Thaworn victorious

Thaworn victorious

LUANG PRABANG, LAOS : Veteran Thaworn Wiratchant fired a 67 and cruised to a comfortable eight-stroke victory at the inaugural Luang Prabang Laos Open yesterday.

Thaworn Wiratchant with the Luang Prabang Laos Open trophy.

Taking an eight-stroke lead into the final round, Thaworn made seven birdies against two bogeys to win on 21-under-par 267 at Luang Prabang Golf Club.

Jay Bayron of the Philippines closed with a 67 to finish second on a 13-under 275 while Thailand's Thayakorn Klongpha (71) came third on 279.

Thaworn, who received US$13,000, was thrilled to be the first ever winner of the title.

"I'm excited because the game of golf is new to this country," he said.

"You dont feel tired when you are playing well and winning."

The victory was Thaworn's third on the tour after wins at the Heritage Melaka Classic 2009 and the Singha E-San Open 2010.

Meanwhile, Bayron was frustrated that he could not catch the Thai golfer.

"It would have been a close event if Thaworn had not been here," he joked.

Bayron took home $8,900 while Thayakorn received $4,950.

The US$80,000 tournament was the first professional golf event in Laos and Dr. Khampheng Saysompheng, governor of Luang Prabang province, said the event's success would boost tourism in the region.

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