|Kelab Rahman Putra Malaysia in Sungai Buloh, Selangor-location|
|Kelab Rahman Putra Malaysia in Sungai Buloh, Selangor|
Wafiyuddin joint leader at Rahman Putra
Malaysia’s Mohammad Wafiyuddin played the best round of his fledgling pro career when he shot an eight-under 64 to share the opening round lead with Thailand’s Panuwat Muenlek and Korean Youngjea Byun in the Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) Tour’s Panasonic Malaysia Championship today.
The 26-year-old had an eagle and seven birdies on his card, with the bogey at the par-3 2nd hole the only blemish in an outstanding performance in the co-sanctioned RM250,000 tournament at Kelab Rahman Putra Malaysia in Sungai Buloh, Selangor .
And to cap off a display of real good golf, Wafiyuddin closed out his round with three straight birdies and set himself a new personal best for 18 holes, for both the PGM Tour and Asian Development Tour, the two organisations that run the event.
“I hit the ball solid,” he said. “I got off to a great start and maintained the momentum after that. I hit a number of shots close-in to the pin and left myself with good chances for birdie.
“I also had the 20-footer eagle putt on the 10th, which was my first hole, after I put it on (the green) in two.
“I would say that my iron-play was the key to the round. I felt confident with the club in my hand and I will try to do the same tomorrow,” he added.
Byun also had an eagle, seven birdies and a bogey on his card, while Panuwat was bogey-free today.
American Lexus Keoninh trailed the leaders by one shot in fourth place, but made his presence felt with a birdie-birdie-eagle.
Pleased with his showing Keoninh said afterwards: “I was aiming for a good start and I got one. After that I just kept trying to hit good shots and it worked out fine.
“I remained positive throughout the round and gave myself a lot of chances. This is the best day I have shot on the Tour since I started playing here last year.
“I also had a good finish when I hit a hybrid off the tee on 18 and then a three-wood from about 270 yards before sinking the 5-footer for eagle,” added the 25-year-old.
There was five-way tie for fifth place where all of American Brett Munson, Malaysian Sukree Othman, South African Mathiam Keyser and Thailand’s Pijit Petchkasem and Nitithorn Tippong (fired opening rounds of 67.
Leading first round scores
64 Mohammad Wafiyuddin (Mas), Youngjea Byun (Kor), Panuwat Muenlaek (Tha)
65 Lexus Keoninh (US);
67 Sukree Othman (Mas), Mathiam Keyser (SA), Pijit Petchkasem (Tha), Brett Munson (US), Nitithorn Tippong (Tha),
68 Low Khai Jei (Mas), Janne Kaske (Fin), John Michael O'Toole (US), Suradit Yongcharoenchai (Tha), James Bowen (US), Jakraphan Premsirigorn (Tha), Surachut Hansapiban (Tha), Kento Nakai (Jpn)