Lee snatches win to end title drought at PGM CCM championship

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 13 — American Han Lee ended a five-year title drought after carding a seven-under-par 65 to seal his maiden Asian Development Tour (ADT) victory at the weather- shortened PGM CCM Championship today.

According to an ADT statement, the 41-year-old Lee overturned a two-shot deficit to claim his maiden ADT victory by two shots on a 13-under-par 203 total over Malaysia’s Wilson Choo, who ended with a 69 to take second place at the RM225,000 event.

Officials were forced to shorten the PGM CCM Championship which was held at Kota Seriemas Golf and Country Club in Nilai, Negeri Sembilan, to 54-holes on Friday, due to several weather delays that resulted in more than 12 hours of play lost.

Lee was amongst the 56 players who returned on Saturday morning to complete their third and final round.

“I told my caddy to keep an eye on the leaderboard and the guys in front and I knew it would be a close fight. It feels so good to be winning again. It has been a long time since my last win in Japan and everything is starting to come together again. I was striking it well and dropping a lot of putts this week.

 “Playing in Japan, you get in a bubble and forget how good players are getting outside of Japan. Here I am playing with guys that are hungry to win every single week and that makes me want to do so much better,” said Lee, who had played on the Asian Tour in 2007 and 2008, but has been playing his trade on the Japan Golf Tour since then.

He claimed his first victory on the Japan circuit in 2012 at the Mynavi ABC Championship and another in Japan in 2013, but has not had a win since then.

With his win, Lee took home six Official World Golf Ranking points and winner’s prize purse of RM39,375 which catapulted him to third place on the ADT Order of Merit.

Local hope Choo was disappointed to miss the opportunity to secure a second ADT title this week, after coming so close and missing a three-foot putt for par on the very last hole that would have forced a play-off.

“All I can say is I gave it my best. Han (Lee) just played solid golf today and all I could do was to try and keep as close as possible. Still I did really well this week and I know another win is just around the corner,” said Choo.

The leading seven players on the ADT Order of Merit at the end of the season will earn playing rights on the Asian Tour for the 2019 season.

Final round scores:

203 - Han Lee (USA) 68-70-65;

205 -      Wilson Choo (MAS) 64-72-69;

206 -      Miguel Carballo (ARG) 73-67-66;

208 -      Shin Hyukchul (KOR) 72-68-68;

209 -      Donlaphatchai Niyomchon (THA) 71-69-69;014

210 -      Mathiam Keyser (RSA) 69-72-69. — Bernama