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Golf: Prayad, 49, nails ninth Asian Tour title at Queen’s Cup in Samui

Prayad Marksaeng closed with a 65 to win the Queen’s Cup for the second time in three years. Photo: Asian Tour.

Prayad Marksaeng closed with a 65 to win the Queen’s Cup for the second time in three years. Photo: Asian Tour.

June 21, 2015: Thai veteran Prayad Marksaeng tamed the ‘beast of Samui’ for the second time in three years by closing with a six-under-par 65 to win the US$300,000 Queen’s Cup by two shots on Sunday.

 

Battle-hardened Prayad overturned a three-shot deficit by firing nine birdies against three bogeys for a winning total of 14-under-par 270 at the Santiburi Samui Country Club, dubbed the ‘beast of Samui’ due to its challenging layout.

 

Countryman Thanyakon Khrongpha matched Prayad’s efforts on the final day to grab second place while Thai teen Jazz Janewattananond (66) and Bangladesh No. 1 Siddikur Rahman (68) finished third on 10-under.

 

Mithun Perera of Sri Lanka carded a 69 to finish two shots back in fifth place on his own while American Paul Peterson (68), Canadian Richard T. Lee (70), India’s S.S.P. Chawrasia (70) and Japanese Akinori Tani (75) shared sixth on seven-under.

 

Prayad, who first won the Queen’s Cup in 2013, was delighted to clinch his ninth Asian Tour title, despite being three decades older than third-placed Jazz.

 

“To be able to win at 49 years old is just incredible for me. I am very proud of myself,” said Prayad, who took home the winner’s prize purse of US$54,000.

 

“I started with a bogey, but I wasn’t worried as there were plenty of holes to go. I knew Thanyakon was making a fast charge, but I didn’t really feel the pressure as he was playing ahead of me. I thought it doesn’t matter if I lose because I was already sure that the trophy will remain in Thailand.”

 

Thanyakon, 24, was left to rue another missed chance for a maiden victory. The Thai started off promisingly with a birdie on four and an eagle on six before adding three more birdies after the turn on the 10th, 12th and 14th holes. However, a costly bogey on 16th dashed his title hopes.

 

“I am disappointed, to be honest. I had come close to winning for a couple of times last year and I have been wanting to win on the Asian Tour for so long. I played so well all day. I was really going for the win out there until that bogey on the 16th,” said Thanyakon, who posted two runner-up finishes last season.

 

“It got really windy on the 16th tee and it was difficult to gauge the direction. I hit my tee shot off and I knew I didn’t have a chance anymore. Overall, I am still happy with how I finished. I was six-over at some stage earlier in the tournament and to be able to finish in second place now, I can’t complain.”

 

Jazz, 19, capped his best finish on the Asian Tour after producing an impressive back-nine 31, highlighted by eagles on 16 and 18, and three birdies against one bogey at the Samui course, where he had earlier enjoyed a tied-fourth finish in 2013.

 

“I had a bad lie off the tee on 16, but I told myself not to make any mistake. I thought I hit my second shot pretty close. I didn’t expect the ball to go in until I heard the crowd cheering,” Jazz said.

 

“I hit a good shot on the last and hit my second shot pretty close. My short game was good, so I was confident. I didn’t expect the ball to go in again, but it did!”

 

Siddikur was pleased to cap his fifth top-five finish at the Queen’s Cup. “I am happy with another top-five finish as I played with no expectations,” the Bangladeshi said.

 

“I didn’t hit the ball as well today, but I am happy I made four birdies. I had a good finish to the round as I birdied the last hole to grab a share of third.”

 

Queen’s Cup Samui Golf Tournament, Santiburi Samui CC, Koh Samui, Thailand

270 – Prayad MARKSAENG (THA) 69-65-71-65.

272 – Thanyakon KHRONGPHA (THA) 74-65-68-65.

274 – Jazz JANEWATTANANOND (THA) 69-72-67-66, Siddikur RAHMAN (BAN) 69-70-67-68.

276 – Mithun PERERA (SRI) 67-72-68-69.

277 – Paul PETERSON (USA) 69-72-68-68, Richard T. LEE (CAN) 69-67-71-70, S.S.P. CHAWRASIA (IND) 73-67-67-70, Akinori TANI (JPN) 68-70-64-75.

279 – Thaworn WIRATCHANT (THA) 69-68-76-66, Danny CHIA (MAS) 69-69-72-69.

280 – Thitiphun CHUAYPRAKONG (THA) 71-70-70-69, Wolmer MURILLO (VEN) 72-66-71-71, Chinnarat PHADUNGSIL (THA) 68-71-70-71, Piya SWANGARUNPORN (THA) 74-66-67-73.

281 – Miguel TABUENA (PHI) 73-69-70-69, LEE Chieh-Po (TPE) 73-69-70-69, Lindsay RENOLDS (CAN) 74-69-69-69, Atthaphon SRIBOONKAEW (THA) 66-71-70-74.

282 – Antonio LASCUNA (PHI) 76-69-69-68, Niclas JOHANSSON (SWE) 68-76-70-68, Namchok TANTIPOKHAKUL (THA) 71-73-69-69, Jeunghun WANG (KOR) 68-71-73-70, Pannakorn UTHAIPAS (THA) 68-72-70-72.

283 – Chawalit PLAPHOL (THA) 74-70-73-66, Sorachut HANSAPIBAN (THA) 73-71-74-65, Sutijet KOORATANAPISAN (THA) 77-66-68-72.

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

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