Kiradech peaks at the right time ahead of the Masters Tournament

Tue 27 Mar 2018

Kiradech peaks at the right time ahead of the Masters Tournament

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Singapore, March 27: Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat will head to the Masters Tournament next week in fine form following superb performances on the world stage in the last two months.

Since February, the immensely popular Thai has won the ISPS HANDA World Super 6 Perth and accepted an invitation from a prince to play on the Asian Development Tour (ADT) where he dominated the Richard Mille Brunei Championships.

In his two appearances at the World Golf Championships, Kiradech secured tied fifth results at the WGC-Mexico Championships and the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play last week where he was beaten by eventual winner Bubba Watson in the quarterfinals.

His result in Texas moved him to a career-high of 29th position on the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR), just one rung  from equalling Thongchai Jaidee’s best world ranking position of 28th which he achieved in 2015, the highest recorded by a Thai

Kiradech, the 2013 Asian Tour number one, stormed into the spotlight with his battling performances in 2018 but it was in 2017 where the Thai produced a gutsy display of golf to move into the world’s top 50 in just four months.

He was ranked 160th in the world in September and thanks to two runner-up finishes and a victory at the Thongchai Jaidee Foundation on the ADT, it gave Kiradech a fighting chance at the Asian Tour’s season-ending Indonesian Masters to break into the top-50.

Battling through a back injury, Kiradech needed a top-five result in the event and he did so in sensational style when he eagled the last hole to attain his goal and eventually finished 49th on the final 2017 OWGR to qualify for The Masters on his own merit.

“The way I fought to qualify for The Masters is amazing. Now I want to show the world an Asian can surprise and contend in a Major,” said Kiradech.

The last two months is testament that Kiradech’s career is trending in the right direction ahead of his second appearance at the hallowed grounds of Augusta National. He finished a credible tied 15th in his Masters debut in 2016 which is his best result in a Major so far.

“I’ve been comfortable with the way I’ve been playing. I’m feeling very confident and I’ve putted very well lately. I look forward to playing in Augusta. I will try to go earlier and try and feel comfortable on the greens,” said Kiradech.

He will be joined by first-timer Shubhankar Sharma of India, who leads the Asian Tour’s Habitat for Humanity Standings and the European Tour’s Race to Dubai. Sharma and Kiradech have enjoyed a fine run so far which they hope to continue at The Masters and beyond.

“I’m so happy that I’m now inside the top-30 in the world. The goal now is to try and stay inside the top-30 and hopefully earn a PGA Tour card. I will give it my best at The Masters because I have such good memories there.

“Augusta is a golf course which suits my game and I’ve been playing very well so hopefully it will be another week which I will remember,” said Kiradech.

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 Rolex (Official Timekeeper), Panasonic (Official Consumer Electronics), Habitat for Humanity (Official Sustainable Development Partner), ECCO (Official Footwear Sponsor), Titleist and FootJoy (Official Web Partner), Bloomberg TV (Official International Media Partner), Bloomberg Businessweek Chinese (Official International Media Partner), Wall Street Journal (Official International Media Partner) and Sentosa in Singapore which is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.

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