other community leaders in Korea who share the common idea, he established the K.J. Choi Foundation in 2007 for this purpose. K.J. Choi Foundation conducts major charitable projects for those who are faced in hopeless situations in Korean domestic and International communities. The Foundation especially focuses in the support of underprivileged children by lovingly providing welfare services and professional help, thus providing young people with hopes and dreams. K.J. Choi also works closely with many community leaders to help support junior golfers in difficult financial and environmental situations fulfil their dreams through his junior golf program, K.J. Choi Dream Team. K.J. Choi Foundation’s vision is to be a community leader that provides hope and happiness for all, and its purpose is to be a Foundation for everyone.
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), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Supplier), Saxo Capital Markets (Official Statistics Partner), Singha Beer (Official Beer), Srixon (Official Ball), Subway (Official Quick Service Restaurant), 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.