Malaysia's Arie Fauzi carded an even-par 72 in the final round for a two-under 283 total to finish joint 46th in the Asian Tour Qualifying School Final Stage in Thailand on Saturday. - Filepic
PETALING JAYA: Malaysian Arie Fauzi’s hopes of earning an Asian Tour card for this year vanished into thin air after he could only finish in joint 46th spot with seven others in the Asian Tour Qualifying School Final Stage at the Springfield Royal Country Club in Cha-am, Hua Hin, Thailand.
Arie carded an even-par 72 in the final round on Saturday for a two-under 283 total.
Japan’s Akinori Tani, a two-time winner in Japan, shot a one-under 70 to win the Final Stage after Singapore’s Lam Chih Bing “surrendered” in the playoff.
Knowing that he had done enough to earn a Tour card, Chih Bing, who posted the day’s lowest score of 64, decided to forfeit the playoff – without hitting a single shot – as he rushed home to celebrate the birthday of his daughter, who turns two on Sunday.
Filipino veteran Cassius Casas, Hamza Amin of Pakistan, Lionel Weber of France, Nicholas Cullen of Australia, Poom Saksansin of Thailand and Wolmer Murillo of Venezuela were among the 40 players who also earned their Tour cards for 2014.
Tani was delighted with his brave effort this week, which earned him a swift return to the Asian Tour.
“It has been a great week. I didn’t play well on the first day, so I decided to make some changes to my swing. I played well the last two rounds and I’m very happy that I can return to play on the Asian Tour once again. I’m looking forward to the first event in India,” said Tani, who compiled a four-day total of 11-under 274 which was matched by Chih Bing.
Chih Bing, who has won once on the Asian Tour, made up for the disappointment of finishing 65th on the 2013 Order of Merit with a scintillating bogey-free round highlighted by one eagle and five birdies.
“The goal was to finish inside the top-40 and once I knew that I had made it, I had to rush off to catch my flight home so that I can spend time with my family, especially my daughter whose birthday is on Sunday. It really means a lot to me that I have earned a Tour card again,” said Chih Bing.