Phachara seizes outright lead at the Sabah Masters | Asian Tour

Phachara seizes outright lead at the Sabah Masters

Published on November 23, 2019

Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia, November 23: Young Thai talent Phachara Khongwatmai returned on Saturday morning to complete the remaining four holes of his second round and sign for a four-under-par 67 to grab a two-shot halfway lead at the Sabah Masters.

The 20-year-old Phachara, who emerged as one of the four co-leaders following the opening round, moved into the outright lead after carding five birdies against a bogey for a two-day total of nine-under-par 133 at the Sutera Harbour Golf and Country Club.

Chinese Taipei’s Wang Wei-lun, Australian stalwart David Gleeson, as well as the Korean duo of Sungho Lee and Dongha Lee, shared second place after posting rounds of 68, 69, 68 and 67 respectively at the US$300,000 event.

Sweden’s Malcolm Kokocinski settles three shots off the pace in sixth with India’s Udayan Mane while newly crowned Asian Tour champion Jooohyung Kim of Korea is amongst those bunched in eighth place on 137.

A total of 69 players survived the halfway cut set at one-over-par 143. The second round of the Sabah Masters was halted by inclement weather on Friday and a total of 52 players returned to complete their rounds at 7.00am local time on Saturday.

The third and penultimate round of the Sabah Masters has commenced at 10.00am. For live scores and tee times, please click here.

The US$300,000 Sabah Masters, supported by the Tourism Malaysia with an aim to boost tourism in Sabah, is the ninth full-field event on the 2019 Asian Tour schedule.


Malcolm Kokocinski of Sweden

Did you know?

  • Dongha Lee of Korea has not yet won on Tour, but he has two tied-second place finishes on the Korean Tour in 2017 and 2018.
  • His best result on the Asian Tour is a tied-ninth at the 37th GS Caltex Maekyung Open Golf Championship in 2018, and he also finished tied-eight at the same event in 2019.
  • After narrowly missing his Asian Tour card by one shot at Q-School last December, Lee is playing on a country exemption this season and has made just over US$18,000 in his only three events.
  • Lee’s first love was actually football. However, upon the encouragement of his parents to play golf at the age of 12, he got hooked to the sport and subsequently led him to turn professional in 1996.
  • Malcolm Kokocinski claimed his breakthrough win at the 2018 AB Bank Bangladesh Open.
  • Kokocinski first came to Asia in 2013 where he played on the Asian Development Tour (ADT) after failing to make the mark at the Asian Tour Qualifying School. He came through the Qualifying School for the first time after finishing fifth in 2016 but failed to retain his card for the following season after ending the season in 71st place on the Order of Merit.
  • The 28-year-old Swede turned professional in 2012 and is based in Hua Hin, Thailand.  
  • Sitting in 81st place on the Asian Tour Order of Merit, Kokocinski needs a strong showing this week to boost his ranking and break inside top-60 at the end of the season to retain his playing rights for 2020.
  • At a young age of 17 years and 149 days, Joohyung Kim became the second youngest professional to win on the Asian Tour when he claimed his maiden win on the region’s premier Tour at the Panasonic Open India last week. It was only his third start on the Asian Tour this season.
  • Kim had posted a third-place finish at the Bank BRI Indonesia Open and a tied-sixth place result at the Thailand Open prior to his Asian Tour breakthrough.
  • The Korean talent had earned his playing rights for the remainder of the 2019 Asian Tour season after clinching his third title on the Asian Development Tour (ADT) this season in Pakistan last month.
Joohyung Kim of Korea