Bangkok: David Lipsky was crowned the 2014 Asian Tour Order of Merit champion on Sunday despite a plucky showing by closest rival Anirban Lahiri at the Thailand Golf Championship.
The Korean-American was forced into an anxious clubhouse wait after a ponderous three-over final-round 75 left him tied 38th for the tournament, with Lahiri still playing for a top spot in the $1 million event.
The talented Indian needed a top-four placing in Thailand to take the Order of Merit race to next week`s Dubai Open, but fell agonisingly short, tying for sixth with a one over 73.
It gave the 26-year-old Lipsky an unassailable $713,901 purse for the year with Lahiri currently sitting in second on $602,833, followed by Thailand`s Prom Meesawat with $527,921.
"This win means a lot to me and I`m feeling a lot of pride. This is something which I aspired to do... now I know that if I play well, I can compete against the best," a jubilant Lipsky told reporters.
"It has been an up and down year for me and this week is a perfect example. I thought I was playing well but ended up in 38th place.
"Overall the year has been good and reflecting back on it, I couldn`t have been more proud of what I`ve accomplished," said Lipsky, who played 13 tournaments on the tour this year.
After congratulating his rival, Lahiri vowed to come back stronger.
"I`ll be back and winning the Order of Merit is definitely one of those things I want to do in my career," he said.
"Lipsky and I both fought and battled it out really hard."