Kajang [SELANGOR]: Ben Leong overcame Nicholas Fung in an all-Sabahan play-off to emerge victorious at the Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) Impian Championship on July 5.
The 33-year-old won with a par on the first extra hole after both players had finished tied on 15-under-par at Impian Golf & Country Club.
Leong entered the final round staked to a three-shot lead, but the advantage quickly displayed as he only had a solitary bogey to show in his opening.
In contrast, Fung, enjoyed a hot start, storming to the turn in 33 to turn the tables on his playing partner and take a single-shot lead into the back nine.
But the former displayed impressive mettle with a flawless back nine, highlighted by birdies on 13th and 17th for a 71 to force Fung, who had finished with a 68, into a shootout.
After Fung was forced to take an unplayable when he pulled his tee-shot, Leong stepped up to the plate, reaching the green in regulation with a comfortable two putts for his 11th Tour title.
“It’s been a long wait – I think my last win was almost a year ago in Sabah, so it’s timely.
“Tough as it can be with two accomplished champions in my flight, but I just kept to the process and got the job done. Play-offs are always fifty-fifty, but I played [the hole] like I had all week,” shared Leong.
Danny Chia finished in sole third on ten-under on the back of a closing 73 with Akhmal Tarmizee Nazari and Jeremiah Kim a further shot back in joint fourth.
The women’s division saw Michelle Koh complete a come-from-behind victory for her first win of the season.
A closing two-under 70 saw the Pahangite finish on even-par, six strokes clear of Ainil Johani Abu Bakar (71) and overnight leader Dianne Luke, who stumbled to a 78.
The women’s division has been impressively diverse this year, seeing six different winners in seven tournaments.
LEADING FINAL RESULTS (PAR-72)
273 – Nicholas Fung 69-65-71-68, Ben Leong 68-69-65-71
Leong wins on the first play-off hole
278 – Danny Chia 67-70-68-73
279 – Akhmal Tarmizee Nazari 69-70-69-71, Jeremiah Kim Leun-kwang 69-68-70-72
281 – Kenneth De Silva 72-71-69-69
282 – Iylia Jamil 72-72-70-68, Sivachandhran Supramaniam 72-70-72-68, Shahriffudin Ariffin 67-73-69-73
284 – Kemarol Baharin 74-69-73-68, Lam Yu Shuen 74-71-67-72
288 – Michelle Koh 72-73-73-70
294 – Ainil Johani Bakar 67-76-80-71, Dianne Luke 72-68-76-78
298 – Genevieve Ling 74-75-77-72
307 – Nur Durriyah Damian 74-76-80-77 310 – Norshahira Che Omar 76 -75-81-78