Dhaka, Bangladesh: Victory in the second edition of the Faldo Series Bangladesh Championship tasted especially sweet for Mohd Akber Hossain.
Twelve months ago, Hossain suffered the disappointment of losing out to Mohd Rasel on the first extra hole at Kurmitola Golf Club.
Driven on by that loss, Hossain returned to the same venue and emerged a worthy winner in the most prestigious event on Bangladesh’s amateur golfing calendar.
With rounds of 73, 67 and a closing 74, Hossain posted a total of two-under 214 in the 54-hole event that is included on the World Amateur Golf Ranking schedule.
In the overall standings, that was two strokes clear of second-placed Sonya Akhter and eight ahead of Mohammad Farhad and Afnan Mahmud Chowdhury in joint third.
As well as underscoring Hossain’s status as his country’s foremost amateur exponent, his success at Kurmitola has ensured him a place in the 10th anniversary Faldo Series Asia Grand Final, to be hosted by Sir Nick Faldo at Mission Hills China next March.
Joining Hossain there will be Chowdhury [Boys’ Under-18 champion], Ahnaf Saadman [Boys’ Under-16 champion] and Sonya Akhtar [Girls’ Under-21 champion], who serves in the Bangladesh Army.
Conspicuous by his absence, however, will be Mohd Rasel. Last year’s Faldo Series Bangladesh Championship winner struggled to reproduce his magical form of 2014 and ended tied for fourth in the Boys’ Under 21 category.
In contrast, Hossain sped out of the blocks, building a commanding lead that allowed him the luxury of being able to coast home despite four successive bogeys to close out his final round.
Six-time Major winner Faldo, Britain’s most successful golfer, said: “My thanks and congratulations go to everyone at the Bangladesh Golf Federation for organising such an outstanding tournament.
“For the second year in succession we had more than 80 players in the starting field. That such support is forthcoming is an encouraging sign for golf’s future in the country.
“My hope is that the Faldo Series Bangladesh Championship can act as a catalyst to help golf take root in Dhaka and across the country.”
Supported by The R&A and Mission Hills and endorsed by the Asian Tour and the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation, the 2015-16 Faldo Series Asia campaign stretches over 11 months and will include a minimum of 21 events in 17 countries including, for the first time, Australia.