Hasegawa ready to lead ADT winners at Taifong Open

Fri 10 Aug 2018

Hasegawa ready to lead ADT winners at Taifong Open

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Changhwa, Chinese Taipei, August 10: Japan’s Shohei Hasegawa will lead a host of Asian Development Tour (ADT) winners in the fifth edition of the Taifong Open that will get underway from August 16 to 19 at Taifong Golf Course.

The 25-year-old Japanese currently lies in third place behind Thailand’s Nitithorn Thippong and Singapore’s Johnson Poh, but a victory at the US$160,000 event would put him in good stead in the ADT Order of Merit race.

Hasegawa will feature alongside defending champion and reigning ADT number one Pannakorn Uthaipas of Thailand, American Josh Salah, Japan’s Kazuki Higa and Pavit Tangkamolprasert of Thailand, who are all winners on the ADT.

Hailing from Hiroshima, the Japanese claimed his maiden ADT victory at the OB Golf Invitational in March followed by a top-10 finish in China on the premier Tour two months later. Since then, the former National Team player has struggled with form.

“My season was good up till last month I felt like I wasn’t playing very well mainly because I was not hitting my driver well. But right now, after a couple of changes in my swing, I feel more comfortable off the tee and I am more confident,” said Hasegawa.

The 25-year-old Hasegawa has enjoyed travelling to new countries since coming through Asian Tour Qualifying School in January where he finished tied-11th. With one goal in mind, he heads to Chinese Taipei for the first time next week with hopes of displaying the same form he did at the start of the year.

“I don’t know what to expect since I’ve never been there but I am just excited to take up the challenge and play some good golf. I like playing on the Asian tour and have been enjoying travelling around and playing in new countries like India (Asian Tour) this week and then Taiwan next week. It is all a new experience for me.

I think the courses in Japan are narrower but the greens in Asia are more undulating and tougher to hit into. I only have one goal, to win the ADT Order of Merit, and a good finish in this event will help me achieve that,” said Hasegawa.

A host of Asian Tour winners will also add to the strength of the field including local talents Chan Shih-Chang and Lu Wei-Chih, Australian duo David Gleeson and Marcus Both, Thailand’s Chinnarat Phadungsil and Chapchai Nirat.

Since its inception as the richest event on the ADT in 2014, the Taifong open has been regarded as an important event for the region's bidding golfers to boost their rankings on the Order of Merit. 

The leading seven players on the ADT Order of Merit at the end of the season will earn playing rights on the premier Asian Tour for the 2019 season. Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) points are offered on all ADT events with the winner earning a total of six OWGR points while the top-six players and ties earn points on a sliding scale.

About Asian Development Tour

The Asian Development Tour was launched in 2010 with the aim of creating a career pathway for professional golfers in Asia. Sanctioned by the Asian Tour, the Asian Development Tour will ultimately create a new playing platform for emerging stars from across Asia and around the world. Through the Asian Tour Qualifying School, players will qualify for the Asian Development Tour and enjoy the opportunity to hone their games and talent through a secondary circuit in Asia. Designed in the same structure as the Web.com Tour in America and European Challenge Tour, the Asian Development Tour is a stepping stone to the Asian Tour and the exciting world of international golf. The Asian Development Tour has been structured to ensure the best opportunities for its members. The leading five players on the Asian Development Tour will earn coveted Asian Tour cards for the following season, ensuring a proper career pathway for aspiring professionals. All ADT events receive Official World Golf Ranking points.