Golf

Published: Tuesday December 17, 2013 MYT 8:07:00 PM
Updated: Tuesday December 17, 2013 MYT 8:14:04 PM

Gavin heads into final round in joint second

Gavin Kyle Green of Malaysia stayed on course to win the SEA Games individual golf title with one round to go. He lies joint second on six-under 210 on Wednesday. - Filepic

Gavin Kyle Green of Malaysia stayed on course to win the SEA Games individual golf title with one round to go. He lies joint second on six-under 210 on Wednesday. - Filepic

NAYPYITAW: Golfer Gavin Kyle Green has the Thai brigade breathing down his neck as he stays in the hunt to hand himself an early birthday present.

United States-based Gavin, who turns 20 on Dec 28, put up a three-under 69 for a share of second spot after the third round of play at the Royal Myanmar Golf Course on Wednesday and will start the final round on a total of six-under 210.

Overnight leader Danthai Boonma put up yet another steady round of four-under 68 to move four strokes ahead of the chasing pack on 10-under 206, which includes Gavin and his own teammates Nattawat Suwajanakorn (67) and Poom Saksansin (69).

Gavin, who is studying at the University of New Mexico, started well when he made three birdies in the first four holes before dropping one shot to turn in at 34.

Gavin had two more birdies against one bogey to stay on the leaderboard and needs to produce a strong final round on Thursday if he is to become the first ever Malaysian to win the SEA Games men’s individual gold in golf.

Malaysia have only won SEA Games gold twice in the men’s team competition since the sport’s debut in 1987 in Jakarta - in 1989 and 2001.

A four-stroke deficit is not impossible to overcome in golf where things can quickly change and team manager Low Teck San believes what is more important is Gavin’s mindset.

”Gavin must stay relaxed and we hope he can turn things around.

”He will be playing the final round tomorrow alongside the leader from Thailand. To bring home the gold is still our target,” said Teck San, who is also the Malaysian Golf Association vice-president.

Malaysia are in contention for a medal in the men’s team competition as well with Abel Tam and Mohd Wafiyuddin Abdul Manaf going under-par on Wednesday.

Abel was on fire with a fine seven-under 65 while Wafiyuddin put up a two-under 70 to help Malaysia move to bronze medal position on their total of 637, five strokes behind Myanmar.

”Thailand are 15 strokes ahead of us at the moment and it is hard to catch them.

”But the silver is within reach if our golfers play well tomorrow and Myanmar slips,” he added.

Michelle Koh’s hopes of challenging for the women’s individual gold faded after she slipped to joint third after a three-over 75.

Princess Mary Superral of the Philippines pulled away at the top after a superb six-under 66 to lead the field by six strokes.

Tags / Keywords: SEA Games, Naypyitaw, Myanmar, golf, Gavin Kyle Green

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