BOTH READY FOR TITLE DEFENCE AT JOHNNIE WALKER CAMBODIAN OPEN
Siem Reap, Cambodia: Marcus Both of Australia returns to the scene of his famous victory knowing that he is in his best form to defend his title at this week’s Johnnie Walker Cambodian Open which tees off on Thursday.
Both ended a six-year title drought when he won last year’s event and is now looking for a result that will round up his year on a high after coming off an impressive campaign in India last week.
“I feel like I’m playing quite well as I finished tied-fifth in India which is my best result of the season. I’ve been on-form for the last couple of months and bit by bit, I’ve been making less and less mistakes, improving in all aspects of my game,” said Both.
“It’s nice to come back to somewhere where you’ve played well before and it would make it even more special if you can win again,” added Both.
Having won his second Asian Tour title at the Phokeethra Country Club last year, the 31-year-old Australian hopes that his local knowledge of the golf course will give him an added advantage over the rest of the elite field who will be teeing up at this week’s US$300,000 full field Asian Tour event.
“I say there are five tricky holes at this golf course. They are the sixth, seventh, eighth, 14thand 15th holes. The fairways are quite soft with plenty of trouble angles and hazards but in my eyes, if you can get through these holes and score well on the few other holes out there, you’ll have a good chance of doing well,” said Both.
Meanwhile Thailand’s Thaworn Wiratchant could surpass compatriot Thongchai Jaidee as the player with the most number of Asian Tour wins if his past performances at the Johnnie Walker Cambodian Open are indications of another good showing in Cambodia.
The 43-year-old veteran narrowly missed out on the inaugural title after finishing in equal third in 2007. He then posted a tied-eighth finish in 2008 followed by an equal 30th place last year.
“I enjoy playing on this golf course as it suits my game. Except for last year, I’ve always finished inside the top-10 here and I’m looking forward to improving that record with a win now,” said Thaworn who jointly holds the record 12 of Asian Tour victories with Thongchai who will also be headlining this week’s event.
As the penultimate event on the Asian Tour Schedule before the season finale Black Mountain Masters in Hua Hin next week, the spotlight will also be turned on players with a fighting chance to earn their full playing privileges on the Asian Tour for next season.
Only the top 61 players on the Asian Tour’s Order of Merit will earn their Tour card for 2011.
Chinese Taipei’s Lu Wen-teh who is currently ranked 63rd on the Asian Tour Order of Merit, knows that he has to make the best of his opportunities in the season’s last two events to secure his Tour card for next season.
“I’ve got find the form that led me to my wins on the Asian Tour before. The reality is that I’ve got to play well over the next two weeks and if I can do so, I believe everything will take care of itself,” said Lu, a five-time Asian Tour winner.
Photo - Asian Tour
Asian Tour GolfGreedy.com