Saturday, November 16, 2013


Manila, November 16: China’s Liang Wen-chong broke clear of the chasing pack when he posted a third round five-under-par 67 to take a one-shot lead into Sunday's final round at the inaugural US$750,000 Resorts World Manila Masters on 
With a host of players battling for the outright lead at the Manila Southwoods Golf and Country Club, it finally took a birdie on the 17th hole to give China’s number one golfer pole position before he went on to sign for a three-day total of 13-under-par 203.
Malaysia’s Nicholas Fung returned with a 70 to share second place with Korean-American David Lipsky on 204 while India’s Himmat Rai carded a 68 to take tied-fourth place alongside overnight leader Jazz Janewattananond at the newest event to make its debut on the Asian Tour this season.
Liang started his round three shots back of the overnight leaders but quickly reduced his deficit with birdies in his opening two holes.
The Chinese dropped his only shot of the day at the par-three fifth but recovered well with another birdie on the ninth to turn in 34.
Liang then birdied three of his last five holes to remain firmly in contention for his third Asian Tour win.
“It was another great round and I’m happy that I managed to stay patient throughout the day,” said Liang.
With several impressive performances this year including three top-five finishes in India, Russia and Austria, Liang is however not ready to think of another victory on the region’s premier Tour just yet.
“If you look at the leaderboard, the race is still wide open. Anything can happen and I just have to concentrate and hope things go my way tomorrow,” said Liang, who holds the honour of being the first, and so far only, Chinese golfer to have broken into the top-100 on the OWGR with his career high of 57th place in 2010.
Lipsky also believes the contest is far from over as he goes in search of his second Asian Tour win this week.
“The course is playing really tough today. The wind was picking up and the greens are really firm. I’m happy with my round today and I am looking forward to the final round tomorrow,” said Lipsky.
Prior to his arrival in Manila, Lipsky had only made the cut thrice in eight starts this season. The 25-year-old is however enjoying a welcome return to form and is determined to end the week with a flourish.
“My first Asian Tour win in Cambodia meant a lot to me. I struggled a little bit with my swing earlier this year but it’s getting back on track now. It’s just great to be back in contention. If I can win, it would be even better so we will see how it goes tomorrow,” said Lipsky.
Meanwhile Fung, who currently leads the rankings on the Asian Development Tour (ADT), which is the Tour’s secondary circuit, is excited with the prospect of lifting his maiden title on the main Tour.
“Tomorrow will be the first time I’ll be playing in the final group and I’m going to try my best to win this tournament,” said Fung.
With the windy conditions affecting his play, the Malaysian is hoping for better weather conditions as he eyes a grandstand finish.
“The conditions were really tough today and I struggled. But luckily, I’m only one shot back of Liang and I’ll try my best to overtake him,” said Fung.
Par 216 (3x72) Yardage: 7,337
203 - LIANG Wen-chong (CHN) 67-69-67.
204 - David LIPSKY (USA) 66-69-69, Nicholas FUNG (MAS) 70-64-70.
205 - Himmat RAI (IND) 68-69-68, Jazz JANEWATTANANOND (THA) 64-69-72.
206 - Sutijet KOORATANAPISAN (THA) 67-71-68, S.S.P. CHOWRASIA (IND) 71-66-69.
207 - Matthew STIEGER (AUS) 66-73-68, Thitiphun CHUAYPRAKONG (THA) 66-73-68, David LUTTERUS (AUS) 68-70-69, Jaakko MAKITALO (FIN) 69-68-70, HUNG Chien-yao (TPE) 68-68-71, Stephen LEWTON (ENG) 70-66-71, Mithun PERERA (SRI) 69-67-71, Adilson DA SILVA (BRA) 68-67-72, Prom MEESAWAT (THA) 67-67-73, Angelo QUE (PHI) 67-66-74.
208 - MO Joong-kyung (KOR) 71-68-69, Pariya JUNHASAVASDIKUL (THA) 68-70-70, Anthony KANG (USA) 67-71-70, LAM Chih Bing (SIN) 67-70-71, Thaworn WIRATCHANT (THA) 69-68-71, Carlos PIGEM (ESP) 68-66-74.
Selected scores
212 - Digvijay SINGH (IND) 70-68-74, Jyoti RANDHAWA (IND) 72-69-71, Mardan MAMAT (SIN) 213 - ZHANG Lian-wei (CHN) 68-72-73, Rory HIE (INA) 73-67-73



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