[Indonesia] Nov 2 (ANI): Young Thai talent Nitithorn Thippong hopes to put up a strong show at the penultimate US$100,000 Combiphar Players Championship in his bid to inch closer to the top of the rankings of the Asian Development Tour (ADT) Order of Merit.
Nitithorn, 22, trails Merit leader Miguel Carballo of Argentina by about US$9,103 in the second place. He will get a chance to boost his ranking when he takes the centre stage at the New Kuta Golf in Bali from November 6 to 9.
With Carballo opting not to play in the event which offers a winner's prize purse of US$17,500, Nitithorn will take aim at narrowing his gap on the money list.
He had previously held the top spot for 13 weeks in a row after his maiden win in May. American duo Han Lee and Sam Gillis, as well as Itthipat Buranatanyarat of Thailand, placed third, fourth and fifth respectively on the Order of Merit, also have a slight chance of overtaking the Merit lead should they emerge victorious in the event next week.
They will be rubbing shoulders with a strong field of 144 players from 19 countries in the third edition of the tournament. It is also the 21st leg of the 2018 Asian Development Tour schedule.
Wolmer Murillo of Venezuela, who triumphed in a five-way playoff for his breakthrough victory last year, will also return to defend his title against a strong line-up of players gathered for the ADT event.
"I have been playing great so far on this season. I am not as stressed as I was the last two years. I just want to have fun and play my best. The results have shown that my hard work is paying off. I will keep doing the same for the last two events," said the 22-year-old Nitithorn, who needs at least a runner-up finish to regain the top spot on the Order of Merit. (ANI)