Monday, January 19, 2015

Benita Kasiadi Seals First Victory In Indonesian Golf Tour At Matoa

Jakarta, January 16, 2015 - A new season, a new champion, when the season-opening event of the Indonesian Golf Tour welcomed a new champion in Benita Yuniarto Kasiadi. He finished the tournament, held at Matoa National Golf Course, with a score of 71-69-69 at seven-under-par (209). Second round leader Indra Hermawan, veteran Maan Nasim and amateur golfer Kevin C. Akbar kept putting pressure on the leader, when on hole 18 all three of them had the opportunity to score a birdie and force a play-off, but unfortunately all three of them failed to score a birdie on this final hole, handing victory to Benita Yuniarto Kasiadi.

"I am very happy to be a champion today. This is my first win since 2010. Glad to be included in the Champion category", said Kasiadi

"I am a little bit disappointed with my putts today. I failed in many occasions. But in the end I am very grateful for the results achieved", added the 27-year-old player.

Amateur player Kevin C. Akbar ended up being in a second place tie with Indra Hermawan and Maan Nasim. Kevin became the amateur player with the lowest score with 70-68-72, six-under-par (205). Maan Nasim scored 69-69-72 while Indra Hermawan scored 68-69-73.

"I did not hit good from the tee today. But I had a good short game. I felt a bit lucky today, it is quite difficult to put the ball into the hole. At hole 18 I felt the pressure, I tried my best therefore enjoyed my game" said Kevin C. Akbar.

In addition to Kevin, there are six amateur golfers who survived the cut. Indonesian Golf Tour Presented by Linc Group proves that the Indonesian amateurs increasingly get stronger to compete with professional Indonesian players, and the hope for the future is that more and more amateurs, both men and women, will participate in the next tournament.

Leading scores after final round of the Indonesian Golf Tour At Matoa (Par 72):

209 - Benita Y. KASIADI 71-69-69

210 - Kevin C AKBAR (am) 70-68-72, Maan NASIM 69-69-72, Indra HERMAWAN 68-69-73

211 - George GANDRANATA 74-67-70

213 - GUNAWAN 70-70-72

213 - Junaidi IBRAHIM 70-76-67, Rory HIE 69-76-68, Jordan Surya IRAWAN 75-68-70, Fahmi REZA 71-68-74

Saturday, January 17, 2015

OneAsia Set For Lucrative Seventh Season

January 17 - The OneAsia schedule in 2015 will feature at least 10 events boasting overall prize money of nearly US$12 million and a strong line up of tournaments across the Asia-Pacific region.

The multi-million dollar circuit, which is now in its seventh year of excellence, sees two Final Stage Qualifying Schools take place in January and February in the United States and Malaysia respectively, before the first event of the year, the Volvo China Open tees off from April 23 to 26.

China’s national Open is the perfect curtain raiser for the season as it offers prize money of RMB20,000,000 (approx US$3.23 million) and is jointly sanctioned with the European Tour.

Korea’s top three golf tournaments the GS Caltex Maekyung Open (May 14 - 17), the Kolon Korea Open (September 10 - 13), and the SK Telecom Open (date tbc) will once again help form a strong back bone to the schedule.

Mid-way through the year OneAsia will also take a popular swing through Southeast Asia for the Thailand Open (June 11 – 14) and the Indonesia PGA Championship (July 30 – August 2). Both events will be jointly-sanctioned with the Japan Golf Tour Organisation (JGTO).

The Nanshan China Masters (September 24 -27), which since its launch in 2011 is quickly becoming one of the most prestigious events on the mainland, returns to the calendar as does the Fiji International (October 15 - 18), which was inaugurated with great success last year.

As per last year the season will culminate Down Under with the Emirates Australian Open (November 26 - 29) and the Australian PGA Championship, the dates for which will be confirmed later.

The Dongfeng Nissan Cup, a Ryder Cup-style match between China and Asia Pacific, will also help bring the year to an exciting conclusion.

“OneAsia will once again offer a multi-million dollar circuit featuring many of the most prestigious events in our region,” said OneAsia Commissioner and Chairman Sang Y. Chun.

We are also working hard to add more events to OneAsia for this season and the years ahead. We currently boast a solid schedule that has huge potential to accomplish our mission of creating a Tour that will allow players from Asia-Pacific to go on to become world beaters.”

This year players will attempt to match Kim Seung-hyuk’s majestic 2014 when he claimed the OneAsia Order of Merit title with earnings of US$501,990.

He marched to victory in two events on home soil, the SK Telecom Open in May and the Kolon Korea Open in October.

OneAsia was founded in 2009 by the China Golf Association, the Korea Golf Tour, the Korea Golf Association and the PGA of Australia and is the first ever circuit in the region that covers the whole of the Asia-Pacific rim.

2015 OneAsia Schedule:
Jan 27-30Qualifying School California, Final StageIndustry Hills Golf Club, California
Feb 10-13Qualifying School Kuala Lumpur, Final StageTempler Park CC, Kuala Lumpur
Apr 23-26Volvo China OpenTomson Shanghai Pudong Golf Club, Shanghai
May 14-17GS Caltex Maekyung Open Golf ChampionshipNamseoul Country Club
Jun 11-14Thailand OpenVenue TBA
Jul 30-Aug 2Indonesia PGA Championship Venue TBA
Sep 10-13Kolon Korea OpenWoo Jeong Hills Country Club
Sep 24-27Nanshan China MastersNanshan International GC, Nanshan
Oct 15-18Fiji InternationalNatadola Bay GC
Nov 26-29Emirates Australian OpenThe Australian Golf Club, Sydney
Date TBCSK Telecom OpenVenue TBC
Date TBCDongfeng Nissan CupFoisan Golf Club, Guangzhou
Date TBCAustralian PGA Championship Venue TBC

Top Ten Finish For Joeh Seik At Sabah Masters

January 17, Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia - Singaporean Mardan Mamat prevailed in a pulsating final round to claim a masterful four-shot victory at the Sabah Masters on Saturday.

At his indomitable best, the 46-year-old successfully staved off a fierce challenge from Malaysia’s Danny Chia (67) and Arie Irawan (68) to triumph at the Sutera Harbour Golf & Country Club.

Even a late bogey on the 17 failed to ruffle Mamat, who notched four birdies in a closing three-under 68 to clinch his fourth ASEAN PGA Tour title with a solid 10-under-par 274 overall

Starting the final round with a four-shot cushion, Mamat came under immediate pressure from Chia, who rode a hot putter with six birdies through 11 holes, to half the deficit.

But Chia failed to narrow the gap further when he missed a short birdie putt on the 12th after Mamat had converted a five-footer of his own and the Malaysian number one suffered another unlucky break when he two-putted for bogey on the following hole to fall off the pace.

Similarly, Irawan's putting woes returned to haunt him after an inspired start as he fired blanks on the back nine to settle for a share of second alongside Chia on six-under 278.

Sabahan Ben Leong returned with a flawless 67 to finish sole fourth on 279, one stroke clear of Thailand's Sutijet Kooratanapisan (67) at the US$100,000 Tour Championship.

Indonesian amateur champion Joeh Seik finished strong with a round of 70, good for a total of 284 and a tie for ninth place. Meanwhile fellow countrymen Kurnia Herishandy and Adi Bramantio finished further down the leaderboard with scores of 295 and 303 respectively.

Picking up a cheque for US$16,675, Mamat was delighted to have preserved his four-shot overnight advantage after a hard-fought contest.

“I’ve come close a number of times at the Sabah Masters in the past and failed to finish it off, so to finally get my hands on this trophy, means a lot to me. It is nice to start off my 2015 season on a winning note and to be pushed all the way to the end for this win makes it all the more satisfying," said Mardan.

"I have to admit that Danny got off to a hot start and I had to resolutely defend my advantage. I knew that I had to shoot something like three to four-under today if I was going to be up here. Like, I've been saying all week, draining birdies were going to be crucial today and I'm very pleased with my performance - I struck the ball with a lot of conviction and my course management was excellent," he added.

He admitted that the turning point came at hole 12 when he managed to drain a tricky birdie putt while Chia did otherwise.

"I didn't expect Danny to miss that putt because he had an easier line than me. I holed my putt and began walking to the next tee when I heard the gallery gasp in despair.

"It is just one of those things that works in your favor and when he dropped a bogey on the next hole, I knew that I just had to nurse my advantage to the end," noted Mamat, who finished second on the Road to Sabah Masters rankings with a haul of US$20,085.

The veteran is enjoyed a purple patch of form and a second title is as many months after his runaway victory at the Resorts World Manila Masters at the end of last year means that he is no longer thinking about hanging up his clubs for good.

"The secret I believe is to stay healthy, keep breathing and play better golf - even when the chips are down," he quipped.

Leading final round scores (Par-71):

274 - Mardan MAMAT (SIN) 69-66-71-68

278 - Danny CHIA (MAL) 73-71-67-67, Arie IRAWAN (MAL)71-66-73-68

279 - Ben LEONG (MAL) 74-69-69-67

281 - Sutijet Kooratanpisan (THA) 69-73-72-67

282 - Masaru Takahashi (JPN) 73-66-73-70, Jay BAYRON (PHI) 72-67-73-70

283 - Antonio LASCUNA (PHI) 75-71-68-69

284 - Song Gyu YOO (KOR) 72-71-72-69, Wisut ARTJANAWAT (THA) 70-73-72-69, Mohd Sukree OTHMAN (MAL) 73-68-73-70, Joeh SEIK (INA - Am) 72-71-71-70, Pipatpong NAEWSUK (THA) 69-71-72-72, Kwanchai TANNIN (THA) 72-71-69-72


295 - Kurnia HERISHANDY (INA) 74-70-77-74

303 - Adi BRAMANTIO (INA) 75-73-76-79

CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters Cultivates Stars Of The Future

Jakarta, 15 January 2015 - The prestigious CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters will once more be a stop on the Asian Tour end of this April. As the top tier golf event in Indonesia, the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters has consistently supported the development of young Indonesian golfers.

In keeping with this principle, the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters has incorporated a Youth Development program, which seeks to support budding Indonesian golfers in further sharpening their skills. The program offers the opportunity for talented junior golfers to learn a variety of golfing techniques within a special coaching curriculum.

The coaching workshop will be divided into three sessions and will draw junior golfers from the Indonesian Golf Association (PGI) and the CIMB Foundation. Approximately 20 junior golfers will participate in each of the sessions, which will be held on January 25, February 15, and March 15. 5 outstanding participants from each session will be selected to receive exclusive access to the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters 2015. They will be afforded the opportunity to attend various tournament functions and meet with the stars of the event.

PT Bank CIMB Niaga Tbk (CIMB Niaga) as the title sponsor of the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters fully supports the Youth Development program.

“One of our goals in being the lead sponsor of the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters is to encourage the growth of youth golf in Indonesia. Through the Youth Development program, junior golfers are able to enjoy the feeling of a championship atmosphere that comes through an association with world class golfers. We are confident in reaching this goal and we are delighted to be a part of this growth process,” said CIMB Niaga President Director Arwin Rasyid.

Since its inception, the Youth Development program has worked closely with the PGI and CIMB Foundation which has proved integral in achieving the long-term goals of the program.

This Youth Development component has clear synergies with CIMB Foundation having one of the most extensive junior golf programs in the ASEAN region.

The collaboration of CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters and the CIMB Foundation has already succeeded in creating a junior golf framework that is similar in standards to the world of professional golf. A good example is Jordan Surya Irawan, a 19 year-old golfer who, with the support of the CIMB Foundation, was fortunate enough to join a number of other ASEAN golfers in training at the US PGA Tour Academy in Sawgrass, Florida five years ago.

After completing his training, Jordan was successful in winning a number of titles, including the champion of Enjoy Jakarta Junior World Golf Open 2011 and the ASEAN Schoolboys Golf Championship 2012. Jordan also won public attention as the youngest participant in the CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters 2012 at the age of 17.

Another product of the CIMB Foundation programme is Joshua Andrew Wirawan, who also had the opportunity to train in Florida. Like his predecessor, Andrew went on to become the champion of the Enjoy Jakarta World Junior Golf Championship 2012 and secured the runner-up position in a series of six Indonesian Golf Tour events.

“The PGI, along with other stakeholders, is very eager to further develop golf in Indonesia. We must increase programs aimed at the junior golfers in order to assure that there is a solid foundation for the regeneration of youth golf in Indonesia. The Youth Development program at CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters is very much aligned with our programs. This is what we need to continue to work on and increase the appeal of golf to parents and children alike”, Head of Junior Division of the PGI, Budi Kosasih was quoted as saying.

CIMB Niaga Indonesian Masters hopes that young golfers experience the benefits of the Youth Development program and that this generation of budding young golfers has a better future in store.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Indra Hermawan Stays On Top After Second Round Of Indonesian Golf Tour Presented By Linc Group

Jakarta, January 15 - In the second round of the first tournament of the 2015 season of the Indonesian Golf Tour Presented by Linc Group, Indra Hermawan played well while successfully defending his lead from the first round. Recording five birdies and a double bogey on the fifth hole, Indra kept the lead with a total score of seven-under-par (137).

"It was not lucky, I made a double bogey on the 5th hole when my tee off went into the bunker, the next shot failed to make green, and I only could complete the hole with three put", Indra said.

"But I put the ball in the hole to birdie the 6th and 7th hole and that restored my momentum. It make me continue to improve my scores by making more birdies on the back nine", the 34-year-old player added.

Pursuing closely in second place are rising amateur players Kevin C. Akbar, who rose significantly on the leaderboard with a total of six-under-par (136), to tie with senior player Maan Nasim.

George Gandranata (67), winner of the Order of Merit in 2014, and Rinaldi Adiyandono (73), Champion of the 2014 Indonesian Golf Tour Grand Finale, both are further back and are now tied in 8th position with 141 total.

A total of 54 players made the cut that was set at seven-over-par. They will play the third and final round on Friday at Matoa National Golf Course.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Ali Upstages Tamardi In Faldo Series Indonesia Championship

Jakarta, January 15 - Faraby Ali held his nerve to upstage in-form Tirto Tamardi and claim top honors in the eighth Faldo Series Indonesia Championship.

Thanks to a closing two-under-par 70 over Damai Indah Golf’s BSD Course near Jakarta, Ali overturned a one-stroke overnight deficit and edged out defending champion Tamardi.

It was a fine performance from Ali who posted a 54-hole aggregate of one-under-par 215 in the 18th leg of the record-breaking 2014-2015 Faldo Series Asia season.

That was one shot ahead of 15-year-old Tamardi who was a model of consistency throughout, signing for three rounds of even-par 72.

Although Tamardi was unable to retain his title, he will be part of a five-strong Indonesian contingent that will contest the ninth Faldo Series Asia Grand Final, an R&A World Amateur Golf Ranking event to be hosted by Sir Nick Faldo at Mission Hills Shenzhen in March.
[Left to right]: Faldo Series Indonesia Championship age group winners Ida Ayu Melati, Rivani Adelia Sihotang, Faraby Ali, Fadhli Rahman Soetarso and Tirto Tamardi

Fadhli Rahman Soetarso flourished in the Boys’ Under-18 Division, securing first place following a sudden-death play-off against M. Seandy Alfarabi.

Among the females, Ida Ayu Melati was a runaway winner in the Girls’ Under-21 Division. She set the tone with a solid opening 72 and never looked in danger of relinquishing her early advantage.

It was a closer contest in the Girls’ Under-16 Division with Rivani Adelia Sihotang holding off a brave last-round fightback from Inez Beatrice Wanamarta. Five shots in arrears heading into the final day, Wanamarta closed with a 74, reducing Sihotang’s margin of victory to two strokes.

But making light of a thunder delay on day one and a 45-minute stop for torrential rain on day two it was the performance of Ali that caught the eye as he won the Boys’ Under-21 Division for the second year in succession. This year, though, he showed a marked improvement, bettering his score from 2014 by no fewer than 12 strokes.

Six-time Major champion Sir Nick, Britain’s most successful golfer, said: “To improve by 12 shots from last year is an outstanding effort from Faraby Ali. His victory will, I’m sure, give him plenty of confidence as he prepares for the forthcoming Faldo Series Asia Grand Final.”

Supported by The R&A and Mission Hills and endorsed by the Asian Tour and the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation, the 2014-15 Faldo Series Asia campaign stretches over 11 months and is made up of 19 championships.

Recognised as the only global amateur series for boys and girls, the Faldo Series was established in 1996, expanding to Asia in 2006.

Today, 40 Faldo Series tournaments take place in 30-plus countries worldwide, touching more than 7,000 golfers each year. Past winners include Tseng Ya-ni and Rory McIlroy, who took his tally of professional Major titles to four with his wins at last year’s Open Championship and US PGA Championship.

Faldo Series Indonesia Championship, leading final scores:

Boys’ Under-21:

215 – Faraby Ali (77-68-70)

227 – Christopher Johan (75-74-78)

239 – Putu Andrew Mulyadi (83-80-76)

Boys’ Under-18:

219 – Fadhli Rahman Soetarso (76-71-72), M. Seandy Alfarabi (71-75-73)

223 – Yuma Salmun (74-78-71)

Boys’ Under-16

216 – Tirto Tamardi (72-72-72)

222 – Kevin Caesario Akbar (77-75-70), Stevanus Daniel Wirawan (73-72-77)

Girls’ Under-21

228 – Ida Ayu Melati (72-78-78)

237 – Victoria Chandra (80-78-79)

244 – Yeyen Safitri (83-82-79)

Girls’ Under-16

229 – Rivani Adelia Sihotang (73-79-77)

231 – Inez Beatrice Wanamarta (78-79-74)

233 – Nathania Damarisa Rim (83-82-79).

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Indra Hermawan And Rinaldi Adiyandono Share Lead In Opening Round Of Indonesia Golf Tour

Jakarta, January 14, 2015 - The Indonesian Golf Tour presented by Linc Group began the new season with organizing its first round at Matoa National Golf Course. Indra Hermawan and Rinaldi Adiyandono, Champion of the Indonesian Golf Tour Grand Finale 2014, share first place with a score of four-under-par (68), followed by Rory Hie, who tied with senior professional golfer Maan Nasim, with a three-under-par (69).

"I made five birdies and one bogey today. I was too aggressive on hole 16, tried to chip-in from apron but instead made bogey. Overall, a very good round today", said Rinaldi.

"The course was very nice. The fairways and greens were really good. A very challenging course. It looks easy, but is quite difficult," he added.

One of the champion of last year's Indonesian Golf Tour, James Bowen of the USA, commented: "The pitch here is quite good, I had to fight a little harder today. You really have to position your ball well to attack the pin.

"The Indonesian golfers have greatly evolved since I won the tournament in Jababeka Golf and Country Club. No question George (Gandranata - red) is the top Indonesian player and he has set a benchmark for all Indonesian professional golf players," said James Bowen.

The round was suspended for 20 minutes due to rain in the afternoon.

Shining bright among the amateur players, Kevin C. Akbar recorded a two-under-par (70), making four birdies and two bogeys today. He is in a tie with Junaidi Ibrahim and three others in 6th position.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Tamardi Set For Faldo Series Indonesia Championship Defence

Jakarta, January 8 - Highly-rated teenager Tirto Tamardi will be the player to beat when the eighth edition of the Faldo Series Indonesia Championship tees-off this weekend.

Following a succession of outstanding performances alongside the region’s leading professionals in recent months, the 15-year-old from Surabaya is already being touted as a star of the future.

But Tamardi’s immediate focus is simply to retain the Faldo Series Indonesia Championship title he won at a canter last year.

Since his seven-stroke success over Damai Indah Golf’s BSD Course in West Java exactly 12 months ago, Tamardi has enjoyed a memorable sequence.

Among the many highlights were a top-10 finish in September’s PGM MNRB Sarawak Championship, an Asian Development Tour event featuring a host of seasoned Asian professionals.

Tamardi also had the distinction of being one of only two amateurs to make the half-way cut in last month’s Bank BRI Indonesia Open, a fully-fledged Asian Tour event won by Irishman Padraig Harrington over Damai Indah’s PIK Course.

Those experiences are sure to stand Tamardi in good stead as he attempts to secure a return trip to Mission Hills China for the ninth Faldo Series Asia Grand Final, to be hosted by Sir Nick Faldo in March.

Tamardi will certainly be drawing on the memory of his brilliant performance last year when an opening nine-under-par 63 set him on course for a runaway victory.

He said: “Winning tournaments will always be the best experience. The one that I won’t forget was when I won the Faldo Series Indonesia last year. I had the lowest scores and that was one of the greatest experiences for me.”

Speaking ahead of the 18th leg of the record-breaking 2014-2015 Faldo Series Asia season, six-time Major championship winner Sir Nick, Britain’s most successful golfer, said: “Tirto is clearly a talented player who has already proved that he has both the game and the temperament to succeed.

“I will be following closely his progress at Damai Indah in what promises to be another exciting tournament.”

Supported by The R&A and Mission Hills and endorsed by the Asian Tour and the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation, the 2014-15 Faldo Series Asia campaign stretches over 11 months and is made up of 19 championships.

Recognised as the only global amateur series for boys and girls, the Faldo Series was established in 1996, expanding to Asia in 2006.

Today, 40 Faldo Series tournaments take place in 30-plus countries worldwide, touching more than 7,000 golfers each year. Past winners include Tseng Ya-ni and Rory McIlroy, who took his tally of professional Major titles to four with his wins at last year’s Open Championship and US PGA Championship.