Lin eyes Asian Tour International title defence

January 21st, 2009 - 6:38 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangkok, Jan 21 (IANS) Chinese Taipei golfing star Lin Wen-tang is eyeing a successful title defence of the $300,000 Asian Tour International title here next month.Lin, winner of two titles en route to a career high second place on the Order of Merit last season, will be joined by an elite field which includes local heroes Thaworn Wiratchant, Boonchu Ruangkit and Prayad Marksaeng and recent Qualifying School winner Daisuke Maruyama of Japan.

The Asian Tour International will be played at Suwan Golf and Country Club from Feb 5 to 8.

Lin said he was eager to start his new season on a winning note in preparation of his maiden major appearance at the US Masters in April. He received the official invitation from Augusta National Golf Club two weeks ago, thanks to his rise into the top-50 of the Official World Golf Ranking.

Lin is also looking forward to the next few months as he will also compete in World Golf Championships events prior to his Masters appearance. Lin will be the first player from Chinese Taipei in 20 years to play at Augusta National.

The 34-year-old produced a sensational victory at last year’s inaugural Asian Tour International, romping to a five-stroke victory over teen star Noh Seung-yul with a closing 64. But with the event being played at a new venue at the highly rated Suwan course, Lin knows he must raise his game a notch in hope of a good week.

Although he has playing rights in Europe following his memorable victory in Hong Kong, Lin is still unsure if he will commit himself to the continent and has skipped the on-going Middle East swing.

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