Saturday, November 21, 2009



Siem Reap , Cambodia: Craig Smith of Wales remained on track for his maiden Asian Tour win after maintaining his lead at the Johnnie Walker Cambodian Open today.
The towering Welshman fired a third round score of one-under-par 71 for a three-day total of 10-under-par 206 to lead by one-stroke going into the final round at the Phokeethra Country Club.
Thai youngster Annop Tangkamolprasert heads the chasing pack on 207 after a 70 while compatriot Sattaya Supupramai climbed up the leaderboard with a 68 to take third place on 209 at the US$300,000 full field Asian Tour event.
Malaysia ’s Shaaban Hussin and Pariya Junhasavasdikul of Thailand took a share of fourth on 210 while India ’s Shiv Kapur and Jbe Kruger of South Africa are among four golfers tied in sixth position on 211.
“I played very nicely and hit the ball very good on the front nine. I had a lot of chance from inside of six feet but couldn’t get anything going with the putter,” said Smith, who has only one prior top-10 in Asia .
Smith made the turn in 36 and was tied for the lead with Annop before he sank a birdie on the 16th hole which set the two players apart.
“I got a long way to go, I got a fantastic talent behind me but I am looking forward to the challenge. The key is to keep my head straight and not to get ahead of myself. I still have 18 difficult holes to play,” added the Welshman.
Annop, 19, continued his impressive run and was delighted to remain in contention. He started his round with an early blemish but was able to bounce back with birdies on six, nine and 13.
“I was quite nervous in the beginning but when I managed to calm myself down, I started to play superbly. My chipping and putting worked well for me and I am confident going into the final round. It will be a tough final day but I just need to stick to what I have been doing,” said Annop.
Shaaban closed with birdies on the 15th and 17th holes but rued one bogey and a double bogey on the eighth hole where he found water.
“My first nine holes were a problem for me but luckily I was able to recover on my second nine. I am not too far from the leader and I am confident of narrowing the lead,” said the Malaysian.
Kapur, who is fighting to save his Asian Tour card, was disappointed with his putting and will enter the final round five strokes off the pace.
“My putting is the story of the week. I just couldn’t get it going. You are never too far in this game. I am five shots off the lead and it has been done before. I just need to get off to a good start and get a 64 or a 65 to give myself a chance,” said Kapur.

Par 216 (3x72)
206 Craig Smith (WAL) 69-66-71
207 Annop Tangkamolprasert (THA) 68-69-70
209 Sattaya Supupramai (THA) 71-70-68
210 Shaaban Hussin (MAS) 71-67-72, Pariya Junhasavasdikul (THA) 68-70-72
211 Jbe Kruger (RSA) 72-70-69. Udorn Duangdecha (THA) 72-68-71, Varut Chomchalam (THA) 71-68-72, Shiv Kapur ( IND ) 70-67-74
212 Bryan Saltus ( USA ) 73-70-69, Chawalit Plaphol (THA) 71-71-70, Atthaphon Prathummanee (THA) 68-73-71, Marcus Both (AUS) 70-69-73
213 Jeff Burns (USA) 70-74-69, Nakul Vichitryuthasastr (THA) 75-67-71, Somchai Pongpaew (THA) 71-67-75, Artemio Murakami (PHI) 68-69-76, Will Yanagisawa (USA) 71-67-75
214 Kim Young-Jin (KOR) 72-74-68, Siddikur (BAN) 73-73-68
Selected scores:
217 Rhys Davies (Wales) 74 71 72, Ross Bain (Scotland) 72 72 73 (jt 42nd).
218 Chris Roake (England) 69 73 76 (jt 51st).



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