Shiga (Japan): Jeev Milkha Singh and Shiv Kapur, who had a good top-10 finish at last week`s Macau Open, will lead a strong Indian challenge at the Asia Pacific Panasonic Open at Biwako Country Club here from Thursday.
Apart from Jeev and Kapur, the current leader on the Asian Tour Order of Merit SSP Chowrasia, the former Asian tour No. 1 Jyoti Randhawa, Anirban Lahiri, Manav Jaini and Sujjan Singh are among the other Indians in the field for the event, that carries a purse of 150,000,000 yen (approximately USD 1.7 million).
While, Jeev, Kapur, Randhawa, Chowrasia and Lahiri have won on Asian Tour, Jaini and Sujjan have come close in top-5 but are still awaiting their maiden victories each.
Jaini has had three top-10s in last three Asian Tour events in India, while Sujjan was in top-10 at joint-sanctioned Avantha Masters.
Kapur`s tied 10th finish saw him move up to fifth on Asian Tour Order of Merit, while Jeev Milkha Singh, notching season-best fourth in Macau, is now 14th and Sujjan Singh is 12th.
The top-10 finish here will get the golfers spots in the special sanctioned USD 6 million CIMB Classic Malaysia in October.
Meanwhile, Chinese Taipei`s Chan Yih-shin, who had a brilliant win at Macau, is hoping his winning run will continue when he tees off here on Thursday.
Fresh from winning his second Asian Tour title in Macau last week, Chan is relieved that his winner`s exemption has been extended by another two years and he can focus on winning more titles now.
The 34-year-old Chan`s win in Macau saw him make one of the biggest moves from 64th position to sixth place on the Asian Tour Order of Merit.
Australia`s David Gleeson also made a huge leap up the rankings following his runner-up finish. The two-time Asian Tour winner is in 16th place with USD 81,915.
Despite missing his first cut of the season in Macau last week, Bangladesh`s Siddikur is determined to be back on top.
Siddikur, who made history by becoming the first Bangladeshi to win on the Asian Tour, has been a figure of consistency all season and sees his performance in Macau as a slight blip in form.
The 26-year-old has enjoyed four top-10s this season and he knows that a good result at the Asia Pacific Panasonic Open could see him overtake current leader Chowrasia.
Myanmar`s Zaw Moe, who collected one of his biggest cheques this season of USD 31,050 by virtue of his tied-fourth finish, moved to 49th place while Thailand`s Thaworn Wiratchant rose to 11th place on USD 113,591.
The top-60 players at the end of the season will keep their full playing rights for 2012.