Sukree, Durriyah off to flying starts

Sukree Othman ©Arep Kulal|PGM Tour

Kangar [PERLIS]: New Year resolutions are often hard to keep but Sukree Othman enjoyed a great headstart by capturing the season-opening Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) Perlis Championship on Saturday.

The seasoned campaigner secured his seventh PGM Tour title, firing a brilliant closing effort of five-under-par 67 to leave the field trailling six shots in his wake.

A six-under 282 overall saw the Perak-born star underline his magic touch around the notoriously tight Putra Golf Club tract in Kangar – adding to his wins in 2013 and 2016.

Jeremiah Kim Leunkwang took second place on even-par 288 while third round leader Daeng Abdul Rahman and Arie Irawan were a shot adrift in joint third.

Fifth place was shared by 2017 winner Sasidaran Muthiah and Hans Jamil, who signed for matching 71s to finish on two-over 290.

Leading Final Results [Par-72]
282 – Sukree Othman 71-71-73-67
288 – Jeremiah Kim Leunkwang 71-71-74-72
289 – Arie Irawan 72-74-74-69, Daeng Abdul Rahman Abdul Aziz 71-70-72-76
290 – Sasidaran Muthiah 71-72-76-71, Hans Jamil -75-69-75-71
291 – Airil Rizman Zahari 74-77-72-68, Zen Dharmaratne 71-73-74-73, Akhmal Tarmizee Nazari 73-72-73-73, Kemarol Baharin 75-72-71-73
292 – Iylia Jamil 75-72-73-72, Syakir Adli 71-71-77-73, Mohd Azman Basharudin 77-69-69-77

288 – Nur Durriyah Damian 74-74-72-68
291 – Ainil Johani Bakar 76-74-71-70
294 – Dianne Luke 78-73-71-72
297 – Michelle Koh 73-72-79-73

Sukree Othman ©Arep Kulal|PGM Tour

Delighted with his fantastic start to the new season, Sukree said: “Nothing better than winning your first event of the year. It feels good to return to winning ways again, and even more so at this course where I’ve always enjoyed a good run.

“There is something about Putra Golf Club that really suits my game and I always feel comfortable going around here,” he added.

Sukree, who trailled by two strokes coming into the final round, made his intentions known early on with birdies on the first two holes and was three-under after four.

Another two birdies at the 13 and 17 ensured a deserved triumph for the 39-year-old, who picked up the winner’s share of RM34,000.

“I’ve struggled over the past year. I tried to change a few things to get it right but nothing really worked. And after some hard work in the off-season, the short game feel seems to have come back and I’m hoping it stays like this for a while.”

Nur Durriyah Damian ©Arep Kulal|PGM Tour

Playing in just her third professional tournament, Nur Durriyah Damian picked up her maiden title by winning the ladies contest.

An even-par 288 effort on the back of rounds of 74, 74, 72 and 68 left the 23-year-old former national stalwart was full of smiles as she edged 2017 Order of Merit champion Ainil Johani Abu Bakar by three shots.

“I am very, very happy. I found it tough over the first two days as i had trouble reading the greens and didn’t hit the ball very well. But I played well today and that’s what got me through. I’m looking for to my first full year on Tour and will work hard to improve my game and get better, and hopefully do well,” said Durriyah.