KUALA LUMPUR: Thailand’s Jazz Janewattananond will be banking on his early form to make his exceptional season even better at the US$3 million Maybank Championship, which tees off at the Saujana Golf and Country Club from March 21 to 24.
Jazz, who currently leads the Asian Tour Order of Merit, started his season in brilliant fashion by defeating an elite field at the Asian Tour’s season-opener in Singapore in January.
That victory also saw him break into the top-100 of the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) for the first time in his career.
The Thai has never finished outside the top-10 since he lifted his third Asian Tour title in Singapore and is determined to keep that momentum going at the Maybank Championship, which is co-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and European Tour.
Like in Singapore, Jazz will also be up against a stellar field that includes England’s Lee Westwood, four-time Major Champion Ernie Els of South Africa and 2020 European Ryder Cup Captain Padraig Harrington.
The 23-year-old is however unfazed by their star power and believes he can be equal to the task again.
“The Maybank Championship is the biggest tournament on the Asian Tour and it is an important event for everyone. I am just going to go there and play my best, and try my best to win it.
“The goal for me this year is to become a multiple winner on Tour. It was my goal even before I won in Singapore. Now that I have won once, I just need one more win. Hopefully it’s Maybank,” said Jazz.
Defending champion Shubhankar Sharma of India has also confirmed his entry for Malaysia’s premier golf tournament together with home favourite Gavin Green, who was Asia’s number one in 2017.
Other notable players expected to contend for the Maybank Championship include Thailand’s Poom Saksansin, a proven three-time Asian Tour winner, Australia’s Zach Murray, who is the third fastest Qualifying School graduate to win on the Asian Tour after his victory in New Zealand last week and American John Catlin, who became the 10th golfer in the Asian Tour’s history to win three times in a single season last year.