Low Khai Jei of Malaysia during the round one of the 100 Plus Malaysia Junior Open Golf Championship at Saujana Golf & Country Club event starts from September 19 to 21, 2012. PHOTO BY: KHALID REDZA

 

First round leaders Low Khai Jei of Malaysia and Princess Mary Superal of the Philippines took a step closer to clinching the prestigious 100PLUS Malaysia Junior Open boys’ and girls’ golf titles with sub-par rounds  at the Saujana Golf and Country Club.

Khai Jei, who suffered heartache last year when a missed birdie putt cost him the title, shot a superb three-under 69 for a two-day total of four-under 140 to lead Paul San by four strokes.

Debutant Mary, who had an even par 72 yesterday, increased her lead to nine strokes when she shot two-under today. Malaysia’s Genevieve Ling is second on 153.

“I learnt from my mistake last year and believe I can close out the tournament tomorrow,” said a confident Khai Jei, who had a birdie on the 18th today to go along with birdies on the 12th and 13th holes in a bogey free round.

“I will not take anything for granted. I have to stay focus and play my own game and not worry about anyone else.”

If Khai Jei wins the title, he will be the fourth Malaysian after Muhammad Azry (2011), Gavin Kyle Green (2009) and Akhmal Tarmizi Nazari (2007) to claim the crown.

Mary, who is hoping to make it a hattrick of victories for the Philippines following wins by Sarah Ababa (2010) and Dottie Ardina (2011), missed out on a bigger lead as she failed to convert five birdie putts.

“Yes, it could have been better but I’m still delighted with the score and the lead,” said Mary, who was given the name Princess as a good luck charm following her premature birth.

Meanwhile Sarafina Vinota Seretharan, who recently made headlines when she secured a berth in the Sime Darby LPGA tournament from Oct 11-14 at the Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club (KLGCC), failed to sparkle.

The 16-year-old has an improved round when she carded four-over 76, and is now 12-over 156 for the tournament. She is tied fourth with fellow Malaysian Asha Lakshme.

“I still have a lot of aspects to cover, for instance my fitness,” said the 5-handicapper, whose father Seretharan Krishnan is her coach.