Seongnam, Korea, May 2: India's S Chikkarangappa S will continue his quest for a breakthrough victory on the Asian Tour when he tees off for The 38th GS Caltex Maekyung Open Golf Championship which starts on Thursday.
The talented 25-year-old arrived in the Land of the Morning Calm on the back of a rich vein of form, having claimed two victories on his domestic circuit and notched a solid top-10 finish on the Asian Tour to sit in current seventh position on the Habitat for Humanity Standings.
Chikka's game has matured considerably over the years. A joint runner-up outing at the Mauritius Open last November, along with his fine run so far this season, have strengthened his belief that a breakthrough is imminent.
He will feature in the 144-man field alongside defending champion Sanghyun Park of Korea, who is chasing for an unprecedented treble, in the KR₩1,200,000,000 (approx. US$1,067,000) event, which is celebrating its 38th edition this week.
Young Thai Phachara Khongwatmai, who turns 20 years old on Friday, plans to make his birthday week a memorable one as he looks to improve on his tied-12th place finish from 12 months ago at the fabled Namseoul Country Club.
Spaniard Javi Colomo endured a four-month layoff due to a shoulder injury before returning to competitive golf in Singapore earlier in January. Playing in his second start on Tour this season, Colomo is looking to get his game back on track with a fine performance in Korea.
Yikeun Chang of Korea is back seeking redemption in the event, where he had agonizingly missed out on his maiden Asian Tour win last year after being defeated by Park on the third play-off hole.
Other notable players include K.T. Kim of Korea, a two-time winner of the Maekyung Open, Thai duo Prom Meesawat and Danthai Boonma, as well as Australian Jason Norris and Siddikur Rahman of Bangladesh.
The 38th GS Caltex Maekyung Open Golf Championship is the first of the three Asian Tour events to be played in Korea this season. It has been dominated by Koreans since 2005. American Mark Calcavecchia was the last foreigner to win the tournament in 2004.
Source: Asian Tour