Kedah, Malaysia: Nattawat Suvajanakorn fended off a stiff local challenge by firing a flawless seven-under-par 65 to earn his maiden win on the Asian Development Tour (ADT) at the RM200,000 (about US$44,600) PGM Darulaman Championship.
The Thai’s total of 16-under-par 272 secured him a three-shot victory over local heavyweights Danny Chia and R. Nachimuthu who signed off with rounds of 66 and 68 respectively to share second place at the event which was jointly sanctioned with the Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM).
Overnight leader Liu Yan-wei, bidding to become the first mainland Chinese player to win on the ADT, closed with a 70 to finish in fourth place at the Darulaman Golf and Country Club.
Starting his final round one shot behind Liu in second place, Nattawat made a swift charge with two birdies in his opening three holes. He extended his advantage with further birdies on holes five and eight.
The 21-year-old, who had Chia and Nachimuthu hot on his heels after the turn, maintained his composure and continued to assert himself with further birdies on holes 11, 15 and 17 to clinch his first professional victory.
“There was a lot of pressure on me. Danny and Nachimuthu are really good players and I had to stay very focused. I told myself I could not afford to drop any shots as they can easily overtake me. I concentrated really hard,” said Nattawat.
The PGM Darulaman Championship was accorded Official World Golf Ranking status, with Nattawat receiving a minimum of six points and the top-six players and ties earning points on a sliding scale.