Ever wondered how hard it is for Europeans to play in Asia? Well, consider the Asian Tour Q School which ended on Saturday and wonder how it was that only seven of the 16 players who qualified for the last three rounds won their Tour Cards.
The relentless heat over 30 degrees centigrade, the humidity or the heavily-knapped greens that are so different from anything in Europe – it all adds up to a tough assignment for Euro players to succeed at Q School or any other tournament in Asia.
So hats off to England’s Ally Mellor who finished second (and only after losing a playoff) to Japan’s Daisuke Maruyama. Both players had final round 68s and Mellor lost the chance of the title on the second playoff hole.
The Englishman who represents Nizels Golf & Leisure Club in Kent only turned professional in 2004, but walked away pleased with his overall performance in the last two weeks.
“I’ve been playing here since the First Stage last week so I am happy with how I competed at the Qualifying School. I’m a bit gutted to lose in the play-off but this is still a good performance overall,” he said.
James Kamte of South Africa – a well-known face on the European Tour – finished fourth and no less than 11 Australians also won Cards.
Just the top 40 golfers out of the original field of 200 received full exemption to the 2009 Asian Tour, but only six other Europeans joined Mellor with that distinction. They are Chris Roake (Scotland) 12th=, Emanuel Canonica (Italy) & John Parry (England) 19th=, Wilhelm Schauman (Sweden) & Andrew Marshall (England) 26th=.