Golf: Singapore's Lam leads Salcon Negeri Masters
Posted: 09 July 2009 2302 hrs
KUALA LUMPUR: Singapore's Lam Chih Bing fired a superb seven-under 65 to lead by two strokes at the RM400,000 Salcon Negeri Masters 2009 Invitational at the Seremban International Golf Club on Thursday.
Lam's flawless round of seven birdies - three in a row starting at the first hole before adding four more at the sixth, 10th, 11th and 13th hole - equalled the course record held by Australia's Unho Park in the same tournament in 2007, Bernama news reported.
"Obviously, I'm pleased with my tee-shots today, where I kept it on the fairways. I also had a superb day with my putter and sank a couple of incredible putts even though the greens are devilishly slick," Lam was quoted as saying in a statement released by the tournament organiser.
Meanwhile, last year's runner-up and 2007 Selangor Masters champion, Philippines' Antonio Lascuna and Thailand's P. Atthaphon shared second placing with two strokes behind Lam on five-under 67.
"I'm satisfied with my score today although the greens were a little unpredictable," said Lascuna.
Locals C.M. Chong and Ahmad Jamil tied in fourth placing on four-under 68 with two other players, Mars Pucay of the Philippines and Lu Chien Soon of Taiwan.
Local professionals, Danny Chia and Airil Rizman Zahari returned a 72 and a 71 respectively.
Defending champion Benjie Magada from the Philippines fired a two-under 70.
However, it was a disappointing start for Mardan Mamat, the ninth ranked player on the Asian Tour Order of Merit. The Singaporean struggled on the testy greens firing four birdies against six bogeys for a two-over 74.
First round results:
65 - Lam Chih Bing (SIN)
67 - Antonio Lascuna (PHI), P. Attaphon (THA)
68 - Mars Pucay (PHI), Lu Chien Soon (TPE), Chong Chi Ming (MAS), Ahmad Jamil (MAS)
69 - P. Gunasegaran (MAS), Chou Hung Nan (TPE), Thaworn Wiranchant (THA), Anis Hassan (MAS), Tseng Shih Hsin (TPE), Chen Po Ming (TPE), Juvic Pagunsan (PHI), Kim Young Jin (KOR).