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Champion Jazz swings to more success

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Thailand young gun Jazz Janewattananond keeps building on his brilliant early-season win at the SMBC Singapore Open.

Jazz posted a two-stroke victory in the joint-sanctioned Asian Tour/Japan Tour event at Sentosa Golf Club in January.

In another co-sanctioned event at the weekend he finished in fourth place to further extend his lead in the Asian Tour Order of Merit.

The 23 year old picked up a cheque for US$64,227 at the Panasonic Open Golf Championship to take his season’s earnings to US$833,524 from 13 events.

In so doing, he increased his advantage to more than US$300,000 over second-placed Scott Hend of Australia, who missed the halfway cut at the Higashi Hirono Golf Club, near Kobe, Japan.

Jazz has claimed two victories and registered six top-10 finishes so far this season and he added to those achievements by winning the 2018/19 Panansonic Swing with his fourth-place finish.

Starting the week in third place on the rankings, Jazz needed at least a tied fourth-place result to top the Panasonic Swing after countrymen Poom Saksansin and Panuphol Pittayarat, previously ranked first and second respectively, failed to make the weekend rounds.

Jazz battled with a cold putter on the final day but a crucial birdie on the 17th hole saw him close with a one-under-par 71 to take fourth spot, eight shots back of winner Toshinori Muto of Japan.

The young Thai took home a bonus prize of US$70,000 after winning the second edition of the Panasonic Swing series with a total of 3,021 points from four of the five selected events.

“It’s an honour to win the Panasonic Swing. I didn’t even know I had a chance to win until the last minute,” said Jazz.

“The game is almost back on track. I wanted to finish better but I just couldn’t get the ball in the hole. You can’t really force the win if you are not putting well but overall, I’m happy with my result. A couple of big events coming up for me so this result will definitely help.”

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