Thongchai hopes to inspire at the Open Championship

Mon 15 Jul 2013

Thongchai hopes to inspire at the Open Championship

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July 15: Thailand’s Thongchai Jaidee hopes the strong presence of Thai golfers at The Open Championship will inspire the new generation of professionals in the region to shoot for the stars.
Thongchai, who holds an unprecedented three Order of Merit titles, will be joined by current Order of Merit leader Kiradech Aphibarnrat and reigning Asian Tour number one Thaworn Wiratchant at Muirfield.
“Hopefully the three of us playing in The Open will encourage more people to play golf in Thailand. One day we hope to have a Major winner, maybe here at The Open, that would be really fantastic,” said Thongchai.
The Thai star, who will make his fifth straight appearance at the year’s third Major championship courtesy of his rankings on the European Tour, hopes to better his tied 13th result at the 2009 edition at Turnberry.
“I think the great thing about golf is you never stop learning. Even more so at The Open, with the possible changes in weather you need to able to adapt quickly,” said Thongchai, a 13-time Asian Tour winner.
“The most important thing is not to get carried away in the moment. Take each shot at a time, make the cut and then see where you are at the weekend. It’s hard though, not only can the wind and rain make it tough but it’s such an exciting tournament to be part of.”
The former paratrooper, who won his first title in Europe last season, is mindful of the unpredictable weather.
“Keeping the ball in play off the tee is critical because the bunkers on the fairways can quickly add some shots to your score. After that distance control and some imagination is also important. You will get the odd bad break and if the wind blows you will miss greens meaning your short game has to be good,” he said.
Currently ranked 58th in the world, Thongchai hopes to reproduce his sensational form which resulted in seven top-10s on the Asian Tour and European Tour earlier this year. He also finished second at the Volvo World Match Play Championship in May where he lost to Graeme McDowell of Northern Ireland.
“The last couple of tournaments I haven’t played my best golf but hopefully I can rediscover my form. Playing well at The Open is my number one goal at the moment. My game isn’t far away and I am looking forward to playing at Muirfield,” said Thongchai.
The other Asian Tour stars who will face the likes of title holder Ernie Els and world number one Tiger Woods at The Open include honorary members K.J. Choi and Y.E. Yang of Korea, Shiv Kapur of India and Kim Hyung-sung, also of Korea.
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), Canon (Official Imaging Partner), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Supplier), SAXO Capital Markets (Official Statistics Partner), 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.