Maybank Championship Malaysia 2016
Round 4 - Marcus Fraser wins again after six years
February 22, 2016
Marcus Fraser of Australia savoured his first win in nearly six years on Sunday after overnight leader Lee Soo-Min crumbled down the homestretch to hand him the inaugural Maybank Championship Malaysia.
The win is the third European Tour title for Fraser, who carded a bogey-free three-under-par 68, and ends a drought that saw him go 119 events without a victory.
"It's an absolute dream come true," said the ecstatic Fraser, who takes home a victor's purse of $500,000.
"It's been six years since I last won a golf tournament and I've had a lot of chances and completely stuffed it up."
He finished at 15-under, two strokes ahead of South Korea's Lee and Miguel Tabuena of the Philippines in the tournament, which is co-sponsored by the European and Asian tours.
The final round was a two-horse race between overnight leader Lee, a South Korean youngster with K-pop looks, and the 37-year-old Aussie.
Starting Sunday with a three-stroke advantage over Fraser, Lee fought off the persistent Australian for most of the round as the playing partners matched fine iron shots on the par-71 Royal Selangor Golf Club.
But the relatively inexperienced Lee, who is just 22 and was making just his second European Tour start, opened the door on the par-four 16th with a double-bogey that allowed Fraser to draw level.
After they both parred the short 17th, Lee got into trouble again on the par-four closing hole, leaving Fraser with a par putt to win it.
"I wasn't sure how I actually held on to the putter on that last one. I was pretty nervous and I could see the putter head shaking," Fraser said.
But he bent it in for the win, leaving Lee to mop up with a double-bogey.
Lee, who shot a dazzling third-round 64 on Saturday, later admitted he wilted under the pressure of closing out the tournament. He finished Sunday with a two-over 73.
But it was the second recent strong performance by the South Korean, who finished tied for third in the Hong Kong Open in October.
Nathan Holman, a 24-year-old from Melbourne who won the Australian PGA title in December, had led the tournament the first two days.
But he gave up the lead late in the third round and struggled to find a rhythm Sunday, posting a one-over 72 to finish in eighth place.
England's world number 13 Danny Willett had been considered the favourite in Malaysia after winning the Dubai Desert Classic two weeks ago, but played himself out of contention with weekend rounds of 73 and 75.
The tournament is the successor to the long-running Malaysian Open, which has been discontinued due to a sponsorship realignment.
Round 3 - Lee Soo-min moves three clear
February 21, 2016
South Korea's Lee Soo-min put on a sizzling display with his irons to top the Maybank Championship Malaysia leaderboard on Saturday, opening a three-shot lead over closest rival Marcus Fraser after the third round.
Lee fired home nine birdies, including four in a row on the back nine, for a 7-under 64 to move to a total of 15-under 198 at Royal Selangor Golf Club.
Fraser had a 66 to be outright second, a stroke ahead of Australian compatriot and second-round leader Nathan Holman, who struggled with four birdies and a double bogey en route to a 73.
Lee, ranked 221 in the world, last won a title at the Gunsan CC Open on the Korean Tour last year.
''I had a good feeling this week because I like this course,'' Lee said. ''I hit many important iron shots and gained some confidence on the greens. I am a bit nervous thinking of the final round but I will try my best. This weekend will be very good for my golf life.''
Fraser is chasing his first title on the Asian and European Tour in six years.
''Probably somewhere round the 18-under mark will win it, depending on what the leader does tomorrow,'' Fraser said. ''There are a few guys stacked in behind him, so we'll see what the final day brings.''
The trio of Masahiro Kawamura, Jorge Campillo and Miguel Tabuena trail Lee by five shots in a tie for fourth.
Tabuena, who won the Philippine Open last year intends to use his success on home soil as platform for a grandstand finish.
''Winning against the best in Asia really boosted my confidence. It showed that that I can compete against the finest and hopefully I can make some clutch putts tomorrow to win,'' Tabuena said.
Malaysian Open champion Thongchai Jaidee was struck by illness and pulled out of the tournament, which is co-sanctioned by the Asian and European Tours.
Round 2 - Nathan Holman two clear at halfway
February 20, 2016
Australia's Nathan Holman shot a 6-under 65 on Friday to take a two-stroke lead after the second round of the Maybank Championship Malaysia at the Royal Selangor Golf Club.
Holman, who had an opening round of 64, had seven birdies to reach 13-under at the halfway mark. Richard Bland of England also shot 65 on Friday to stay within two shots of the lead.
England's Danny Willett was among a group of golfers trailing Holman by five shots.
''I am enjoying the lead,'' Holman said. ''It is why we play the game, to get ourselves in front and with a chance of winning big tournaments. I'd like to be even further ahead if I could.''
Bland, whose only title came at the Challenge Tour Grand Final in 2001, attributed a change in driver to his strong showing.
''It has added 15 yards to my drives,'' he said. ''When you got a shorter club in your hand, you can be a bit more aggressive. I am pleased with my round, to get two rounds without dropping a shot takes some doing. Nathan's playing well, so I'm going to have to keep making birdies just to keep up.''
The inaugural tournament, co-sanctioned by the Asian and European Tour and offering $3 million in prize money, was also highlighted by Casey O'Toole's 193-yard hole-in-one on the 12th.
''I didn't see it go in, but when I heard the yells I realized what had happened,'' he said. ''It's my first in competition. I've had four or five in practice, so this is the first that really counts.''
Martin Kaymer, whose 73 left him at 2-over, was among those who missed the cut.
Round 1 - Nathan Holman leads with opening 64
February 19, 2016
Nathan Holman of Australia shot a 7-under 64 to take a one-stroke lead Thursday after the opening round of the inaugural Maybank Championship Malaysia at the Royal Selangor Golf Club.
England's Danny Willett and Angelo Que of the Philippines were among a group of players one shot back at 65.
Holman had seven birdies, including four on the back nine. He finished his bogey-free round with a birdie on the final hole.
''I'm really happy with 7-under, because you get in the rough sometimes and it can be difficult, especially under these weather conditions,'' Holman said. ''But every aspect of my game has been heading in the right direction and I'm looking forward to the next three days.''
Scorching temperatures that reached 34C (93F) failed to dampen the quality of golf at the co-sanctioned Asian and European Tour event, which offers $3 million in prize money. Que's bogey on the 16th hole denied him a chance to share the lead.
''This week I am focused on what I need to do on the course to stay in the game,'' he said. ''I played well a lot in Malaysia in the past 14 years and today I holed a lot of putts which is what you need to do in a tournament.''
Malaysia's Shaaban Hussin had three birdies and an eagle after 12 holes, but faded with three bogeys in the final five holes to finish with a 67.
Louis Oosthuizen also shot a 67, while Martin Kaymer had a 71.