Sungai Buloh: Singaporean Lam Zhiqun and Pavit Tangkamolprasert of Thailand shared the halfway lead after posting matching two-under-par 70s at the Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) CCM Rahman Putra Championship on Thursday.
The leading duo, who totalled six-under-par 138 each, battled under hazy conditions at the Kelab Rahman Putra Malaysia to hold a one-shot lead at the RM200,000 (approximately US$65,000) Asian Development Tour event.
Local hope Khor Kheng Hwai, Japan’s Konosuke Nakazato, Australian Daniel Bringolf and overnight leader, Paul Harris of the United States, stayed within touch in equal third on 139 total.
A host of nine players, including Annop Tangkamolprasert, younger brother of Pavit, ADT winner Mitsuhiko Hashizume of Japan and Malaysia’s Kenneth De Silva, settled for a share of seventh place at the second event of the 2014 ADT season.
Lam, who mixed his card with four birdies and two bogeys, enjoyed a successful amateur career when he emerged as the top amateur with a tied-eighth finish at the Asian Tour’s ISPS Handa Singapore Classic back in 2011.
“I played pretty consistently today. Managed to grind it out in the haze. I had a solid round yesterday though I didn’t finish well. I’m glad to be in the mix for the next two rounds,” said the 25-year-old, who opened his campaign with a 68.
“I’ve got country exemptions on the Asian Tour this year but I’ll try to play on the ADT whenever I can. I think it’s a good platform for me to practise and sharpen my skills,” added Lam, who was a junior international swimmer for Singapore before quitting and taking up golf at the age of 12.
Meanwhile Pavit stayed on course for a second win on the ADT after trading six birdies against four bogeys. He claimed his first victory at the 2013 season-ending event in Jakarta earlier in January.
“My tee shots were not very good today but I did well with my short game and putting. It was really tough having to play in the haze and the wind was picking up in the afternoon. I’m glad to put myself in a good position going into the last two rounds,” said Pavit.
“I’ll stick to the same game plan tomorrow and try to give myself more chances to score. Hopefully I can do better tomorrow,” added the 24-year-old.
The halfway cut was set at one-over-par with 53 players advancing into the final two rounds.
Leading second round scores:
138 – Lam Zhiqun (SIN) 68-70, Pavit Tangkamolprasert (THA) 68-70
139 – Khor Kheng Hwai (MAS) 69-70, Paul Harris (USA) 67-72, Konosuke Nakazato (JPN) 69-70, Daniel Bringolf (AUS) 68-71
140 – Yuzo Ichikawa (JPN) 70-70, Mohd Iylia Jamil 70-70, Mitsuhiko Hashizume (JPN) 68-72, Rizal Amin 71-69, Philip Matsson (THA) 71-69, Annop Tangkamolprasert (THA) 71-69, Kenneth De Silva 72-68, Malcolm Kokocinski (SWE) 71-69, Brett Munson (USA) 70-70
141 – Casey O’Toole (USA) 72-69, Ben Leong 70-71, R.J. Caracella (AUS) 72-69, Senroku Isa (JPN) 69-72