Glenelg’s Lachlan Barker wins Malaysian Amateur

Australia’s Lachlan Barker pulled off a hard-fought victory at the 114th Malaysian Amateur Open by carding a final-round-1-under-par 71, bringing his tournament total to 287, and winning on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff against Thailand’s Wichayanon Chothirunrungrueng on Sunday.

Wichayanon squandered his 2-stroke lead to finish second after he three-putted the second play-off hole.

Barker knew in order to stay in contention on the narrow course he would have to keep the ball straight and hit fairways. Barker was able to execute his strategy, hitting 11 fairways, the most he hit all week.

The South Australian was also pleased with his short game, which helped him save par on a few holes.

“It was nerve wrecking on the sudden-death playoff,” Barker said. “I’m really lost for words. I thought there was an outside chance I would be able to contend today, but I really didn’t think I was actually going to win; especially with how well Wichayanon was playing.”

After a bogey on the 3rd and 6th holes, Barker had to make birdie on the 18th hole to force a playoff. It was Barker’s first visit to Malaysia with a memorable win at one of the oldest tournaments in the world.

Wichayanon of Thailand took sole possession of second place with a final round 71 for a tournament total 287 with Philippines’ Ruperto Zaragosa at third place with a combined score of 288. Abdul Hadi of Singapore and Yuan Wei Lin of Tiawan shared fourth spot with a tournament total of 1-over-par 289.

Zaragosa who began the final round with 2-stroke lead had to settle for third place after carding a final-round 5-over-par 77 for a 288 tournament total.

Malaysian best finisher after third round was Amir Nazrin who was selected to join the 2017 SEA Games. He carded a four-day scores of 3-over-par 291 to finish tied 8th.

Datuk Zain Mohamed Yusuf, the Vice President of the Malaysian Golf Association congratulated Barker for his hard-fought victory. He then praised Templer Park Country Club for continuously supporting MGA and its activities at the prize giving ceremony. He also expressed his heartfelt thank to Vascory Group for sponsoring the Championship.

Canberra’s Josh Armstrong closed with a 73 to finish in a tie for 6th place at 2-over while Victoria’s Andrew Schonewille was another seven strokes back in a tie for 22nd.

Victoria Golf Club’s Tyler Wooster was the next best at 12-over with Heath Riches (+17), Joshua Hayes (+22) and Scott Ready (+26) rounding out the seven-man Aussie field.