Thaworn pulls three clear
Thaworn Wiratchant stayed in control of the US$300,000 Hero Honda
Indian Open at Delhi Golf Club after carding a four-under-par 68
for a three shot lead on Saturday.
The in-form Thai, the leader of the Asian Tour Order of Merit after
two wins this year, leads from his young compatriot Prom Meesawat
and South African Hendrik Buhrmann.
The very tight fairways of Delhi Golf Club do not suite the game
of Thaworn, who admits to not being the straightest hitter with
his driver, but the lightweight Thai has played effectively and
cautiously from the tee with his three wood and irons.
"I have not hit my driver in three days," said Thaworn,
who finished equal fifth in this event last year at the same venue.
"There was some pressure today as it was more windy after about
12 holes. I just tried to keep the ball on the fairway," added
the Thai, who lies on 14 under par 202.
Thaworn, who fired six birdies and made two bogeys, is in search
of his third national Open title 2005 as he claimed the Indonesian
Open in March and the Taiwan Open in September.
"I feel I have been playing on the same level throughout this
year but the course this week is really pushing me. The courses
in Indonesia and Taiwan where much easier. Delhi Golf Club is a
very tight layout. In Indonesia if I missed the fairway it was okay
but if you miss here you are in the bushes," said the Thai
Thaworn will be joined in the final group by the rising star of
golf in Thailand, Prom.
The 21 year old from Hua Hin put himself on the brink of his first
win on the Asian Tour after carding a 69.
"I played pretty good but today putting was the main thing.
I made about four good putts to save par. I just wanted to play
the first three rounds in under par and so I am happy to have done
that. I have only missed one fairway in three days," said Prom,
who won the World Junior Championships in San Diego on two occasions
during a glittering amateur career.
Buhrmann will play in the last group thanks to a 69, while a stroke
further back is Indian Jyoti Randhawa.
Randhawa, the champion in 2000, keen to end the year on a good note
made his big move carding a 67.
"I wish I could have had a couple of more birdies as that would
have made the leader (Thaworn) more nervous on last day. But still
four shots at Delhi Golf Club is nothing," said Randhawa.
"I am not playing as great as I want to, but today was more
relaxed than first two days, when I put too much pressure on myself,"
His compatriot Arjun Atwal had been expected to also climb the leader
board but shot a disappointing 73 in the event he won in 1999 for
his maiden victory on the Asian Tour. He lies on five under.
Defending champion Mardan Mamat from Singapore also carded a 73
and is level for the tournament.
Leading third round scores:
202 - Thaworn Wiratchant (THA) 68-66-68
205 - Hendrik Buhrmann (RSA) 66-70-69, Prom Meesawat (THA) 69-67-69
206 - Jyoti Randhawa (IND) 69-70-67
207 - Jaiveer Virk (IND) 68-71-68, Terry Pilkadaris (AUS) 67-70-70,
Marcus Both (AUS) 70-66-71
208 - Gaurav Ghei (IND) 67-72-69, Anura Rohana (SRI) 64-75-69, Bryan
Saltus (USA) 68-70-70, Digvijay Singh (IND) 66-70-72, Harmeet Kahlon
209 - Muhammed Munir (PAK) 68-72-69, Yusuf Ali (IND) 72-67-70
210 - Ross Bain (SCO) 69-73-68, James Kingston (RSA) 76-66-68, Shamim
Khan (IND) 71-68-71, Scott Taylor (USA) 71-67-72, Gary Simpson (AUS)
211 - Rahil Gangjee (IND) 72-71-68, Robin Hodgetts (AUS) 72-70-69,
Mukesh Kumar (IND) 71-69-71, Shiv Kapur (IND) 70-69-72, Alistair
Presnell (AUS) 69-70-72
Rick Gibson (CAN) 73-65-73, Arjun Atwal (IND) 70-68-73, Gary Rusnak
October 29, 2005