Mithun eyes history at Avantha Masters

Tue 12 Mar 2013

Mithun eyes history at Avantha Masters

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Noida, India, March 12: Sri Lanka’s Mithun Perera hopes his wish of winning his first Asian Tour title will come true when the €1.8 million (approximately US$2.3 million) Avantha Masters gets underway at the Jaypee Greens Golf Course on Thursday.
The talented Sri Lankan was on the verge of creating history at the Asian Tour season-opening event in Myanmar but was pipped to second place by Order of Merit leader Chawalit Plaphol of Thailand.
While Mithun could have been the first Sri Lankan to win on the Asian Tour then, he will have another shot at glory at this week’s Avantha Masters, which is tri-sanctioned by the Asian Tour, European Tour and Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI).
“That result in Myanmar really gave me lots of confidence as that has kept up my rankings on the Asian Tour. I feel proud to be the first Sri Lankan to hold a full card on the Asian Tour and my target is to win at least one event this year. It’s so near,” said Mithun who is the son to Nandasena, a famous name on the old Asian circuit during the 1980s and 1990s.
With his recent form, the Sri Lankan is confident that he can do better than his debut performance when he finished tied-29th last year.
“I had a good finish at the Avantha Masters last year and it’s really exciting to be back again.  There are many good players this week and it’ll be great to play against them,” said Mithun
As the flag bearer for golf in Sri Lanka today, Mithun also hopes he can serve as an inspiration for his fellow countrymen and take golf in his country to greater heights.
“A lot of Sri Lankans are following the Asian Tour as a result of my performances and many of them have been supporting me back home. They’ve been following my progress closely and cheering me every step of the way. I want to make my country proud and that’s why I’m also here,” said Mithun.
A stellar field that consist of no fewer than 38 Asian Tour winners including three Order of Merit champions is poised to make the Avantha Masters an intriguing contest as a host of Ryder Cup stars from the European Tour have also confirmed their participation.
Scotland’s Colin Montgomerie, the most prolific British winner in European Tour history, will make his first appearance at the Avantha Masters. He will be joined by Ryder Cup stars Ignacio Garrido of Spain, England’s David Howell, Italy’s Edoardo Molinari, Frenchman Thomas Levet and Welshman Philip Price.
The Asian Tour, which is celebrating its milestone 10th season in 2013, will feature other top contenders including Singapore’s Mardan Mamat, a three-time Tour winner, Sweden’s Rikard Karlberg, Australia’s Scott Hend and Korean-American David Lipsky.
After enjoying a sensational rookie year in 2012, Lipsky is determined to raise the bar even higher in his second year on the Asian Tour.
The Avantha Masters is Lipsky’s first Asian Tour event for 2013 and he is aiming to get his season off to a good start.
“I’ve been looking forward to coming back out here in Asia and I’m glad that I’m back at the Avantha Masters, playing with a lot of my friends and competing against several great players too,” said Lipsky.
Lipsky signalled his arrival on the Asian Tour by winning the 2012 Asian Tour Qualifying School Final Stage before going on to lift his maiden title in Cambodia. He then capped a sensational year with four other top-10s finishes.
“It was definitely a good year as a professional last year and I’m looking to improve and build on that success. I had a practice round already and the course is in phenomenal shape,” said Lipsy.
“I like to win again and build upon what I did last year and see if I can build more consistency into my game,” added Lipsky.
Meanwhile 2010 Avantha Masters champion Andrew Dodt of Australia is looking to revive his career in a place where he savoured his maiden victory three years ago.
The Australian has not reached the dizzy heights of his breakthrough year in 2010. He spent most of his 2012 season playing in Europe where his indifferent form almost caused him to lose his card.
“That win really kick-started my career. It probably hasn’t gone as well as I would’ve liked it to, but I had some decent results at the start of this season, so hopefully this tournament can be good to me again,” said Dodt.
“It was nice to win early on in my career but they say the second win is just as hard as the first one and that’s what I’m trying to achieve this week,” added the Australian.
Ends.
About the Asian Tour
In 2013, the Asian Tour will celebrate a momentous milestone with its 10th season. 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), BlackBerry (Official Communications Partner), Canon (Official Imaging Partner), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Supplier), Singha Beer (Official Beer), Srixon (Official Ball), Starwood Hotels and Resorts (Official Hotels and Resorts) 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