Clearwater Bay Open

Hacked off: Jason Hak dodges questions after final round failure ruins chance of victory on PGA Tour China Series

The 22-year-old blames a headache for being unable to explain his one-under-par final round at the Pingan Bank Open on Sunday which scuppered his chances of a maiden win as a professional

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 18 September, 2016, 8:18pm
UPDATED : Monday, 26 September, 2016, 12:57pm

Jason Hak Shun-yat’s final round frailties again came to the fore on Sunday as the Hong Kong golfer failed to take advantage of seemingly advantageous scoring conditions to miss out on a maiden win at the PGA Tour China Series’ Pingan Bank Open.

Hak held one shot advantages after the first three rounds at Topwin Golf and Country Club in Beijing, but failed to fire during his fourth round when it mattered and the 22-year-old struggled to a one-under-par 71 to slip four shots off the pace and down to fourth.

That still meant a third top 10 finish in as many weeks on the PGA Tour China Series, but questions need to be asked as Hak again failed to convert promising positions into victory having led for a total of six rounds this season without success.

Those questions would have been asked, but Hak refused to speak to the media following his round, insisting he had a headache.

His shortcomings were highlighted as eventual winner Charlie Saxon from America blazed six birdies in a flawless six-under-par 66 to win by one stroke from China’s Zhang Xinjun, with the pair playing in the final group alongside Hak.

Zhang also came from behind to overtake Hak with his own bogey-free round of 67, as did South Korea’s Cho Rak-hyun who carded eight birdies in a seven-under 65 to claim third.

Off the pace: Hong Kong’s Jason Hak suffers last day fade-out in PGA Tour China Series event

“This is by far the biggest win I’ve ever had,” said Saxon, who moved up to second place on the order of merit after posting four previous top 10 finishes this year having earned his card for the season through qualifying.

“I feel great. Whenever you have a chance to win and you’re able to capitalise on that and deal with the pressure and the nerves that go with that, it’s obviously very rewarding.”

This season, Hak has led after the second round of the Ping An Private Bank Wanda Open, the first and second rounds of the Yulongwan Yunnan Open and now also the first three rounds this week in Beijing.

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The next event on the PGA Tour China Series is the Clearwater Bay Open in Hong Kong in November, which is the start of a run of four events at the end of this year’s calender.

The top-five on the order of merit from the PGA Tour China Series earn membership for the following season on the Tour, which is the development circuit sitting below the main PGA Tour.