The battle for honours is heating up as the Vios Cup gets underway this Tuesday at the scenic and challenging Templer Park Country Club in Rawang, near here. Leading the field is Ervin Chang who is No 1 on the Toyota Tour’s Order of Merit with earnings of RM56,808 so far.

The 24-year-old Kajang lad displayed a remarkable all-round game on his way to winning the Mirai Cup at the Sarawak Golf Club in May, before finishing sixth at the Hilux Cup in Kota Kinabalu. In the opening round which was the Tun Ahmad Sarji Trophy at Saujana in March, Ervin ended up joint second to Paul San.

Ervin rates his chances quite high at the Vios Cup as he’s currently in good form and he’s played at TPCC many times. “But the Vios Cup will be the first time I am playing there as a professional. It is a good course with challenging slopes around the greens, which make it crucial to chip and pitch with precision. I like that golf course; I played well the last time when the ADT event was held there.”

Danny Chia, lying second on the Order of Merit will be a force to contend with, going by his dramatic and emotional victory at the Tun Ahmad Sarji Trophy. It was his first win in over five years.

R. Nachimuthu.

Added Ervin: “Danny will definitely be among the early favourites, including Khor Kheng Hwai, Galven Gren, Paul and home favourite R. Nachimuthu.”

Danny, fresh from the Seniors Tour events in Japan, is looking forward to competing at TPCC. “I like the course and have many good memories there,” he said, referring to the 2015 Panasonic Tournament of Champions event that he won by a massive eight strokes.

While the Hilux Cup champion Nicholas Fung and fellow Sabahan will not be around, there is enough talent with the likes of youngsters Galven, Shahriffuddin Ariffin, Daniel Faidz and Daeng Abdul Rahman to provide added excitement. Nicholas and Ben will be competing in the Asian Tour’s Kolon Korea Open which clashes with the Vios Cup.

Danny Chia.

In the Ladies category, Aretha Pan is the firm favourite at TPCC. She is the current OOM leader having amassed RM27,020 after winning at the Tun Ahmad Sarji and finishing an incredible runner-up placing in the men’s category at the Hilux Cup.

Lying a distance second in the OOM is Jocelyn Chee. The other pros contending are Nur Durriyah Binti Damian, Genevieve Ling and Geraldine Wong. The MGA amateur entries include Amalia Shahzan, Liyana Azizan Durisic and Winning Ng Yu Xuan.

Host club Templer Park CC have offered a one-year club membership to the first professionals who score a hole-in-one at all the four Par 3s.

The men’s purse for the Vios Cup is RM180,000 and an additional RM30,000 for the ladies. Golf fans can follow the scores live on the myGolf2u app.

The three-day tournament is the fourth leg on the Toyota Tour.

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