Jeev’s win emphasises strength of Indian and Asian golf

November 17th, 2008 - 5:51 pm ICT by IANS  

Sentosa (Singapore), Nov 17 (IANS) Jeev Milkha Singh’s accomplished victory over a world-class field at the Barclays Singapore Open golf Sunday has once again shown the strength and class of Indian golfers.The former Asian No.1 produced an impressive one-stroke victory over Padraig Harrington and Ernie Els at Sentosa Golf Club to seal his third victory of the season and virtually clinched the Asian Tour’s Order of Merit title for the second time in three years.

Among the other Indians in the field, Gaurav Ghei (74, 71, 66, 76) finished tied 22nd at three over 287 and Shiv Kapur (74, 72, 73, 70) was 31st at five over 289. Jyoti Randhawa was a stroke behind Shiv Kapur in tied 32nd while S.S.P. Chowrasia ended tied 41st at seven over 291. Digvijay Singh’s total of 10 over 294 placed him tied 58th.

Jeev also became the first player in the Asian Tour’s history to earn over $1 million in a single season, which Asian Tour’s Executive Chairman Kyi Hla Han said reflected the continued expansion of the game across the region.

Asian Tour stalwart David Gleeson of Australia finished fourth while South Korean Charlie Wi was sixth. Talented Thai Chapchai Nirat settled for tied seventh place in a field that also included world No.3 Phil Mickelson of the US.

“I would like to extend our congratulations to Jeev Milkha Singh for his outstanding victory in the Barclays Singapore Open,” said Han. “The victory cemented Jeev’s stature as a truly world-class player and the manner in which he won underlined his growing credentials in the world of golf.”

“Over the years, Jeev has been a wonderful ambassador for the Asian Tour, winning titles in Europe and Japan this year as well. Through the Asian Tour, Jeev has grown to become a terrific player and I am convinced he will go on to win many other big championships and also contend and win Major events in the years to come.”

He was also delighted to see history being written at Sentosa, home of the Asian Tour, where Jeev raised his season’s earnings to an unprecedented $1.4 million. He also dislodged Thailand’s Thongchai Jaidee as the leader of the career earnings in Asia, taking his tally to $2.45 million.

“We are absolutely thrilled to welcome Jeev as our first million-dollar man in a single season on the Asian Tour. Part of our mission is to create greater playing opportunities for our members and through this historic landmark, it reinforces the strength of the game in Asia.”

“I am convinced that Jeev’s success will inspire other young players across Asia to emulate his success,” said Han.

Han also congratulated Gleeson and the other Asian Tour stars who excelled against many of the best players in Sentosa, saying it was a wonderful reflection of the rising standard of the game in Asia.

“Many of our players challenged for honours against best players in the world in a truly world-class venue, which received rave reviews from the star players.

Players like David Gleeson, Chapchai Nirat and Lam Chih Bing of Singapore produced wonderful performances that will enhance not only their games, but also the belief that the Asian Tour has helped produced great champions like Jeev.”

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