Singapore (September 1): Hailey Loh will resume her rivalry with Linette Chua Wen Ting in the 13th Faldo Series Singapore Championship.
A fortnight after narrowly defeating Chua in a gripping finale to the Singapore National Amateur Championship, Loh will again face-off with her compatriot in the sixth leg of the 2018-19 Faldo Series Asia season.
Still on a high following the most important success of her fledgling career, in-form Loh is now aiming to add another title to her collection at the National Service Resort & Country Club’s (NSRCC) Kranji Sanctuary Golf Course (September 3-5).
Since finishing fourth in the Girls’ Under-16 category at last year’s Faldo Series Singapore Championship, Loh’s game has improved in leaps and bounds to the point that she is now second among Singaporean females in The R&A’s World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR).
Such has been her consistency that she was selected to represent Singapore in May’s Asia-Pacific Amateur Ladies Golf Team Championship for the Queen Sirikit Cup after which she finished runner-up in the Singapore Junior Championship.
Her most notable performance, though, came in the Singapore National Amateur Championship. After placing second in the 36-hole stroke play segment at Laguna National Golf & Country Club, Loh made it through to the match play final where she edged out Chua on the final hole.
As well as battling for glory in the Girls’ Under-21 division at Kranji Sanctuary next week, Loh and Chua will also be eyeing overall honours as they seek to qualify for the 13th Faldo Series Asia Grand Final at Laguna Lăng Cô in Danang, Vietnam, to be hosted by Sir Nick Faldo in March, 2019.
Among the boys, Singapore Elite Squad member Lucius Toh and Emerson Boon, runner-up in last year’s Faldo Series Singapore Championship, are expected to feature prominently.
Toh, who has a handicap index of +3.6, has risen to 854th in the WAGR following a succession of high finishes in the past three months, including second place in the Johor Amateur Open, third in the Perak Amateur Open and fourth in the Warren-MST Am Open.
Meanwhile, Boon, playing at his home club, will be looking to go one better than last year when he was pipped in a sudden-death play-off by Callista Chen.
Also out to make a good impression are the national Development Squad quartet of Sean Lee, Tommy Tan, Justin Kuk and Andre Chong.
The 2018-19 Faldo Series Asia season is supported by The R&A and endorsed by the Asian Tour and the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation. The International Junior Golf Academy is a partner of the Faldo Series.
As well as two events in China, India and Thailand, championships are being staged in Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Chinese-Taipei, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore and Vietnam.
Recognised as the only global amateur series for boys and girls, the Faldo Series was established in 1996, expanding to Asia in 2006.
Today, 40 Faldo Series tournaments take place in 30-plus countries worldwide, touching more than 7,000 golfers each year. Past champions include Tseng Ya-ni and Rory McIlroy, both multiple Major winners, while Thidapa Suwannapura (2010 Faldo Series Asia Grand Final Girls’ champion) and Nasa Hataoka (2016 Faldo Series Asia Grand Final Girls’ champion) have both won on the LPGA Tour this year.