Q-School graduates enjoy successful season

Fri 20 Dec 2013

Q-School graduates enjoy successful season

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Singapore, December 20: Richard T. Lee of Canada is among six Asian Tour Qualifying School graduates who are enjoying a successful and lucrative 2013 season on the region’s premier Tour.
The 23-year-old Lee finished second at the Qualifying School in Thailand earlier this year and has gone on to enjoy a strong rookie year with three top-10 results. He has made 10 out of 11 cuts and is in the running for Rookie of the Year award when the season concludes in January.
The only event where he missed the weekend rounds was when he retired at the SAIL-SBI Open in India. His strong performances have earned him a cool US$106,862 for 30th position on the Order of Merit which is sufficient for him to earn full playing rights on the Asian Tour in 2014.
Joining him on the success trail is Nicholas Fung of Malaysia, who has also enjoyed a stellar year highlighted by two top-five results which has seen him jump to 31st position on the Merit list with a haul of US$105,200.
The young Malaysia sharpened his game on the Asian Development Tour (ADT), the secondary circuit in Asia which all Qualifying School participants are eligible to play in, before going on to earn full playing rights on the main Tour.
By winning one title on the ADT coupled by solid results on both the Tours, Fung has also made a giant leap on the Official World Golf Ranking points, moving up from 1416th to 235th position in a span of 12 months after earning 33.25 world ranking points throughout 2013.
“I’m surprised with the jump on the world rankings,” said the 23-year-old Fung. “My initial target was just to maintain my position as the highest ranked Malaysian so that I get to play in the CIMB Classic but I didn’t expect to jump another 300 spots to my current 235th position.
“It’s great that I managed to earn my Asian Tour for next year. My aim will be to play as many events as I can so that I can keep up with my good form and momentum. It doesn’t matter how big or small the event is. I just want to enjoy my game and play more good golf,” added Fung.
Among the other graduates who have successfully retained their Asian Tour cards for 2014 by fighting their way into the top-60 on the Order of Merit include Rahil Ganjee (US$97,874) of India, Sam Cyr (US$97,271) of the United States, Matthew Stieger (US$88,128) of Australia and Carlos Pigem (US$87,317) of Spain.
Despite missing out on an Asian Tour card at Qualifying School earlier this year, teenager Jazz Janewattananond of Thailand has made full use of his limited playing opportunities to earn a spot among the elite Asian Tour cast next year with two top-five finishes.
Like Jazz, Bryce Easton of South Africa also sang the same tune as he overcame his disappointment at Qualifying School, where he finished one shot from the top-40 and ties, with a second place result at the Chiangmai Golf Classic presented by PTT.
Jazz has earned US$104,500 to sit in 33rd place on the Order of Merit while Easton has accumulated US$86,159 to lie in 45th position on the rankings.
“I’m glad I’ve managed to keep my card. My game has been pretty consistent this season and if you continue playing consistently and make cuts in every event you play, you will pretty much be able to keep your card,” said Jazz.
Meanwhile the fate of Steve Lewton of England (US$73,861), Qualifying School winner Chan Kim of the United States (US$73,491), Australian duo Jake Higginbottom (US$70,963) and Adam Groom (US$70,295), ranked 53rd, 55th, 59th and 60th respectively on the Merit list respectively will depend on their performances in January.
In 2014, the Qualifying School First Stage will be held over two sections, with Section A to be held at the Imperial Lakeview Golf Club and Royal Thai Army Sports Center, Suan Son Pradipat from January 29 to February 1.
Section B will be staged over three courses – the Imperial Lakeview Golf Club, Springfield Royal Country Club and Royal Thai Army Sports Center – from February 5 to 8.
The all-important Final Stage, where players will fight for top-40 finishes to earn playing rights on the premier Asian Tour in 2014, will be held at the Springfield Royal Country Club and Imperial Lakeview Golf Club from February 12-15.
Players who wish to register for the 2014 Qualifying School can download the Entry Form at https://s3-ap-southeast-1.amazonaws.com/asiantourattachment/2014-Asian-Tour-Q-School-Form.pdf. Closing date for entries is January 8, 2014.
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), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Supplier), Saxo Capital Markets (Official Statistics Partner), Singha Beer (Official Beer), Srixon (Official Ball), Subway (Official Quick Service Restaurant), 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.