Wednesday, February 20, 2013


Kedah, Malaysia: Malaysia’s Shaifubari Muda and Lindsay Renolds of Canada set the early pace by posting matching seven-under-par 65s to take the first round lead at the PGM Sime Darby Harvard Masters today.
James Bowen of the United States carded a 66 to take third place while compatriot Spencer Shishido was a further shot back in fourth place after signing for a 67 at the RM200,000 (approximately US$65,000) Asian Development Tour (ADT) event.
Chinese Tapei’s Hsieh Chi-hsien set himself well for his second ADT win when he returned with a 68 to stay three shots back of the leaders in tied-fifth place alongside Australia’s Anthony Choat, England’s Grant Jackson, Thailand’s Pavit Tangkamolprasert, Philippines’ Carl Santos-Ocampo and local hopes Akhmal Tarmizee and Khor Kheng Hwai at the Harvard Golf and Country Club.
Shaifubari was clearly delighted with his flawless round which was highlighted by seven birdies on holes three, six, nine, 10, 12, 13 and 18.
While he has set his sights on winning his first ADT title this week, Shaifubari is also hoping that he can eventually ply his trade on the main Tour.
“65 is good score. Although I’ve shot a 64 on this course before, I’ll take a 65 anytime. Everyone thinks of winning whenever we’re in contention and I’m no different. But the most important is still to remain focus as it’s still early days,” said Shaifubari.
“The Asian Tour is where I want to play eventually and hopefully my performances throughout the season can get me there,” added the Malaysian.
The top three players at the end of the ADT season will earn their Asian Tour cards for 2014.
Renolds credited his driver for playing a pivotal role in securing pole position after day one.
The Canadian reached the turn in 31 after marking his card with five birdies on holes three, four, six, eight and nine.
He then added further birdies on holes 13 and 18 to sign for a sparkling round of 65.
“I birdied all the par-fives today, which I’m obviously very delighted with. The course conditions were excellent. My driver was perfect and I played every shot as it was. Hopefully, this will continue through to Saturday,” said the 26-year-old Canadian.
Shishido, meanwhile is in buoyant mood as he welcomes the opportunity of earning world ranking points and taking his career to the next level at this week’s PGM Sime Darby Harvard Masters.
“World ranking points for ADT events are really an added incentive as that’s something that all professionals like myself work hard for. We always want to move up the rankings and ADT events offer us the opportunity to do so,” said Shishido.
Australia’s Mark Varela had the honours of carding the event’s first hole-in-one after he sank his ace on the 159-metres par-three second with a seven-iron.
The PGM Sime Darby Harvard Masters is the second event on the ADT to receive world ranking points in the new 2013 season.
Starting in 2013, all events on the burgeoning ADT, which is the secondary circuit of the Asian Tour will receive Official World Golf Ranking points.
These points will be used to determine the field when golf makes a return to the Olympics in Rio De Janeiro in 2016.
All winners on the ADT will receive a minimum of six world ranking points while the top-six players and ties will earn points based on a sliding scale.
Leading first round scores
65 Lindsay RENOLDS (CAN), Shaifubari MUDA (MAS)
66 James BOWEN (USA)
67 Spencer SHISHIDO (USA)
69 Mhark FERNANDO (PHI), Hafiy SUHAILI (MAS), James LAM (PHI), Masaru TAKAHASHI (JPN), Daniel NG (MAS), S. Siva Chandhran (MAS),  Gavin FLINT (AUS), Ratchapol JANTAVAR (THA)



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