Local hopefuls struggle in high winds

Daeng Abdul Rahman Abd Aziz ©Mike Casper|TCH - filepic

Incheon [KOREA]: The domestic campaign at the eighth staging of the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship was literally blown off course  at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club on Saturday.

Unpredictable, gusty winds once again slammed the door shut on any hopes of a moving day charge by the trio of Malaysians left in the field.

A poor start once again proved the undoing for Daeng Abdul Rahman Abdul Aziz, who dropped three bogeys in as many opening holes,  en-route to a 77.

The Malaysian Games (SUKMA) champion finds himself on 10-over 226, alongside compatriot Danial Durisic, who returned with a disappointing 78 – no thanks to two double bogeys on 15th and ninth.

But no one was more disappointed than senior national Chan Tuck Soon, who dropped an uncharacteristic six shots on the tenth hole for a dismal 85, leaving him at the wrong end of the leaderboard on 18-over 234.

Meanwhile, debutant Brett Coletta will take a two-shot lead over fellow Australian and last year’s joint runner-up Cameron Davis into tomorrow’s final round following  a third round 68, with a start at the 2017 Masters Tournament awaiting the champion.

Leading third round scores (Par-72) >
202 – Brett Coletta (AUS) 67-67-68
204 – Cameron Davis (AUS) 65-70-69
208 – Junya Kameshiro (JPN) 68-69-71
209 – Curtis Luck (AUS) 70-69-70
210 – Takumi Kanaya (JPN) 70-70-70
212 – Kazuki Higa (JPN) 75-70-67, KK Limbhasut (THA) 68-71-73
213 – Lue Toomey (NZL) 71-72-70
214 – Nick Voke (NZL) 71-72-71
215 – Yu Chun-An (TPE) 71-71-73, Lee Won Jun (KOR) 73-69-73, Yuwa Kosaihira (JPN) 67-72-76

—– Malaysians as they fared —–
226 – Danial Durisic 74-74-78, Daeng Abdul Rahman Abdul Aziz 74-75-77
234 – Chan Tuck Soon 72-77-85

Daeng, who has struggled all week with a cold, hopes to overcome the early jitters that has left him with an awkward task of salvaging his rounds.

“I need to have better start tomorrow. All week, I’ve conceded early mistakes which left with a deficit to overcome. My driver has been behaving but I have struggled with my iron shots in these windy conditions. I keep leaving myself with long putts to convert, which is a tough ask on these slippery greens,” noted the national amateur.

Danial on the other hand, believes he needs to find a way to close out his round on a stronger footing.

“I really misjudged the swirling conditions, leaving too many of my approaches short as least by a club length and that really costed me the round.

“I’d like to finish strongly tomorrow because I’ve struggled with the ninth hole all week.It’s been my bogey hole and I need to approach it a bit differently tomorrow because over last two days, the bogeys there have really let me down,” added the 19-year-old freshman at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.