Published on November 30, 2021

The Inaugural Laguna Phuket Championship Tees Off on Thursday

PHUKET-THAILAND- A floating event branded cube on a lake at the Asian Tour’s Laguna Phuket Championship 2021 at Laguna Golf Phuket, December 2-5, 2021. Picture by Paul Lakatos/Asian Tour.

The inaugural Laguna Phuket Championship marks the second event of the Asian Tour Phuket Series. The Asian Tour ended a 20-month hiatus caused by the COVID-19 pandemic when it resumed its 2020/21 season at the Blue Canyon Phuket Championship last week.


Like the Blue Canyon Phuket Championship, the Laguna Phuket Championship also offers a prize purse of US$1 million where the winner takes home a cheque of US$180,000.


Laguna Golf Phuket, revamped and revitalized by architect Paul Jansen in 2014, had previously hosted the Laguna Phuket Open on the Asian Development Tour from 2017 to 2019. The 2017 edition was made special by Thailand’s Suttijet Kooratanapisan, who recorded the first ever 59 on the ADT and Asian Tour in the final round.


A talented field of 144 players from 25 countries, including five Order of Merit champions and 40 Tour champions, are set to compete in the event.


Players from Jordan and Saudi Arabia, who made their Asian Tour debut last week, will seek to cap a memorable two-week swing in Phuket with good finishes at the Laguna Phuket Championship.


Reigning Order of Merit champion Jazz Janewattananond will be looking to redeem himself after uncharacteristically missing the halfway cut last week. Place seventh on the current Order of Merit, Jazz will be vying to become the first player to successfully retain the Merit crown in back-to-back seasons on Tour.


Current Order of Merit leader Wade Ormsby of Australia, who won the season-opening Hong Kong Open for his third Asian Tour title in 2020, will be looking to end his year on a high with a good showing this week. He came in tied-23rd last week to retain his lead on the Merit rankings.


Scott Hend, the first Australian to lift the Order of Merit crown in 2016, will be in search for his 11th title on Tour after enjoying a top-five result last week. Three of his 10 victories came in Thailand.


Korean sensation Joohyung Kim, who won the 2019 Panasonic Open India in only his sixth start on the Asian Tour, will aim to go one better this week for his second title on Tour.  The 19-year-old Kim was crowned the Order of Merit champion on his domestic Tour earlier this month and had come in runner-up last week thanks to a closing 66.

Despite missing out on his second Asian Tour victory last week, Sadom Kaewkanjana of Thailand is keeping his head high as he continues to enjoy a solid run where he has yet to shoot over par in his last 20 competitive rounds.


Sadom claimed his fourth victory in two months when he won the Singha Classic on his domestic Tour mid-November. He has not finished outside of the top-10 in his last nine professional starts. His joint runner-up finish last week saw him jump to 251st place on the OWGR and eighth place on the Asian Tour Order of Merit.


Thai Amateur Ratchanon Chantananuwat enjoyed a memorable debut last week where he became the third youngest player, at the age of 14 years old, to make the halfway cut on the Asian Tour. Ratchanon, who goes by the nickname TK, impressed with a solid tied-15 place finish last week, thanks to weekend rounds of 68 and 65.


Malaysia’s Ben Leong who finished 23rd last week will also feature in the field this week together with Nicholas Fung who finished in joint 36th position. The Green brothers, Gavin and Galven who missed the cut will be looking to have a better outing this week.


The Order of Merit race continues in Phuket as players vie to finish inside top-30 on the final Merit rankings to qualify for the lucrative US$5 million Saudi International, which will be the season-opener for the Asian Tour’s 2022 season.