Jakarta, Indonesia The Asian Tour heavyweights will be gearing up for a title assault at the inaugural Indonesian Masters at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club in two weeks time.
Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who won the SAIL Open in India for his first Asian Tour victory last month, will join illustrious countryman Thongchai Jaidee, a three-time Order of Merit champion, in the US$750,000 event from April 21 to 24.
The Indonesian Masters will be headlined by world number two Lee Westwood but the region’s top stars will be looking to outshine the Englishman, who has a terrific winning record in Asia.
Filipino star Angelo Que, Peter Karmis of South Africa, India’s Jyoti Randhawa, a former Asian Tour number one and Siddikur of Bangladesh are amongst those who are tipped to contend in the Asian Tour’s newest tournament in Indonesia.
Among the other top names who will be gunning for glory include Chinese Taipei’s Lin Wen-tang, a five-time winner, talented Australian Darren Beck and Singaporean veteran Mardan Mamat.
The in-form Kiradech will be determined to extend his rich vein of form after winning his maiden title. The big-hitting Thai, dubbed Asia’s John Daly because of his grip it-and-rip it attacking style of play, will bring with him a wealth of confidence in his first Asian Tour event in Indonesia.
Since bursting onto the scene in 2009, he has been highly regarded as one of the most promising players to emerge from Thailand and he believes his recent career breakthrough will lead him to more success.
“The Asian Tour has done a lot for me and I’m going to play as much as I can on Tour. Hopefully this win will give me more confidence to bring my game to the next level,” said the 21-year-old.
Kiradech is a big fan of Westwood and said he would relish the opportunity to tee up against him. “I admire Lee’s fighting spirit. He struggled before and fought back to become the world number one. He is a really good player with strong will power,” said Kiradech.
The effervescent Que will arrive in Indonesia with some good form behind him after finishing equal ninth at the Avantha Masters in India in February. He won his third career title in Malaysia last year but ran out of steam with self-inflicted pressure.
“I was pushing myself after my win last year. Now I’m just thinking about playing the best that I can and to not put too much pressure on myself,” said Que.
India’s Gaganjeet Bhullar, 22, will have fond memories when he returns to Indonesia as he won his maiden Asian Tour title here two years ago. He subsequently went on to lift a second title last season and got off to a fantastic start in 2011 when he won four titles on the Indian circuit earlier this year.
“I’m enjoying a good run of form and if I continue to play this way, I believe I’ll stand a good chance of winning another title,” said Bhullar.
The Indonesian Masters is earmarked to become the country’s foremost golf championship, with plans to raise its prize fund and attract other international stars to Indonesia in the coming years.
Asian Tour GolfGreedy.com