Photo - Asian Tour
THAWORN MOVES UP TO SIXTH PLACE ON ASIAN TOUR ORDER OF MERIT LIST
Kuala Lumpur: Thai star Thaworn Wiratchant has moved up to sixth place on the Asian Tour’s Order of Merit after securing a record equaling 12th career title at the weather-shortened Yeangder Tournament Players Championship in Taipei.
The veteran was declared the winner on Sunday after the fourth round was cancelled by officials due to Typhoon Fanapi and he happily collected the winner’s cheque of US$47,550 which took his season’s winnings to US$166,582.
A jump of four places from his previous position may not seem significant but with the top-10 players after the Iskandar Johor Open next month qualifying for the inaugural US$6 million CIMB Asia Pacific Classic, Malaysia and the leading five non-exempt players qualifying for the US$7 million WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai, Thaworn, who equaled Thongchai Jaidee’s 12 victories, knows that every dollar counts from here onwards.
Countryman Chinnarat Phadungsil, who finished runner-up in the inaugural Taipei event, moved up to 15th position on the merit list with US$91,635 while third-placed Iain Steel of Malaysia jumped into the safe zone in 54th position with US$28,751.
The top-60 players at the end of the season will retain their full playing rights for the 2011 season.
Korea’s Noh Seung-yul remains atop the Order of Merit with US$630,616, followed by Australian Marcus Fraser on US$534,149. Another Australian, Andrew Dodt, is third with US$392,507.
The top-three players will be in action when the Asian Tour travels to Kobe, Japan for the Asia-Pacific Panasonic Open this week.
The ¥150,000,000 (approximately US$1.7 million) event starts on Thursday at the Rokko Kokusai Golf Club and may well change the shape of the Order of Merit race.
The Panasonic Open is jointly sanctioned with the Japan Golf Tour where its reigning number one Ryo Ishikawa and title holder Daisuke Maruyama will also headline the field.
ASIAN TOUR ORDER OF MERIT – TOP-20
Pos Player Order of Merit
1. NOH Seung-yul (KOR) 630,616
2. Marcus FRASER (AUS) 534,149
3. Andrew DODT (AUS) 392,507
4. K.J. CHOI (KOR) 235,838
5. Tetsuji HIRATSUKA (JPN) 212,463
6. Thaworn WIRATCHANT (THA) 166,582
7. Rhys DAVIES (WAL) 159,156
8. Thongchai JAIDEE (THA) 138,119
9. Kiradech APHIBARNRAT (THA) 134,653
10. Angelo QUE (PHI) 125,736
11. Jason KNUTZON (USA) 118,818
12. Mardan MAMAT (SIN) 117,622
13. Gaganjeet BHULLAR (IND) 105,511
14. Jbe KRUGER (RSA) 95,540
15. Chinnarat PHADUNGSIL (THA) 91,635
16. CHAN Yih-shin (TPE) 84,625
17. Chapchai NIRAT (THA) 80,615
18. Rahil GANGJEE (IND) 79,193
19. Hideto TANIHARA (JPN) 75,996
20. Peter KARMIS (RSA) 75,947