Hend Targets British Open After True Thailand Classic Triumph.
Scott Hend is targeting qualification for the British Open 2016 event after claiming a tense one-shot victory in the True Thailand Classic on Sunday. Hend’s 18-under-par total was just enough for a second European PGA Tour title as home favourite Piya Wangarunporn came up short despite posting a superb 64 in sweltering conditions.
There was a sense of deja-vu for Hend as he teed up for the final round as he also led the same tournament at the 54-hole stage last year before falling away late on. He was determined to atone for that missed chance and he produced a string of fine birdies on his way to registering a solid 68, which saw him edge out clubhouse leader Swangarunporn.
The Australian is hoping the title will kick start his season and help him to secure automatic qualification for the Open this Summer. He added: “This is a great win and I would love to try and kick on now and get another win, try and qualify for the Open and also try and get into the match play and see if I can do anything against the top 50 in the world.”
The tournament at Black Mountain will also be memorable for Swangarunporn as he scorched his way to a course-record 63 on Sunday. He started six behind Hend but pitched in for an eagle-two on the par four 10th and sunk seven more birdie putts to give himself a shot of the title. However, Hend’s late birdie on the 17th meant he had to settle for a runner-up finish.
“Today was one of the best rounds I have ever played,” said the Thai. “Everything about the game was good and it all came together for me. It is a big day for my career and I hope to play more big tournaments like this one in the future.”