Kiradech taps on Thaworn's tips for Open charge

Wed 09 Jul 2014

Kiradech taps on Thaworn's tips for Open charge

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Kuala Lumpur, July 9: Reigning Asian Tour number one Kiradech Aphibarnrat is counting on tips from countryman Thaworn Wiratchant to steer him to a successful campaign at next week’s Open Championship at Royal Liverpool in Hoylake, England.
Double Order of Merit champion Thaworn finished a creditable tied 31st at Royal Liverpool in the 2006 edition after working his way into the top-10 at the halfway stage of the world’s oldest Major.
Tapping on Thaworn’s knowledge, Kiradech is leaving no stones unturned as he prepares to tee up at The Open Championship from July 17-20 where the goal is to make up for the disappointment of missing the cut in his Major debut 12 months ago.
“Thaworn he has told me that Royal Liverpool tends to make you more relaxed on the golf course. The layout is a bit more open and there are not as many bunkers as some other links courses,” said Kiradech.
“He has stressed the importance of long irons from off the tee at Royal Liverpool. With this in mind, I have been practising my long iron shots over the past few weeks. If I don’t use my driver too often, I will need to change my game plan. Hopefully when I get to Royal Liverpool, I will learn more on what is required at the course.”
When Royal Liverpool last hosted The Open eight years ago, which was then won by Tiger Woods, the course played hard and fast due to the hot summer that year. Kiradech is not concerned with whatever conditions that may welcome the players next week.
Anirban Lahiri of India Anirban Lahiri of India
“I'm not sure if the weather will be like the year when Thaworn played which was hot and hardly any wind. We must expect the winds to blow at The Open,” said Kiradech, who is currently ranked 101st in the world.
The burly Thai, who will turn 25 three days after the Open, hopes to start producing some good results after posting only one top-10 in the first half of the 2014 season, which is a sharp contrast to his successful 2013 campaign which yielded one victory and eight top-10s.
“I was struggling with my swing from the beginning of the year after my coach Natpasit Chokthanasart passed away. I got a new coach, Pompetch Saraputti this year and I’m working well with him. If my swing gets back to what it was before, I'm sure to perform well at the Open,” said Kiradech, who finished tied 43rd in the French Open last week.
“There is something missing in my swing. There is no old coach who knows my swing, or can help look at my swing. I have to recall my old swing back and it will take time with my new coach. We have been working for over two months and I'm getting more confident. If I am confident with my swing, I can play anywhere.”
The former world junior champion is looking forward to competing more regularly in the Majors and a joint 25th finish at the 2013 US PGA Championship proved that he could stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the best players in the world.
“I have to prepare harder. The competitors are strong in the Majors. I know I have to be strong in every part of my game to make the cut and then improve my game day by day. The Open has its own uniqueness. I would like to prove that my game is good on links courses."
Other Asian Tour members competing in The Open next week include current Order of Merit leader Anirban Lahiri of India, EurAsia Cup Team Asia captain Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand and Asian Tour Honorary Members K.J. Choi, Y.E. Yang and Ernie Els.
Japan’s Masanori Kobayashi, Yoshinobu Tsukada, Koumei Oda, Korea’s Kim Hyung-sung and 2011 Order of Merit champion Juvic Pagunsan will also be in the elite field next week.
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) 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.