Tabuena has unfinished business #Taiwan_Masters

Tue 27 Sep 2016

Tabuena has unfinished business #Taiwan_Masters

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Tamsui, Chinese Taipei, September 27: Miguel Tabuena of the Philippines has high hopes at the US$800,000 Mercuries Taiwan Masters, an event which has helped his career in many ways.
The 21-year-old finished fourth in the 2011 edition in his rookie year and he has now set his sights on winning the long-running Asian Tour tournament which starts on Thursday at the Taiwan Golf and Country Club.
Tabuena will contend for the title against defending champion Danny Chia of Malaysia, man of the moment Chan Shih-chang of Chinese Taipei and Thailand’s Phachara Khongwatmai in the event which is celebrating its 30th edition.
Phachara Khongwatmai of Thailand Phachara Khongwatmai of Thailand
Tabuena believes the result in the Mercuries Taiwan Masters five years ago helped him gain valuable experience in his fledging career where he won his first Asian Tour title last year and represented his country in the Olympics last month.
Ranked fifth on the Order of Merit, the young Filipino is the second highest ranked player in the elite field this week after home favourite Chan, who won the Asia-Pacific Diamond Cup in Japan last week.
“It was my first year on Tour and I finished fourth there. It gave me a chance to keep my Asian Tour card back then. Sadly, I lost my card by about US$250 at the end of that season,” said Tabuena.
“But I will never forget the experience of losing in the event and losing my card. If I didn’t lose my card then, I wouldn’t have worked as hard as I have now. I honestly, I don’t think I will be in this position if that didn’t happen to me,” he added.
Teen titan Phachara will also play in the Mercuries Taiwan Masters a week after contending for his first Asian Tour title in Japan before finishing in a share of fourth place. Like Tabuena, the Thai will soak in the positives in defeat.
“I didn’t play well on the last day (in Japan) but I’m happy because I saved my Asian Tour card. I hit it so badly on Sunday and I’m not sure why. I think I need more practice. This is my first time playing on this golf course. I’m feeling confident and now that I have my Tour card for next year, I will play without any pressure,” smiled the 17-year-old Phachara.
Englishman Steve Lewton is hoping a return to the scene of his victory in 2014 will spark a return to form as he made only three cuts in 11 appearances in 2016.
Steve Lewton of England Steve Lewton of England
“We had good weather when I won but it was very windy. I don’t mind if we have the same weather. Shooting one or two under is good enough here. You can’t be frustrated because the bogeys will come.
“Hopefully good old memories will bring back some form this week. I had a couple of injuries in the last year and a half (bulging disc in the neck) but I’ve overcome that so I’m ready to play well again,” said Lewton.
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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