Nilai, Oct 18: The Alphard Cup at Kota Seriemas Golf & Country Club promises a nail-biting finish as seasoned professional Khor Kheng Hwai takes the lead by just one stroke in the final round. Khor, who last tasted victory in 2017, is looking to end his winless streak in the tournament.
The 39-year-old Penang native entered the final round just one stroke behind the overnight leader, Ervin Chang, but Khor’s impressive performance, carding a second four-under 68, gave him a two-day aggregate of 136, securing his position at the top of the leaderboard, one stroke ahead of Ervin. Sharing the joint third place are Kenneth Tobuse and Syahiran Syakir, who both carded the day’s lowest score of 66.
“It’s been a while since I last won,” Khor admitted. “I’m quite happy with my all-round game and gave myself a few birdie opportunities. I actually missed more greens today than yesterday but made the putts when I needed them most. Greens are quite pure.”
The Kota Seriemas course posed a stiff challenge, but Syahiran Syakir shone by recording the lowest score of the tournament, with seven birdies on his card. However, his performance was marred by a lone bogey on the par-four 5th hole.
Syahiran, a 23-year-old from Kedah who turned pro two years ago, expressed his surprise at his current position, saying, “I didn’t expect to be in this position, especially after the mediocre round yesterday. It was a tough decision, but I’ve been invited to the All-Thailand Tour’s qualifying school in November, which could open up more opportunities for me. It’s a long-term plan.”
Kenneth Tobuse, another contender yet to secure his first tournament win, shared his excitement about being in this position.
He praised the course conditions, ranking the greens at Kota Seriemas and Saujana as the best on tour.
Ervin Chang had an up-and-down first nine, carding a one-over 37 with two birdies and three bogeys.
He later regrouped on the back nine, securing two birdies and an eagle, but a bogey set him back.
Ervin will join Syahiran and Khor in the final group teeing off at 8:50 AM.
Leading the pack going into the final day are Tobuse, Paul San, and Daeng Abdul Rahman, the champion at Forest City two weeks ago.
A total of 16 players managed to break par, with the cut-off set at seven-over 151.
In the Ladies Championship, Genevieve Ling took the lead with an even-par 72, resulting in a two-over total of 146.
She holds a one-stroke advantage over Aretha Pan and Geraldine Wong.
Geraldine Wong, who led after the first day, struggled on the second day, failing to record a single birdie and carding five-over 77.
The 54-hole competition will conclude tomorrow afternoon.
The Kota Seriemas Golf & Country Club is part of the 2,400-acre Seriemas township developed by Seriemas Development Sendirian Berhad, a subsidiary of PNB Development Sdn Bhd.
Leading Scores (Men):
- 136 Khor Kheng Hwai (68-68)
- 137 Ervin Chang
- 138 Syahiran Syakir (66-72), Kenneth Tobuse (69-69)
- 139 Paul San (71-68), Daeng Abdul Rahman (69-70), Galven Green (68-71)
- 141 Wafiyuddin Manaf (72-69), Edven Ying (71-70), Shaifubari Muda (69-72), Lim Leun Kwang (70-71)
Leading Scores (Ladies):
- 146 Genevieve Ling (74-72)
- 147 Aretha Pan (73-74), Geraldine Wong (70-77)
- 150 Jocelyn Chee (75-75)
- 152 Lana Aswadi (75-77)
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