Dhaka, May 30: Singaporean veteran Mardan Mamat was inspired by his wife’s special message as he posted a two-under-par 69 to cruise to a two-shot victory at the US$300,000 Bashundhara Bangladesh Open on Saturday.
The 47-year-old completed a wire-to-wire win with a 14-under-par 270 total to win his fifth Asian Tour title and lift the unique trophy which was designed in the form of Bangladesh’s national animal, the Royal Bengal Tiger.
Khalin Joshi of India shot a 68 to tie for second place alongside Korea’s Soomin Lee, who posted a 67 at the Kurmitola Golf Club for their best result on the Asian Tour so far.
The day belonged to Mardan, who kept calm and composed in the heat. His overnight three-shot lead was reduced to one stroke after he bogeyed the fourth hole but he steadied ship with a pair of birdies from hole five before adding another birdie on the 12th hole.
“I’m the first Bashundhara Bangladesh Open winner so this is a special win. I talked to my wife (Naz) last night and she sent me a message saying ‘You are the champion, you are the winner and you are the man’. That really inspired me today,” said an emotional Mardan, who won US$54,000.
“If I say that I didn’t have any pressure today then I’m not human. Two of my competitors Lee and Khalin are young and they hit it long. They kept pushing me a lot on the front nine. I managed to steady myself and play my own game,” he added.
After poor results earlier in the year, a jubilant Mardan was delighted to turn the corner and even celebrated the win by dancing to the beat of the Bashundhara Bangladesh Open theme song during the prize giving ceremony.
“She sent me a message saying ‘You are the champion, you are the winner and you are the man’. That really inspired me today.” – Mardan on his wife Naz“During the welcome dinner, I heard the song for this tournament. I like the beat of the music and that kept me pumped up at the prize ceremony. That’s why I was jumping and dancing,” he laughed.
“I improved a lot on my mental game. I talk a lot to myself to motivate myself to play well. In fact, my wife and I have been talking a lot about my
game and confidence. She always inspires me and feed me positive thoughts. I’m very pleased with that,” said Mardan.
The 23-year-old Joshi, who was chasing for a first Asian Tour win, turned in 33 but struggled with a cold putter as he returned with eight straight pars and a closing birdie.
“I’m disappointed with my result but not my game. To be honest, I expected to win. My putter let me down the whole week. If I putted better, I could have won this tournament. But Mardan got the better out of everybody. He played really well from tee to green. He is the rightful champion,” said Joshi.
Asian Tour Qualifying School graduate Lee holed a 20-foot eagle putt on the 17th to put some pressure on Mardan but a par on the last hole could only earn him a second place result.
“Maybe next time I will win. Mardan played very well. I’m very happy with my result. I didn’t play well on the front nine so I didn’t put pressure on the leader. It is okay because I did good this week,” said the 21-year-old Lee.
Scores after round 4 of the Bashundhara Bangladesh Open 2015 being played at the par 71, 6579 Yards Kurmitola GC course (am – denotes amateur):
270 – Mardan MAMAT (SIN) 66-67-68-69.
272 – Soomin LEE (KOR) 70-70-65-67, Khalin JOSHI (IND) 71-68-65-68.
273 – Carlos PIGEM (ESP) 67-67-73-66.
277 – Chinnarat PHADUNGSIL (THA) 74-67-69-67.
278 – Thaworn WIRATCHANT (THA) 70-72-70-66, Berry HENSON (USA) 71-67-71-69, Amardip MALIK (IND) 67-74-68-69, Panuphol PITTAYARAT (THA) 69-66-72-71.
279 – Rattanon WANNASRICHAN (THA) 67-73-72-67, Sujjan SINGH (IND) 68-74-70-67.
280 – Rahil GANGJEE (IND) 74-70-67-69, Om Prakash CHOUHAN (IND) 69-73-66-72.
281 – LEE Chieh-po (TPE) 73-69-73-66, Akinori TANI (JPN) 72-71-71-67, LAM Chih Bing (SIN) 73-72-67-69, Chapchai NIRAT (THA) 73-68-71-69.
282 – Pavit TANGKAMOLPRASERT (THA) 71-74-69-68, Shakhawat SOHEL (BAN) 74-71-68-69, Hyungjoon LEE (KOR) 72-69-67-74.
For further information, please contact Doyle De Costa at the Bashundhara Bangladesh Open media centre at +6012 699 1976.
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