Thongchai Jaidee became a world champion after winning a sudden death play-off against South Africa's Charl Schwartzel in the World Sand Golf Championship at the Al Ghazal Golf Clubin Abu Dhabi. 'I putted really well today - much better than in Dubai last week,' said Thongchai after pocketing the first prize of US$10,000. 'I wish I could play on browns all the time. I like the heat here too as I am used to it. This is a fantastic event and it feels very good to be a world champion.' In winning the 'world' crown Jaidee also defeated experienced players such as Colin Montgomerie, Miguel Angel Jimenez and Paul McGinley in the special event that saw 23 European Tour players compete on a course made entirely out of sand. The event provides for a somewhat relaxing challenge for the tour professionals and is ideally sandwiched between the Dubai Desert Classic and the Qatar Masters. The main difference between the par-71, 6,700-yard course at Al Ghazal and a normal course are 'browns' instead of greens and the use of an astroturf mat from which the golfers play their second shots on fairways sculpted from sand. Thongchai's six-under-par 65 included a run of four birdies in a row on the front nine and looked to be good enough for victory until Schwartzel holed a birdie putt on the 18th brown to set up a play-off. Thongchai then holed a putt from a similar length on the second play-off hole to win the championship. The talented Thai played in the first staging of the event last year, and took full advantage of the experience to post his winning score. 'It's easier the second time around as I got the pace of the browns straight away,' said the 35-year-old Asian number one. Also in the field was China's Zhang Lianwei, who finished on three-over-par 74.