Khan finally savours success

Mon 03 Mar 2014

Khan finally savours success

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Singapore, March 3: Chasing success is never easy. Just ask Rashid Khan.
He swallowed the bitter pill on numerous occasions most notably when he missed out on a top-40 finish by two shots at the Asian Tour Qualifying School last year and was again left to rue another cruel blow after losing in a play-off at the 2013 SAIL-SBI Open presented by Incredible India.
But even when success often deserted him, Khan’s pursuit of excellence was relentless as giving up was never an option.
Faced with yet another play-off at the same event again, the talented Indian’s destiny with greatness would eventually come despite having to toy with lady luck at the Delhi Golf Club (DGC).
“I don’t like play-offs. I played some seven play-offs in the last 14 months and I won only three. I lost my last play-off at the Bilt. It’s a lottery,” said Khan, who pipped Bangladeshi Siddikur Rahman to his maiden Asian Tour win with a birdie on the first extra hole.
The golfing Gods finally smiled on Khan as he erased the heartbreak of that play-off defeat a year ago, bringing back the cheers for the 23-year-old.
“You know it feels awesome. It’s my home course and winning here is always special. I really want to thank DGC who gave me the facilities to practice here. It’s amazing. I lost this event here last year. It was important and the way I started with the first day (61), it was amazing,” said Khan.
Winning the SAIL-SBI Open presented by Incredible India was indeed great comfort to the Indian.
He knows all about near misses and to finally attain a grandstand finish is the perfect antidote to kick-start his 2014 Asian Tour season as he now has a winner’s exemption until the end of 2015.
“It means a lot to get the exemption. You can’t imagine how important this was. Even last year, I didn’t have a country exemption and didn’t have an Asian Tour card. Losing in a play off last year was really heart-breaking. I had to make my card in five tournaments and I played really good golf last year.
I finished number one on the Indian Tour and earned my card on the Asian Tour. I was really confident of doing well this year. I was hoping to win a tournament this year on the Asian Tour and to happen in the first tournament on my home course is incredible,” said a jubilant Khan.
The door to further success has now been swung wide for Khan. And it will be on the region’s premier Tour where King Khan hopes to bask in the limelight for a long time.
“I’ve think I’ve progressed as a golfer. It’s been an exciting journey in the past few years. I’m going to play on the Asian Tour now. I’m just going to go all those tournaments that I can get myself into,” said Khan, who leads on the Order of Merit.
Players from the Asian Tour will be in action at the Open Qualifying Series-Thailand which will be held at the Amata Spring Country Club from Thursday to Friday. They will vie for four coveted spots to this this year’s Open Championship.
ASIAN TOUR ORDER OF MERIT (TOP-20)
Pos      Player Order of Merit
1          Rashid KHAN   (IND)                            $54,000.00
2          Siddikur RAHMAN   (BAN)                  $33,000.00
3          Rikard KARLBERG   (SWE)                   $18,900.00
4          Carlos PIGEM   (ESP)                           $12,430.00
4          S.S.P CHOWRASIA   (IND)                    $12,430.00
4          Martin ROMINGER   (SUI)                  $12,430.00
7          Steve LEWTON   (ENG)                       $8,550.00
8          Mithun PERERA   (SRI)                        $6,183.75
8          Jyoti RANDHAWA   (IND)                    $6,183.75
8          Anirban LAHIRI   (IND)                        $6,183.75
8          Abhijit CHADHA   (IND)                       $6,183.75
12        Scott BARR   (AUS)                              $4,280.00
12        Akinori TANI   (JPN)                             $4,280.00
12        Rahil GANGJEE   (IND)                        $4,280.00
12        Arnond VONGVANIJ   (THA)                $4,280.00
12        Sutijet KOORATANAPISAN   (THA)      $4,280.00
12        Chiragh KUMAR   (IND)                      $4,280.00
18        David LIPSKY   (USA)                           $3,475.00
18        George GANDRANATA   (INA)             $3,475.00
18        Thanyakon KHRONGPHA   (THA)        $3,475.00
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.