Mardan seeks winning return #BBO

Tue 31 Jan 2017

Mardan seeks winning return #BBO

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Dhaka, January 31: Singaporean veteran Mardan Mamat will be looking to boost his confidence and get into a winning momentum when he returns to the Kurmitola Golf Club for the US$300,000 Bashundhara Bangladesh Open which starts on Wednesday.
Mardan Mamat of Singapore Mardan Mamat of Singapore
The 49-year-old Mardan claimed his fifth Asian Tour title at the inaugural Bashundhara Bangladesh Open in 2015 but missed out on a chance to defend his title last year as his father was sick.
Having failed to make the halfway cuts in the first two events of the season, Mardan is eager to turn the corner by capping another good result at the full-field Asian Tour event, which is celebrating its third consecutive edition on the region’s premier Tour this season.
Mardan will contend for the title against India’s Jeev Milkha Singh, a six-time Asian Tour winner, young talent Shubhankar Sharma and local hero Siddikur Rahman, in what is the third leg of the Asian Tour schedule this season.
Singh, who enjoyed three top-10 finishes last season, is eyeing a successful debut at the Bashundhara Bangladesh Open. The 45-year-old Indian hailed the development of golf in Bangladesh and praised Siddikur for being the flag-bearer of the country.
The 20-year-old Sharma enjoyed a superb start to the season with tied-11th and tied-ninth finishes in Singapore and Myanmar respectively. He will be bidding for a breakthrough win on the Asian Tour this week.
Siddikur, a two-time winner on the Asian Tour, will spearhead the local charge which consists of 32 local players and six amateurs.
Interesting facts of the day:

  • Shubhankar Sharma of India Shubhankar Sharma of India
    Mardan’s first triumph in the region stretches back to 2004 where he came charging back from three shots to triumph in India. Subsequently, his four other wins have been impressive start-to-finish victories, including his fifth and last victory at the 2015 Bashundhara Bangladesh Open.

  • Singh is a two-time Order of Merit winner on the Asian Tour. He is also a board member of the Asian Tour.

  • Sharma finished third on his own at the 2016 Bashundhara Bangladesh Open. It was his best result on the Asian Tour since turning professional in 2013.

  • Siddikur finished tied-38th and tied-35th in the last two editions. He will be vying to become the first Bangladeshi to win his National Open.

  • Siddikur is attached to the Kurmitola Golf Club as an honorary member. He has previously worked as a ball boy at his home course to support his studies.

Key Quotes:
"I remember I putted really well to win the tournament two years ago. That’s the key to win I think. If you can putt well, you can easily secure a top-10 finish anywhere." - Mardan Mamat

Mardan Mamat (SGP)
It’s nice to be back here. It’s always nice to be back on a course where you have won before. The course still looks pretty much the same, just extensions of tee boxes on some holes. Other than that, everything is good. I like the weather here.
I remember I putted really well to win the tournament two years ago. That’s the key to win I think. If you can putt well, you can easily secure a top-10 finish anywhere.
I don’t want to have any expectations this week. I just want to build up my confidence for the season ahead. Every tournament is important for me so I will definitely try my best this week. Hopefully I can cap a good result to regain some confidence in my game.
It is good to see the development of the game here in Bangladesh. It’s great that the tournament is returning for the third consecutive edition this week. It’s always a good thing when you have your own National Open in the country. It will help to grow the game a lot.
Jeev Milkha Singh of India Jeev Milkha Singh of India
Jeev Milkha Singh (IND)
It’s my first time here and it’s been good so far. The course is very challenging. You need a lot of planning and distance control. The game is feeling much better than last two weeks. I found something good. It was a bit rusty because it’s the start of the year but everything is falling in place.
I am looking forward to playing good golf now in the next few weeks. It will be a good test of golf this week. I think I will enjoy it. I just want to get my confidence up. I am playing good but I need to get the job done. That’s my goal this week. I am going to work hard on that, stick to my routines and process and hopefully the results will show.
The development of the game here in Bangladesh has been fantastic. What Siddikur (Rahman) has done for the golf in Bangladesh is great. He has given the local players a lot of encouragement and hope. I believe golf will continue to grow in Bangladesh and hopefully we have more tournaments here.
Shubhankar Sharma (IND)
The game’s feeling pretty good. I played well last two weeks. I am very happy with the way I am playing now so let’s see what happens. I was hoping for a good start to the season and I got what I want. I think I am getting pretty close to a breakthrough on the Asian Tour.
I am feeling very confident coming to this week. I played really good last year. The top two guys players really well. I will take the same approach as last year.  I am feeling more comfortable playing on the Asian Tour now. I feel like I belonged here now and I have the chance to contend for a breakthrough title.
The course is looking better than last year. The greens are much nicer. It suits my game a lot. It’s slightly narrow. The greens are hard and not too fast, just about the right speed. You need to hit more fairways here to score. It’s not a long course.
Siddikur Rahman of Bangladesh Siddikur Rahman of Bangladesh
Siddikur Rahman (BAN)
I am very thankful to the sponsors and Kurmitola Golf Club for their unwavering support. They have done a great job in hosting the event the last two years. It has gone a long way in helping the growth of the game in the country.
Winning my National Open would be the best thing that can happen in my career. I haven’t been able to play my best in the last two years but I have always got a very strong home support. I know they have high expectations of me. I hope I won’t disappoint them this time.
For sure there will be pressure, playing in front of my home crowd and on my home course. But I will learn to deal with that. I have won on my home course before so I know I can do it. I know my way around that course so I hope to take advantage of that.
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 ECCO (Official Footwear Sponsor), FENIX XCell (Official Apparel Supplier), Hilton Worldwide (Official Hotel Partner), Titleist (Official Web Partner), Bloomberg TV (Official International Media Sponsor), Bloomberg Businessweek Chinese (Official Business Publication Sponsor) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). Sentosa, Singapore is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.
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