The Indian Golfers at the 41st GS Caltex Maekyung Open ended their campaign on a disappointing note after a strong presence on the leader board for the first three days.
On Sunday, Viraj Madappa and Khalin Joshi, who were lying tied fifth, and Honey Baisoya, who was tied seventh, crumbled and dropped down. Local star Bio Kim (72) won the title by two shots over fellow Korean Mingyu Cho (70). There were 13 Koreans in the Top-15. Madappa, who was tied for the fifth overnight, had an early double bogey on second, further bogeys on 9 and 10 and closed with two more on 16 and 18.
The three birdies in between just did not give him any room to make a run. Joshi had four bogeys in the first seven holes, two more at the start of the back nine and a further two more on 16 and 18, while Honey Baisoya had four bogeys in the first five holes and two on 16 and 18, just like Madappa and Joshi. In short, it was mayhem and they gave themselves no chances. Madappa still managed to Hang in for tied 10th, but it must have been a big disappointment after seeming to contend for the middle two days.
Baisoya finished tied 19th and Joshi was 33rd. Karandeep Kochhar (71) was T-38, S Chikkarangappa (74) was T-43 as was Veer Ahlawat (74). Gaganjeet Bhullar (78) was T-68. As the local Korean contingent dominated the event Bio Kim finally added another important Trophy to his impressive collection of titles when he claimed the Maekyung Open. It was his first Asian Tour win. A favorite coming into the week thanks to a purple patch that stretches back to the end of last year, they carded a battling final round one-over-par 72 to win on nine-under by two from Korean Mingyu Cho, who shot a 70 , on a day when organizers estimated 8,000 fans attended.
Korean Kyong Jun Moon, Winner of this event in 2015, finished third after shooting a 67. Last season’s Asian Tour Order of Merit Winner Joohyung Kim from Korea, closed with a 70 to end in joint fifth place. It is the second time Bio Kim has won the tournament – which is one of the jewels in the crown of the tournament golf in Korea, along with the Korea Open – although when he triumphed in 2012, it was not part of the Asian Tour. The 31-year-old Bio Kim said, “It took all of me to win today. Namseoul Country Club is very difficult, and a lot of good players were chasing me.” As I have been doing all week, and all year, I tried to stay in the present, clear my mind and not to think about things too much, like my four-shot lead on the back nine. “
He earned a check for USD 255,536. A professional since 2009 he only became a member of the Asian Tour after graduating from the Qualifying School in 2020, where he tied the fifth, just before the Pandemic hit. He played on the PGA Tour and Korn Ferry Tour early in his career before concentrating on competing in Korea, where he has been victorious on seven occasions, including this week. The Asian Tour heads to Japan next week for the Asia Pacific Open Golf Championship Diamond Cup at Oarai Golf Club, from May 12-15.