Mardan Mamat birdied his final five holes Thursday to shoot a 9-under-par 63 and take a two-stroke lead in the first round of the King’s Cup.
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The Singaporean veteran had 10 birdies and one bogey at the Singha Park Khon Kaen Golf Club. He leads Supakorn Utaipat and Chris Rodgers by two.
”I don’t know when was the last time I shot 9 under,” said Mamat, a three-time winner on the Asian Tour. ”I hit the ball very well and putted very well today especially. I holed a few putts which was the key of the round. I didn’t putt this well for a long time.”
Local hopes Thongchai Jaidee (68) and Thaworn Wiratchant (69) finished outside the top 10, but the 22-year-old Supakorn surprised many with his bogey-free round of 64.
”This is a long course which favors long drivers, said Supakorn, who turned pro last year. ”I just go for my driving and they are all on the fairways. I also putted very well.”
Rodgers started on the back nine and reeled off six birdies, including on the 16th, 17th and 18th.
”It’s been a long while since I’ve had a good first round,” Rodgers said.