10th June 2019 | Asian Tour
Overseas Watch: Horikawa claims breakthrough win in Japan
Photo credit: Japan Golf Tour Organisation
Ibaraki, Japan, June 10: Asian Tour Qualifying School graduate Mikumu Horikawa of Japan completed a wire-to-wire victory on home soil after closing with a three-under-par 68 to claim his first professional title at the JGTC Mori Building Cup Shishido Hills 2019 on Sunday.
Horikawa, who is set to make his U.S. Open debut after coming through the Sectional Qualifying in Japan two weeks ago, returned with a round of five birdies against two bogeys to compile a four-day total of 15-under-par 269 at the Shishido Hills Country Club.
The 26-year-old Horikawa, who turned professional in November 2014, would triumph by four shots over compatriot and playing partner Shugo Imahira (68) in the 20th edition of the prestigious event held on the Japan Golf Tour Organisation (JGTO).
Former Asian Tour member Chan Kim of the United States stole the limelight by firing a course-record 62 to finish in third place alongside Thailand’s Jazz Janewattananond on matching 274s.
Jazz missed a 15-footer for birdie on the last hole 18th for a joint runner-up finish, which would help him break into top-60 on the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) to qualify for the U.S. Open this week.
His tied-third place result moved him to 61st place on the OWGR, where he would miss the cut-off mark by one rung for the year’s third Major championship.
It was, however, a new career-high world ranking for the 23-year-old Thai, who put up a fantastic run in Japan with back-to-back top-five finishes. He came in tied-fifth at the Gate Way to The Open Mizuno Open a fortnight ago.