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Que stays in contention

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PHILIP FONG/Agence France-Presse ANGELO Que stays in the hunt in the Singapore International, trailing Thai leader Rattanon Wannasrichan by four shots going into the weekend.

Angelo Que charged back with a last-hole birdie to card a 71 that not only earned him a safe passage to the weekend play of the Singapore International but also kept him in the title hunt halfway through the $1 million event at the Tanah Merah Country Club yesterday.

Que played pressure-free despite a bogey-bogey start, flouting the challenges that lurked on every corner of the Tampines course and the men in front of him, coming through with five birdies to negate a double bogey on No. 11 on his way to a 36-35 in tough conditions.

And he was as much surprised to move from joint ninth to a share of fourth despite lack of competitive play the last six weeks, still four strokes behind Rattanon Wannasrichan who shot a 66 for 144.

Coming off a gutsy even-par effort in windy condition in the first round Thursday, Que stumbled in a late afternoon start in the second round.

He dropped strokes in the first two holes before snapping a five-hole par run with a birdie on No. 7.

Que hit two more birdies linking both nines to get to one-under overall, reeled back with a double bogey on the 11th but quickly fought back with a birdie on the next.

After a run of pars, the three-time Asian Tour winner used his power and solid iron play to birdie the par-5 18th.
He’s tied for fourth with flightmate Paul Peterson of the United States, who wavered with a 73, at 140 heading to the last 36 holes of the $1 million event .

The Singapore International serves as prelude to next week’s Singapore Open at Sentosa’s Serapong course.

Earlier, Wannasrichan holed out with an eagle on No. 18 to shoot a six-under 66 and took charge with a 139, two strokes ahead of fellow Thai Ratchanon Chantananuwat and erstwhile leader Khalin Joshi of India.

Wannasrichan razed the frontside with four birdies, including the last three then broke a birdie-bogey game at the back with an eagle on the par-5 closing hole. His 32-34 card lifted him from joint 20th to the solo lead at five-under overall.

But focus will surely be trained on Chantananuwat, a 14-year-old amateur who bounced back from a disastrous 75 with his own version of a 66 that rallied him from a share of 45th to joint second with Joshi at 141.

Chantananuwat was playing in his first pro tournament overseas after finishing tied for 15th in the Blue Canyon Championship and sharing 30th place in the Laguna Phuket Championship.

The two events in Thailand last November and December marked the Asian Tour restart after a 20-month hiatus due to pandemic,.
The amateur sensation hit two birdies at the back then gunned down two more at the front for a 32 he spiked with an eagle on the par-5 No. 8.

Joshi, who sizzled with a 67 in the wind Thursday, slowed down with a 74 on a three-birdie, five-bogey game to drop to a share of second.

Thai Jazz Janewattananond fumbled with a 73 after a 71 as he dropped to sixth at 144 while young Korean Kim Joo Hyung also stumbled with a one-over card for a 145 for a share of seventh with India’s Ajeetesh Sandhu, who slipped with a 75.

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