RATTANON TAKES CHARGE AT AB BANK BANGLADESH OPEN

Rattanon Wannasrichan of Thailand

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Dhaka, May 9: Baby-faced Rattanon Wannasrichan of Thailand rode on a hot putter to sign for a solid opening round of six-under-par 65, seizing the clubhouse lead by one shot at the weather-disrupted AB Bank Bangladesh Open on Wednesday.

The 22-year-old Rattanon, who enjoyed a top-five result in the last edition, got his campaign off to a flying start after firing seven birdies against a bogey to take his place atop the leaderboard in the US$300,000 Asian Tour event.

Indian stalwart M Dharma and Tour rookie Jack Harrison of England posted matching 66s to share second place while Asian Development Tour (ADT) graduate John Catlin of the United States settled two shots off the pace in fourth following a 67 at the Kurmitola Golf Club.

Play was earlier suspended at 12.17pm local time due to lightning threats before resuming four hours later. All 72 players in the afternoon session will return to complete their opening rounds at 6.20am on Thursday with the second round slated to start at approximately 8.00am.

American Berry Henson, highest-ranked player in ninth place on the Asian Tour Habitat for Humanity Standings, grabbed a share of seventh place following a 69 while local hero Siddikur Rahman carded a 72 to tie in 58th position.

Did you know?

  • Rattanon Wannasrichan claimed a wire-to-wire victory at the Thailand Open for his first Asian Tour title 12 months ago. He is also a one-time winner on the ADT in 2015.
  • The 22-year-old Thai sits in a current 20th position on the Asian Tour Habitat for Humanity Standings, thanks to two top-five finishes in Myanmar and Japan.
  • Rattanon hit six fairways and missed six greens in regulation but needed only 23 putts around the greens to cap a solid round of 65. His highlight of the day came on the par-five 14th hole where he chipped it in from 20 yards to save par.
  • Rattanon enjoyed a tied-fourth place finish at the Bangladesh Open last year.
  • M Dharma is a two-time winner on his domestic circuit. The 31-year-old, who hails from Bengaluru, turned professional in 2005.
  • Dharma is making his third appearance at the AB Bank Bangladesh Open this week. He enjoyed a tied-seventh place finish when he played the ADT season-opener, also at the Kurmitola Golf Club, in January.
  • Jack Harrison came through the Asian Tour Qualifying School earlier in January. It was his second attempt since 2013. The 27-year-old, who turned professional in 2011, finished tied-15th in the 90-hole tournament to secure his Asian Tour card for the 2018 season.
  • John Catlin needed only 23 putts around the greens today. He missed only two fairways in his commendable round of 67.
  • Catlin is a proud graduate of the ADT. He ended the 2017 season in third place on the final Order of Merit and secured his playing rights on the Asian Tour for the 2018 season. He is a two-time winner on the secondary circuit.
  • Catlin has notched four top-10 finishes in five starts on the ADT this season, including a tied-eighth place finish at the Kurmitola Golf Club two weeks ago. He sits in second place on the latest ADT Order of Merit.
  • Catlin secured his first ever top-10 result on the Asian Tour after finishing in eighth place on his own at The 37th GS Caltex Maekyung Open Golf Championship in Korea last week.