Jakarta, July 15: Brett Munson of the United States got off to a hot start when he returned with a flawless five-under-par 67 to take the opening round lead at the Linc Group Jakarta Classic on Tuesday.
England’s Grant Jackson, local hope K. Soewarno and Annop Tangkamolprasert of Thailand trailed the leader by two shots in tied-second place after carding matching 69s at the Imperial Klub Golf.
Local prospects Benny Kasiadi and Ian Andrew were a further shot back in tied-fifth place alongside American Jeff Lai, Niall Turner of Ireland and South African Mathiam Keyser at the US$60,000 ADT event, which is the ninth stop on the ADT this year.
Title holder James Bowen of the United States will have to make up ground after carding a 75 to take a share of 48th place.
Having missed out on the opportunity to earn an Asian Tour card at the Qualifying School earlier this year, Munson decided to turn his attention to the ADT where he won his first victory in March and secured one other top-five result.
Currently ranked third on the ADT Order of Merit, Munson shot five birdies to kick start his campaign in Indonesia where he hopes to win a second victory on the burgeoning Tour which is the gateway to the premier Asian Tour.
“I played some solid golf. This course suits my game a lot. It’s good to be back on the ADT after a short break. I’ve been working on my game and it’s great to be playing well again after missing the cut in the previous tournament. Hopefully I can continue to do well over the next three days,” said the 27-year-old Munson.
Jackson, ranked 10th on the Order of Merit, kept chase for his first victory this season as he set his sights on making a move on the Merit list where the top five players at the end of the season will earn Asian Tour cards for 2015.
“I always try my best to win in every tournament I play. This week is no exception. I had a generally good round today. This week is the start of a series of events on the ADT. I hope to build up on my good form and secure a good result this week so that I can be in a good shape for the next few tournaments,” added Jackson
Soewarno, who plays regularly on the domestic Tour, took advantage of the opportunity to play on the ADT this week and is hoping to continue his good run of form. The leading Indonesian stumbled with a double-bogey on the fourth but recovered swiftly with five birdies to put himself in contention after the first round of the Linc Group Jakarta Classic.
“My game was not too bad today. The wind got stronger in the afternoon but that didn’t really affect my game. I’m feeling pretty confident right now and I hope to keep up my good form,” said Soewarno.
This season, the ADT will reward the top five players on the final Order of Merit with playing rights for the 2015 Asian Tour season. Previously, the top-three players were offered Asian Tour cards since the ADT’s launch in 2010.
Leading first round scores:
67 – Brett MUNSON (USA)
69 – Grant JACKSON (ENG), K. Soewarno (INA), Annop TANGKAMOLPRASERT (THA)
70 – Benny KASIADI (INA), Ian ANDREW (INA), Jeff LAI (USA), Niall TURNER (IRL), Mathiam KEYSER (RSA)
71 – Sarmilih (INA), Jordan SHERRATT (AUS), Rory HIE (INA), Konosuke NAKAZATO (JPN), I Ketut SUGIARTA (INA), Clarke LUTTON (SCO), Pavit TANGKAMOLPRASERT (THA), Mitchell SLORACH (SIN), Jack MUNRO (AUS), Kurnia Herisiandy SANTOSO (INA)
Source: Asian Tour