Lin Pulls Off Stunning Win in Brunei Open

Sun 02 Sep 2007

Lin Pulls Off Stunning Win in Brunei Open

Bandar Seri Begawan, September 2: Chinese Taipei?s Lin Wen-tang overcame a six-shot deficit to lift the US$300,00 Brunei Open title over a faltering Adam Le Vesconte of Australia on Sunday.

Lin produced a stunning fightback with a flawless six-under-par 65 in the final round at the Empire Hotel and Country Club to claim his second Asian Tour title by two strokes from overnight leader Le Vesconte, who carded a 73.

Filipino Tony Lascuna ended a fine fortnight with a second successive top-three finish after he shot a 70 to share third place with Chinese Taipei veteran Lu Wen-teh (70) and Australian Scott Barr (66), three behind the winner.

Thailand?s exciting prospect Panuwat Muenlek was sixth after a 67 while last year?s winner Wang Ter-chang, also from Chinese Taipei, settled for tied seventh place, six shots back.

A brilliant Lin nailed six birdies on the day against no bogeys and accumulated a winning total of 15-under-par 269. ?The winning feeling is simply wonderful! I started the day six behind the leader but I did not have a specific game plan. I told myself that every shot that I hit had to be a very good one.

?I said whatever happens today, I just wanted to play a good round of golf and we?ll see what happens. I knew that I was closing in on the leader and I was feeling very nervous but I told myself to stay focused and maintain my composure,? said Lin

Lin, who took home US$47,550 and rose to 30th place on the Asian Tour?s UBS Order of Merit, launched his title charge with four birdies on the front nine to trail Le Vesconte by one at the turn.

With the Aussie dropping into a tie for the lead with a bogey on 10, Lin snatched the lead for the first time when he drained an eight footer for birdie on 12. The 33-year-old led by two following another six foot birdie conversion but was forced to save a crucial par from four feet on 17 to hold off his pursuers.

?The par save was very important and I just managed to roll that it. That was an important hole in this tournament,? said Lin, who also qualified for the HSBC Champions in Shanghai in November.

Le Vesconte held at least a share of the lead since the opening round and was disappointed with his finish. His overnight four-shot lead disappeared quickly with a costly triple bogey six on the fourth hole when he needed three shots to escape the greenside bunker after catching a horrendous lie.

A one-hour 15 minute weather suspension provided the Australian with a brief respite as he fought back with two birdies but with his game failing to fire on all cylinders, Lin simply swept past him on the home stretch.

?The triple bogey hurt my chances,? said Vesconte. ?I pulled my six iron into the bunker face and got plugged and I had no stance what so ever, and needed three shots to get out.

?I played okay for the next few holes but I kept making silly bogeys. The putter wasn?t good today. I missed a few putts from three or four feet which I haven?t done all week. It just wasn?t to be.?

Vesconte rued a three-putt bogey on 15 and another short par miss on 17. ?It?s disappointing but I?m happy with the last two weeks (where he was 10th in Malaysia). It shows I can still compete which is what I?ve been lacking drive wise because I?ve been playing so badly since my win (in the 2005 Philippine Open),? he said.

It has been a dream two weeks for Lascuna, who finished tied second in last week?s Iskandar Johor Open in Malaysia. His third place cheque of US$15,130 will safely keep him inside the top-60 of the UBS Order of Merit, which is the cut-off to qualify for the season-ending Volvo Masters of Asia in Bangkok and earn full playing rights for the 2008 season.

?I?m very happy. My target today was top five, so this is good. It?s nice. At least now I?ve kept my card for next season,? said Lascuna.

He started the day four back but fought into contention with two birdies on the front nine. But an outward 37 put paid to his title hopes. ?I hit some wrong irons on the back nine. I bogeyed 16 when I hit my five iron to the back of the green and the sand trap and that ended my chances.?

About the Brunei Open 2007

The Brunei Open is celebrating its third edition following its historic launch in 2005. The Championship is supported and organised by Brunei Tourism at the Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources. The Brunei Open will once again be staged at the award-winning Empire Hotel and Country Club, which is a Jack Nicklaus Signature course. The Brunei Open 2007 is supported by Brunei Shell Petroleum Sdn Bhd and other sponsors include the Empire Hotel & Country Club as the Host Venue, NexTV, Standard Chartered Bank, Srixon (Official Ball), Cross Creek (Official Apparel), Sehat and CityNeon.  The event is also supported by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports. The Brunei Open is sanctioned by the Asian Tour, which is the official sanctioning body for professional golf tournaments in Asia, and by the Brunei Darussalam Golf Association (BDGA).

About Brunei Tourism

Brunei Darussalam, a peaceful and wealthy kingdom on the northern shores of Borneo, is known for having one of the most pristine tropical rainforest environments anywhere, as well as for the pomp and opulence of its centuries old monarchy, steeped in ancient Malay traditions. With easy international direct access through its Royal Brunei Airlines carrier and other regional airlines, and with an up-market product and image appealing to discerning travelers, Brunei is an exciting and safe new destination waiting to be discovered.

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 UBS (Naming rights sponsor to the UBS Order of Merit and Official Financial Services Provider), Sofitel (Official Hotel), Srixon (Official Ball), Pin High (Official Apparel Partner) and ESPN Star Sports (Official Regional TV Broadcaster). Sentosa, Singapore?s premier island resort getaway, is the Home of the Asian Tour.