Rivalry set to resume at Panasonic Open Championship

Wed 28 Mar 2018

Rivalry set to resume at Panasonic Open Championship

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Osaka, Japan, March 28: The action on the Asian Tour is set to resume when the region’s best players head to Osaka for the Panasonic Open Championship next month. 

The Panasonic Open Championship is also the concluding leg of the Panasonic swing where the top-three finishers in the final ranking will earn US$70,000, US$50,000 and US$30,000 respectively via a bonus pool reward scheme.

India’s Shiv Kapur currently leads the Panasonic Swing which is based on an aggregate points ranking earned by players at the following five tournaments- 2017 Thailand Open, 2017 Panasonic Open India, 2018 Maybank Championship (Malaysia), 2017 Indonesian Masters and 2018 Panasonic Open Championship.

A minimum of two events are required to be played inclusive of the Panasonic Open Championship in order to qualify for the Panasonic Swing bonus pool. There will be a x1.5 multiplier for points earned at the Panasonic Open Championship.

Having won the Panasonic Open India in emotional fashion on his home course in India last year, Kapur is hoping to repeat his magic at the Ibrakai Country Club (West course) where no less than 30 Asian Tour winners are expected to feature at the Panasonic Open Championship which is the third event to be sanctioned by the Asian Tour and Japan Golf Tour Organisation (JGTO) this year.

“Winning in India last year and getting the monkey off my back is nice. Now, I can free-wheel a bit more rather than having this pressure of not having won a tournament for a long time.

“My form is pretty good. I managed to put myself in contention in Singapore and Malaysia, but I didn’t get the job done over the weekend. I’m glad to be able to ride on the momentum of winning three times in 2017,”said Kapur.

The Indian earned the distinction of being the only player to have won three times during the 2017 season and is highly rated as one of the contenders along with Australia’s Scott Hend, 2016 Asian Tour Order of Merit champion and American Paul Peterson, who is currently fourth on the Habitat for Humanity standings. 

“You have to keep expectations in check. My goal this year is to try to be a better golfer in 2018 compared to last year. If I feel that I’m improving my game and contending regularly, my goals are achieved even if I have no wins,” said the Indian.

All eyes will also be on the Japanese field that will be spearheaded by Yusaku Miyazato and Satoshi Kodaira, who finished first and second respectively on the JGTO money list in 2017, and Ryo Ishikawa, who was the youngest golfer to break into the world’s top-50 in 2009.

Panasonic Corporation which has supported the Olympic Games as an official worldwide partner for over 25 years, has also backed professional golf at the highest level in Asia through its title sponsorship of the Panasonic OPEN India since 2011 and the Panasonic Open Championship.

Ends.