Tsai feels right at home in Faldo Series Shanghai Championship
Shanghai, China (July 19): Much-travelled Rebecca Tsai delivered a delightful virtuoso performance to score a runaway victory in the eighth Faldo Series Shanghai Championship.
Basking in the hot conditions, the Chinese Taipei-born teenager, whose family currently live in Shanghai, was in inspired form as she proved too strong for her mainland China hosts.
An accomplished opening four-under-par 68 put the 18-year-old firmly in the driving seat at Suzhou Taihu International Golf Club.
Showing no signs off complacency, Tsai added a second-round 70, which included four birdies to go alongside the six she snared on day one.
With a 36-hole aggregate of six-under 138, Tsai ended eight strokes clear of Shi Ziyi and Bao Zheng, the leading local lights who had a thrilling head-to-head duel in the Boys’ Under-18 category.
Although playing under the Chinese Taipei banner, Tsai has also spent spells in Los Angeles, Otago in New Zealand and Shanghai.
As the overall champion, Tsai has earned a return trip to China, where she will compete in the 10th anniversary Faldo Series Asia Grand Final, to be hosted by Sir Nick Faldo at Mission Hills China next March.
Also there will be Hong Jie [Boys’ Under-21 champion], Shi Ziyi [Boys’ Under-18 champion], Wang Zhidong [Boys’ Under-16 champion] and Tsai Ching-tseng [Girls’ Under-16 champion].
Shi booked his spot when he edged out Bao on the first hole of a sudden-death play-off after the duo had returned identical totals of 146.
Kudos, too, went to Feng Kai. At eight years of age he was the youngest player in the field and one of the youngest ever to line up in the Faldo Series.
At the prize-giving ceremony, Tao Yongjie, President of The Suzhou Golf Association, praised the host club for its promotion of junior golf and its contribution to developing the game.
Results from the Faldo Series Shanghai Championship, the fourth leg of the 2015-16 Faldo Series Asia season, counted for the World Amateur Golf Ranking and the China Golf Association Junior Ranking system.
Supported by The R&A and Mission Hills and endorsed by the Asian Tour and the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation, the 2015-16 Faldo Series Asia campaign stretches over 11 months and will include a minimum of 21 events in 17 countries including, for the first time, Australia.
Recognised as the only global amateur series for boys and girls, the Faldo Series was established in 1996, expanding to Asia in 2006.
Today, 40 Faldo Series tournaments take place in 30-plus countries worldwide, touching more than 7,000 golfers each year. Past winners include Tseng Ya-ni and Rory McIlroy, who took his tally of professional Major titles to four with his wins at last year’s Open Championship and US PGA Championship.
Faldo Series Shanghai Championship, leading final scores:
148 – Hong Jie (74-74)
157 – Zhou Xindi (77-80)
161 – Chen Zhao (82-79)
Boys’ Under 18:
146 – Shi Ziyi (74-72); Bao Zheng (73-73)
154 – Yuan Dan (78-76)
Boys’ Under 16:
149 – Wang Zhidong (71-78)
151 – Pan Qihao (78-73)
152 – Huang Shang (77-75)
138 – Rebecca Tsai (68-70)
150 – Wang Xiyue (77-74)
153 – Xu Yuqin (78-75)
149 – Tsai Ching-tseng (75-74)
150 – Deng Jingfan (76-74)
160 – Chen Yiwen (78-82)
For full scores and results from the Faldo Series Shanghai Championship please visit www.faldoseriesasia.info/tic/tmtic.cgi. You can also follow the Faldo Series on Facebook at www.facebook.com/faldoseries and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/faldoseries.