Dominant Shahriffuddin throws down the gauntlet

SHAHRIFFUDDIN Ariffin has thrown down the gauntlet for the rest of the Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) Tour with his third straight title on Thursday.

With victories in the PGM Maybank Championship in March and the KIA Championship last month, Shahriffuddin captured the PGM Port Dickson title by two strokes with a 12-under 204 total from Sukree Othman in the RM120,000 tournament.

This left PGM Tour general manager Nik Mustapha Nik Mohamed to observe: “Shahriffuddin has really laid down the challenge for the rest of the Tour. He has been superb all season and to win three in a row is not easy, because of all the talent out there.

“And what a lot people don’t remember is that in the first tournament of the year, the Tun Sarji Trophy, Shahriffuddin finished third.

“So when you really look at it, in his four starts this season, he has been in the top-three in all and three of those are wins.

“By any account that kind of form is special. It has been a special start to the new season for him, and now the others have to pick up the challenge and try to catch him,” said Nik Mustapha.

The top-two were the only players in the full-field in Port Dickson who managed all three rounds in the 60s, and Shahriffuddin took home the RM21,000 first prize, while Sukree collected RMRM13,800.

Beaming with delight, Shahriffuddin said: “It was not easy because there were a lot of good and experienced players in the field. But I held my nerve and concentrated on what I needed to do, especially over the back nine (in the last round).

“I bogeyed #15 and 17, but managed a birdie at the last, and that made the finish nice,” he added. “Overall, I think played well and hit the ball good.”

Sukree who has had finishes of 11th, 13th and sixth place in the first three PGM Tour events this season, said he was pleased with how things panned out.

“I’m pleased where I finished,” he said. “But if a few more putts dropped it might have even been better. I felt comfortable and I struck the ball solid.

“What I need to do now is, put in more practice and see what happens when we go for the Pahang Championship at Royal Pekan Golf Club next month.”

Kim Leun Kwang posted the low round of the tournament, an eight-under 64 on the second day, en route to a tie for third place, alongside Amir Nazrin. They both finished on eight-under 208 and went home with RM7,560 each.

Nazrin closed out the 54-hole tournament with a one-under 71, but not before he lit up the course with a six-under 66 to lead after the first day. He also had a 71 in the second round.

M. Sasidaran finished in solo fifth on six-under 210, while Marcus Lim, a gold medallist at the South-East Asian (SEA) Games in Vietnam last month, was the top amateur in Port Dickson.

He was tied for sixth with veteran campaigner R. Nachimuthu. They had matching five-under 211 totals.

Ervin Chang , who won two gold medals at the SEA Games in Vietnam and turned professional after the KIA Championship at Glenmarie, put on a decent showing in his first PGM Tour event as a professional.

And he was in some distinguished company when he tied for eighth place, matching Danny Chia, Kemarol Baharin and Muhazim Bakhtiar on three-under 213. For his efforts, Chang was rewarded with a RM3,015 cheque.

Article type: free
User access status:
Subscribe now to our Premium Plan for an ad-free and unlimited reading experience!

Next In Golf

Alyaa, Andrea blown off course in Jakarta
Golf-McIlroy hails influence of 'hero' Woods after PGA Tour players meeting
Natasha out to seize the day in only her second professional start
Rickie Fowler joins Tiger Woods for player meeting regarding LIV
Chance for Alyaa and Natasha to gauge standard against illustrious field
Golf-British Open champion Smith to miss BMW Championship with hip injury
Golf-French activists fill holes with cement in protest at watering exemptions
He’s no Greenhorn
‘Twas a great European Swing
Confidently hit those fairway bunker shots

Others Also Read