Chapchai Nirat wins Malaysia playoff to end five-year drought
Chapchai Nirat ended his five-year title drought when he held his nerve to roll in a putt at the first playoff hole and beat Filipino veteran Antonio Lascuna to win Asian Tour`s Selangor Masters on Sunday.
Kuala Lumpur: Chapchai Nirat ended his five-year title drought when he held his nerve to roll in a putt at the first playoff hole and beat Filipino veteran Antonio Lascuna to win Asian Tour`s Selangor Masters on Sunday.
The big-hitting Thai carded a closing three-under 68 for a four-day total of 10-under 274, which was matched by the 43-year-old Lascuna who fired a 63, studded with six birdies and an eagle.
But Lascuna missed his par putt on the first extra hole while Chapchai made no error with his four-foot putt to win the $410,000 event held on the outskirts of the Malaysian capital.
"I didn`t think this day would happen," said Chapchai, who was drenched with water by fellow Thai players who had gathered around the 18th green.
"I didn`t think I`d have a chance to win (after five years). Golf is a game where you need to stay patient. I always talked to my caddie that if I could keep my form, I felt I could get one win again."
India`s Anirban Lahiri finished third, two behind at eight-under 276, while Order of Merit leader American David Lipsky and overnight leader Cameron Smith of Australia were among the five who shared the fourth spot further two shots behind.
Chapchai, who won his fourth Asian Tour title, seemed to be cruising to victory at one point until he bogeyed the two final holes.
"I felt a lot of pressure. When I saw Antonio miss the putt (in the play-off), I knew I had a chance. It took the pressure off me a bit and I`m delighted to hole the putt," he said.
"This win is different from the previous three as it`s my first time in a play-off. The emotion is different. I’m glad I managed to pull through."
Lascuna, who finished third in Taiwan last weekend, was happy with his form and said he will continue to fight for his maiden title.
"I hit a good putt but the ball turned left at the end. I saw it as a straight putt but it turned. I`m still happy especially with a closing 63 which is my lowest on the Asian Tour," he said.
"Last week, I also came close. I`m playing really good. The feeling was exciting. I was trying to win. I`ll keep practising more, I won`t give up."