Palembang, Indonesia, October 16: Thailand’s Wisut Artjanawat handled the pressure of leading going into the final round of the US$75,000 Palembang Musi Championship today with consummate ease by strolling to a five stroke victory.
Ahead by one at the start of the day he proved to be uncatchable as he fired a bogey free six-under-par 66 at Palembang Golf Club.
He finished with an impressive four-round aggregate of 17-under-par 271.
Malaysia’s Nicholas Fung took second place after shooting a 69 while a stroke further back were Jay Bayron from the Philippines and Thailand’s Supravee Phatam.
Bayron stormed through with a 64 while Supravee returned 67.
It is Wisut’s third victory on the ASEAN PGA Tour and the US$12,111 winners’ cheque moved him up to third on the Order of Merit from 43rd. The huge leap also puts him into prime position to qualify for the US$6 million Barclays Singapore Open as the top seven from the Merit list as of November 6 make it through.
“I felt relaxed and just focused on what I had to do and nothing else. This win puts me on track to be able to work towards playing like this in the big events in the region. I am really happy,” said Wisut.
He made six birdies including on 17 and 18. The only real concern during his round came on the par-four 17th where after a stray tee shot he had to chip sideways into the fairway. Remarkably he then holed his third shot from the fairway to put one hand firmly on the trophy.
“I didn’t panic on 17. I deliberately chipped out so that I only had 50 yards left which is a distance I am very comfortable with. Holing it was a bit of luck though,” added the 29 year old from Bangkok.
On the par-four 18th he finished off in style after nailing his second shot to four feet.
Wisut is a proven winner having won the Thailand PGA Championship last year and in 2008 he won the Mercedes-Benz Masters Vietnam and the Mercedes-Benz Masters Philippines on the ASEAN PGA Tour.
He turned professional in 2006 after enjoying a distinguished amateur career which saw him claim the individual and team titles in the 2005 Putra Cup.
Playing partner Fung tried valiantly to catch Wisut and was two shots behind at the turn.
However it was not to be and a bogey on the final hole saw him slip further behind.
“I wasn’t feeling well at the start of the week. I had a stomach upset and nearly pulled out so I really am happy to finish second,” said Fung who won US$8,346.
Indonesian veteran Ilyassak, the halfway leader who was one shot behind Wisut after round three, carded a 72. The 46 year old from Aceh ended in sole possession of fifth place to be the leading local player.
The next event on the ASEAN PGA Tour is the US$60,000 Sabah Masters which will be played at Sutera Harbour Golf & Country Club from November 3 to 6.
Leading Final Round Scores:
Indonesian unless stated
271 - Wisut Artjanawat (THA) 71 68 66 66
276 - Nicholas Fung (MAS) 69 73 65 69
277 - Jay Bayron (PHI) 73 72 68 64, Supravee Phatam (THA) 72 72 66 67
278 - Ilyasyak 68 69 69 72
280 - Tanatchan Puaktes (THA) 68 71 70 71
281 - Somsak Khaoprathum (THA) 66 74 71 70
282 – Jamel Ondo 72 66 73 71
283 - Gerald Rosales (PHI) 76 70 70 67, Wittawat Sae-Ung (THA) 73 67 72 71
284 - A Abrahamsyah 70 71 73 70
285 - Ekalak Waisayakul (THA) 70 72 72 71, Marvin Dumandan (PHI) 72 73 69 71, Rory Hie 73 67 71 74
286 - Maan Nasim 75 71 72 68, Pornlapat Wongchindawest (THA) 74 73 70 69, Ade Sebul 72 71 73 70, Tepphatud Sanawong (THA) 74 70 71 71, Apichai Leelakajornjit (THA) 73 74 68 71
287 - Airil Rizman (MAS) 73 76 67 71