Atwal tied 36th, Tanihara wins title in Japan

September 28th, 2008 - 4:42 pm ICT by IANS  

Osaka, Sep 28 (IANS) Arjun Atwal closed his campaign at the Asia-Pacific Panasonic Open golf with a listless three-over 73 that saw him finish the week in tied 36th place Sunday.Atwal, who opened with a double bogey never really recovered and despite two birdies on the back nine, he ended with a 73 and a total of two-under 278. Japan’s Hideto Tanihara won by one stroke at Ibaraki Country Club’s West Course.

Tanihara battled hard for a four-under-par 66 in the final round to hold off his close friend and overnight leader Azuma Yano, who shot a 67 in the US$1.85 million event sanctioned by the Asian Tour and Japan Golf Tour.

It was so close yet so far once again for Chinese star Liang Wen-chong, who made a bold charge with a 65 but settled for joint third place alongside Kenichi Kuboya, two behind the winner. It was Liang’s seventh top-three finish in Japan.

New Zealand’s Mark Brown eagled the last hole for a 67 to share fifth place with Kaname Yokoo and strengthened his lead at the top of the Asian Tour’s Order of Merit while Korea’s Bae Sang-moon carded an unlucky 68 for equal seventh position.

Tanihara, who led with Yano after Saturday’s third round, was delighted to capture his second title of the year and career eighth win after accumulating a four-day total of 16-under-par 264.

The 29-year-old Tanihara pocketed the winner’s cheque of US$387,034.

Tanihara, who moves up to the top of the Japan money rankings, said his wife Ayaka has been a big influence in his game ever since they tied the knot earlier this year.

Brown, who has won twice in Asia this season, rolled in a 12-foot eagle putt at the last which saw him enjoy a first top-five finish since April. The Kiwi increased his season’s haul to approximately US$725,600.

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