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Golf: Lipsky wins Asian Tour Order of Merit as Lahiri falls short

Kyi Hla Han, Chairman of the Asian Tour, honours David Lipsky after the Korean-American won the 2014 Order of Merit. Photo: Asian Tour.

Kyi Hla Han, Chairman of the Asian Tour, presents David Lipsky with the Order of Merit trophy. Photo: Asian Tour.

December 15, 2014: David Lipsky was crowned this year’s Asian Tour Order of Merit champion as his closest challenger Anirban Lahiri failed to sufficiently close the gap at the Thailand Golf Championship on Sunday.

 

Lipsky waited anxiously at the clubhouse after he stumbled to a final round three-over-par 75 to finish tied 38th as Lahiri contended at the US$1 million Asian Tour event. The India No. 1 needed at least a top-four result at the Thailand Golf Championship to extend the Order of Merit race to next week’s Dubai Open, but fell short of his target when he settled for tied sixth following a 73.

 

Lipsky, 26, was delighted to end a successful year on a high note following a season that peaked in September, when he became the first Asian Tour member to win the Omega European Masters in Switzerland. The Korean-American also enjoyed four other top-10 results, including a runner-up finish at The Championship in Singapore in May.

 

With one event left, Lipsky tops the money list with US$713,901, Lahiri has US$602,833 and Prom Meesawat of Thailand is third with US$527,921.

 

“This win means a lot to me and I’m feeling a lot of pride. This is something I aspired to do. Winning a co-sanctioned event and doing all this in one year is something unexpected because I did it so fast, but now I know that if I play well, I can compete against the best,” Lipsky said.

 

“It has been an up and down year for me and Thailand is a perfect example. I thought I was playing well, but ended up in 38th place. Overall the year has been good and reflecting back on it, I couldn’t have been more proud of what I’ve accomplished.”

 

Lipsky announced his arrival on the circuit when he won the Handa Faldo Cambodian Classic in his rookie season in 2012, having topped the Qualifying School in Thailand.

 

“Each and every year my goal is to become a better player,” said the American. “Improvement isn’t a straight line. You have ups and downs, but this Order of Merit win is something I will always cherish.  I’ll think about my goals after I’ve enjoyed this a little bit longer.”

 

Lipsky also tipped his cap to Lahiri, who pushed him almost right to the end in the Order of Merit race. “Hats off to Anirban because he has played phenomenal this year and I know he is tired after playing in so many events. It was a good fight with Anirban towards the end.”

 

Lahiri was gracious in defeat, but vowed to come back a stronger and better player. “I’ll be back and winning the Order of Merit is definitely one of those things I want to do in my career,” the Indian said.

 

“Lipsky and I both fought and battled it out really hard. It is a huge thing for David to win the Order of Merit after becoming the first Asian Tour member to win at the Omega European Masters. He deserves everything he will get for winning the Order of Merit.”

 

Source: Asian Tour (www.asiantour.com); Editing by SportAsia

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