Pattaya, Thailand: Thai Prayad Marksaeng completed a magnificent wire-to-wire victory in the Singha Pattaya Open today after holding off a brave challenge from his nephew and defending champion Kwanchai Tannin, at Burapha Golf Club.
Prayad, oozing his usual effortless natural gift for the game, recorded the 14th win of his professional career after firing a closing three-under-par 69 for a stunning tournament total of 20-under.
Kwanchai, aged 28, fired a 66 and finished one shot behind his 48-year-old uncle in the second event of the season on the ASEAN PGA Tour.
Last year he produced a Prayad-type performance to win in Pattaya by an emphatic six-shot margin. It was also a start to finish win and he ended 18-under. The talented Thai also claimed the Luang Prabang Laos Open in 2013 and went on to win the Order of Merit title.
However, he clearly respected his elders and kept it in the family today with Prayad securing a winning cheque for THB435,000 (about U$13,500)
This was Prayad’s first win of the year and the continuation of a regal 2013 season in the Kingdom when he triumphed in the Singha Esan Open, which was the ASEAN PGA’s season-opening event, the Thailand Open on OneAsia and the Asian Tour’s Queen’s Cup and King’s Cup.
Kwanchai won THB256,500 (about US$7,900) while compatriot Namchok Tantipokhakul returned a 65 to finish in outright third, three behind Prayad.
The next ASEAN PGA Tour event is the PGM-ASEAN PGA Orna Championship at Orna Golf & Country Club. The tournament will be played from May 28-31 and is one of three events in 2014 jointly sanctioned with the PGM Tour, Malaysia’s flourishing domestic circuit.
This season’s ASEAN PGA Tour boasts at least 11 tournaments offering nearly US$1 million in overall prize money and the Singha Pattaya Open is part of the newly launched ‘Road to the Sabah Masters’, the tournament where the 2014 Order of Merit champion will be crowned.