Triumphant Singapore wins Prudential Causeway Trophy

Sun 09 Jun 2013

Triumphant Singapore wins Prudential Causeway Trophy

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Singapore, June 9: Singapore enjoyed a convincing victory over perennial rival Malaysia with a 15 ½ - 8 ½ win over their neighbours to lift the inaugural Prudential Causeway Trophy on Sunday.
Having seized a 7 ½ - 4 ½ lead over Malaysia heading into the final Singles showdown, the host needed 4 ½ points from 11 matches to clinch the inaugural Prudential Causeway Trophy.
The match between Mitchell Slorach and Akhmal Tarmizee was halved as Slorach was forced to withdraw due to a nagging wrist injury.
Malaysia, who badly needed early points to stage a comeback after trailing overnight leader Singapore by three points, got off to a good start when Sukree Othman thrashed M.Murugiah 7 & 5 to reduce their deficit.
Despite going 1-up in the opening hole, Murugiah was no match for Sukree as the Malaysian won eight out of the next 12 holes to effectively end the contest with Murugiah.
Singapore however edged closer to victory when Mardan Mamat triumphed over Airil Rizman, a former Asian Tour winner, 4 & 3 to extend Singapore’s lead to nine in the third match.
The 45-year-old repeated his heroics when he returned to the scene of his biggest career victory where he won the Singapore Masters in 2006 at the Laguna National Golf and Country Club.
“I really enjoy coming back to Laguna National as I’ve lots of fond memories here. Today’s win for Singapore just adds to those memories. It was a good victory for Singapore and I’m glad I did my part in making the country proud,” said Mardan.
Danny Chia provided a brief reprieve for Malaysia by battling to halve his match with Koh Dengshan.
Chia, who holds the distinction of being the first Malaysian winner on the Asian Tour when he won the Taiwan Open back in 2002, was 3-up with six holes to play.
However, a spirited Koh dug deep to win four consecutive holes to go 1-up with two holes to play. Chia fought back gallantly with a crucial birdie to salvage half point for Malaysia.
“I would say the golf course got us this week. The format was different from what we are used to playing but nevertheless I think on a personal level, I got to learn a lot about my golf after playing this course,” said Chia.
Evergreen Poh Eng Wah, who will be turning 50 in November this year, showed he could still match his younger rivals when he beat Nicholas Fung, 27 years his junior, 3&2.
“Golf is not an old man’s game. We can play for as long as we’re mentally and physically fit. I’m happy that I’ve managed to prove that this week,” said Poh.
Murthy Somasundaram and Nachimuthu Ramasamy secured two more points for Malaysia when they beat Vincent Phua and Lam Zhiqun 7 & 5 and 3 & 1 respectively.
Choo Tze Huang then made it 11 ½  for Singapore when he defeated S.Sivachandhran 3 & 2 and it was all over for Malaysia when Lam Chih Bing won his match 2 & 1 against Anis Helmi to give Singapore an unassailable lead.
“It’s an honour to clinch the winning point for Singapore and I couldn’t have asked for a better way of doing it,” said Lam.
Singapore’s non-playing captain Lip Ooi paid tribute to his players and hailed them as the best team for making Singapore proud.
“This win is a proud moment for all of us in Singapore. We fought really hard out there and I want to thank my team for making this a day to remember. The Malaysian team put up a strong challenge but we showed that we can be up for it,” said Ooi.
The three-day event has been billed as the clash of the titans between the best golfers from both sides of the causeway and was sanctioned by the Singapore Professional Golfers’ Association (SPGA) and Professional Golf Association Malaysia.
For more information, please visit the event’s official website, http://www.causewaytrophy.com
Ends.