Thailand’s strong presence at the top of the leaderboard in the Professional Golf of Malaysia (PGM) Tour’s RM180,000 Port Dickson Championship at Port Dickson Golf Club remained intact after the third round today. There was a change in who topped the standings though, where Natthapong Niyomchon took over from his compatriot Nirun Sae-Ueng, with the Philippines’ Mike Bibat in second place, Nattawat Suvajanakorn third and Nirun fourth.
Natthapong shot an impressive six-under-par 65 to open up a two-stroke lead with one more round to go. He was 12-under 201 for the tournament, with Bibat, who was joint second after the second day with today’s leader, carded a 67. Nattawat came back with a 66 for his nine-under 204 total in third place, while fourth-spot Nirun had a 70 for his 205.
Kenneth De Silva was the top-placed Malaysian, having registered a 68 to climb up to fifth on five-under 208.
Another shot back was Thailand’s Chanat Sakulpolphaisan (70) and the Malaysian quartet of Mohd Azman Basharudin (69), Sukree Othman (69) and Muhammad Wafiyuddin Abd Manaf (72), tied for sixth place another stroke adrift on 209.
Natthapong’s six-under round was marked by seven birdies and a bogey at the 17th hole. It was determined effort and one that could yet see the Thailand player walk away from the resort town with the title tucked away nicely in his bag.
Nirun’s round had three bogeys in it and it was the eagle-three at the par-5 last hole that brought him to par.
De Silva, who has already on the PGM tour this season, played himself into contention with a round that had six birdies, countered by a three bogeys.
“I could have done better,” said De Silva. “But I am happy to be in with an outside chance going into the last round, although I know it will take a very, very good effort to win here.I putted well today and I am feeling like I am coming back to normal game which is good. But anyway I will do my besttomorrow and see where it all ends up.”
Leading Third Round Scores
201 – Natthapong Niyomchon (Tha) 66 70 65
203 – Mike Bibat (Phi) 68 68 67
204 – Nattawat Suvajanakorn (Tha) 69 69 66
205 – Nirun Sae-Ueng (Tha) 67 68 70
208 – Kenneth De Silva (Mas) 69 71 68