Teenager Li Masters Nanshan for OneAsia Record


Li Haotong was in celebratory mood in Nanshan.
Li Haotong was in celebratory mood in Nanshan.

Nanshan, China: Li Haotong became the youngest winner on OneAsia when the 19-year-old claimed the US$1 million Nanshan China Masters.

The Chinese teen triumphed by four strokes after shooting a final round one-under-par 70 at Nanshan International Golf Club in extreme wind.

Australian Lee Jun-seok fired a 69 to claim sole possession of second place, while Todd Baek from Korea ended two shots further adrift in third position after posting a 74.

It has been a remarkable run for Li as he also won the Henan Open on the PGA Tour China Series two weeks ago by eight strokes.

The previous youngest OneAsia winner had been Korean Kim Bi-o when claimed this very same event in 2011 aged 20.

“I think I am too young to win a Masters event,” joked Li, who finished the tournament on nine-under and US$180,000 richer. “I could not stand sometimes when I was putting as the wind was so strong. I never played in wind like this.”

With the wind gusting up to 40 miles per hour on some parts of the course, Li held his game together admirably.

After making the turn he stumbled somewhat with a bogey on the 11th and a double-bogey on the 12th that saw his lead cut to one. However, he showed his star qualities by making birdie on three of the last four holes.

“I scored 100 points on those last few holes,” said Li, who was one off the lead after the first round but led after the second and third days.

This year’s qualifying school winner, Lee was the only player today to shoot a sub-70 round.

“It was really really windy. Before I went out I was worried about it as this is not an easy course,” said Lee. “I had to keep the ball in the right spot and make pars and hang in there. I could not have played any better.”
China’s Zhou Guowu ended in fourth place after returning a 73.

His compatriot and star in the making Guan Tianlang, who last year at the age of 14 sensationally made the cut in the US Masters, closed with a 75 to tie for 33rd place.

The next event on OneAsia is the Kolon Korea Open at Woo Jeong Hills Country Club from October 23-26.

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