Siva fancies chance in Johor

Johor Bahru: Former Asian Development Tour (ADT) Order of Merit winner S. Sivachandhran (pic) will headline the RM180, 000 (appoximately US$60,000) Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) Johor Masters, which begins tomorrow.

A total of 121 players have gathered for the second ADT event of the season co-sanctioned with the PGM this year with Sivachandhran among a bevy of rising stars including Malaysia’s Kenneth De Silva, Michael Bibat of the Philippines, Thailand’s Rattanon Wannasrichan and Hirotaro Naito of Japan to gather at the Johor Country Club in the second event co-sanctioned by the ADT and PGM this year.

Sivachandhran, who gave the PGM Clearwater Classic a miss to play in the Asian Tour’s Panasonic India Open last week, has a knack of doing well on cowgrass layouts, having been victorious in the Negeri Sembilan Masters Invitational in 2010 and the PGM Melaka Classic last year at Ayer Keroh Country Club.

The 33-year-old currently lies eighth in the PGM Order of Merit, RM20967.90 behind current leader and defending champion Md Rashid Ismail, who will expect to do well in the state of his birth. Last year, Rashid ended a four-year barren run when he held to to wire-to-wire victory over Sukree Othman at the same venue.

The top three players at the end of the season will end playing rights on the 2013 Asian Tour season with Malaysia’s R. Nachimuthu, the winner at the Clearwater Classic last week, leading the way on US$3,348.84.

PGM Order of Merit (after Clearwater Classic)
1 Md Rashid Ismail (5) 41,333.67
2 R. Nachimuthu (5) 40,580.00
3 Shaifubari Muda (5) 36,280.80
4 Airil Rizman Zahari (5) 30,260.83
5 Sukree Othman (5) 25,456.60
6 Danny Chia (3) 23,175.00
7 S. Murthy (5) 22,548.26
8 S. Sivachandhran (4) 20,365.77
9 Wilson Choo(5) 17,941.30
10 Shaaban Hussin (3) 17,688.00