Thursday, March 21, 2013

Aphibarnrat takes clubhouse lead on seven-under

THAILAND'S rising star Kiradech Aphibarnrat battled through fatigue for a sizzling seven-under-par 65 to take the clubhouse lead in the rain-disrupted US$2.75 million Maybank Malaysian Open opening round yesterday.
  Play was stopped at 4pm, and called off for the day an hour later when torrential rain flooded the greens and lightning lit up the sky like it was Merdeka celabrations. There were still 78 (total 156) players who had yet to complete their First Round.
  However, there are three others who finished their rounds and are snapping at the Thai's heels at six-under and they are Anders Hanson of Denmark, Edoardo Molinari of Italy and Gregory Bourdy of France. Scotland's Scott Jamieson is also at six under, but his play charged was stopped at the 10th hole by rain.
  Malaysia's S. Murthy was also in his element as he fired five-under 67 to place himself in contention for a good finish on Sunday.
  Aphibarnrat, only 23, is suffering from a thyroid disease, and had to hold back from blasting his tee shots to preserve energy on a steamy morning at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club.
  Despite the change in his game plan, Kiradech posted eight birdies against one bogey to hold a one-shot club-house lead.
  “The weather is too hot and the thyroid disease is making me feel tired. Honestly, I didn’t have enough energy to hit long drives. I’m still taking medication for my thyroid condition and I’ll consider going for operation when I consult my doctor in six months,” said Kiradech.
  Kiradech is enjoying a sensational season so far. He finished third at the Asian Tour’s season-opening Zaykabar Myanmar Open and qualified for his maiden appearance at The Open Championship by winning the International Final Qualifying – Asia in Thailand earlier this month. He also placed fourth at last week’s Avantha Masters.
  However, he is keeping his hopes of winning a second Asian Tour title at bay considering the condition he is in.
   “I didn’t force myself or any of my golf shots. I didn’t set myself any goals for this week. I didn’t tell myself that I should finish in the top-five or win this event. I want to take things shot by shot. When you don’t have power or energy, you can’t force yourself,” said Kiradech.
   Molinari, a two-time European Tour winner, shot his best score since March last year after working with a new coach, Sean Foley, who also trains Tiger Woods.
   “It was a good round of golf…finally. I was able to make a lot of putts but missed a short one on eight and a few other chances. I’ve been struggling for a while so it was good to have a good first round,” said Molinari.
   “He (Foley) is making big changes. I need big changes because I didn’t like the way I was playing last year. I felt it wasn’t right. I felt it was time to change. I like what he says and I have a lot more knowledge on what I’m doing on the golf course. As soon as I missed a shot on the course then I know how to fix it,” he added.
  Three-time Major winner Padraig Harrington made a good start with a three under par 69 to share tenth, but World Number Three Luke Donald could only manage a 74.

Rain spoils half the party at KLGCC...

65 Kiradech Aphibarnrat (Thai).
66 Anders Hansen (Den), Edoardo Molinari (Ita), Gregory Bourdy (Fra).
67 S. Murthy (Mas), Victor Dubisson (Fra).
68 LEE Sung (S. Kor), Fredrik Andersson (Swe), Peter Lawrie (Irl), Adilson da Silva (Bra).
69 Padraig Harrington (Irl), David Howell (Eng), Alexander Noren (Swe), Marcus Fraser (Aus), Andrew Dodt (Aus), Mark Foster (Eng), Joost Luiten (Ned), Marcus Both (Aus), Oliver Fisher (Eng).
70 Angelo Que (Phil), Mikko Ilonen (Fin), R. Nachimuthu (Mas), Chinnarat Phadungsil (Thai), Thongchai Jaidee (Thai), Emilliano Grillo (Arg), Wade Ormsby (Aus), Mardan Mamat (Sing), Tommy Fleetwood (Eng).
71 Gunn Charoenkul (Thai), Steve Webster (Eng), Stephen Gallacher(Scot), Danny Chia (Mas), Simon Khan (Eng), Thomas Aiken (SA), Lee In-woo (S. Kor), Mo Joong-kyung (S. Kor), Soren Kjeldsen (Den), Matthew Baldwin (Eng), Berry Henson (US), Jaakko Makitalo (Fin).
  72 Shiv Kapur (Ind), Julien Quesne (Fra), Digvijay Singh (Ind), Chan Yih-shin (Tai), Masanori Kobayashi (Jpn), Antonio Lascuna (Phil), Phillip Price (Wal).
  73 Zaw Moe (Myan), Thaworn Wiratchant (Thai), Thomas Levet (Fra), Michael Campbell (NZ).
  74 Luke Donald (Eng), Scott Hend (Aus), Anirban Lahiri (Ind), Arnond Vongvanij (Thai), Anthony Kang (US), Park Hyun-bin (S. Kor).
  75 Shaaban Hussin (Mas), Mithun Perera (Sri), Jason Knutzon (US), David Lipsky (US), Fabrizio Zanotti (Par), Ricardo Santos (Por).
  76 Kieran Pratt (Aus), James Morrison (Eng), Airil Zzhari (Mas).
  77 Solomon Emilio Rosidin (am, Mas), Mohamed Basharudin (Mas), Kemarol Baharin (Mas).
78 Akhmal Tarmizee (Mas), Juvic Pagunsan (Phil), Uhno Park (Aus).
79 M. Sasidaran (Mas), Hanafiah Jamil (Mas).
81 Rashid Ismail (Mas).
82 Low Khai Jei (am, Mas).

Malaysia Hockey League starts Friday..

PREMIER DIVISION: KL Hockey Club, Tenaga Nasional, Maybank, Sapura, UniKL, Nur Insafi, Terengganu.
  Division One: Tengku Mahkota Ismail Sports School, Bukit Jalil Sports School, UniTen KPT, UiTM, Sunday 2030, Ipoh City Council, TNB Thunderbolts.
   FRIDAY: Permier Division -- Tenaga v Terengganu (National Stadium II, 6pm), Nur Insafi v Sapura (USM, 6pm), KLHC v UniKL (National Stadium II, 8pm).
  Division One: SSTMI v Thunderbolts (Taman Daya, 6pm), Ipoh CC v UiTM (Azlan Shah, 6pm), Sunday 2030 v UniTen (National Stadium I, 6pm),  
   SATURDAY: Premier Division -- Maybank v Terengganu (National Stadium II, 6pm).
   SUNDAY: Premier Division -- Sapura v Maybank (National Stadium II, 6pm), NUr Insafi v UniKL (USM, 6pm), Tenaga v KLHC (National Stadium II, 8pm).
  Division One: Thunderbolts v UniTen (National Stadium I, 6pm),
UiTM v SSTMI (National Stadium I, 8pm), Ipoh CC v Sunday 2030 (Azlan Shah, 6pm).