AGR Four-Ball open as cousins seek hat-trick

Cousins Khusaal Thackersey and Amish Jaitha pose with the trophy after winning last year’s Angkor Four-Ball Championship. Photo supplied
Cousins Khusaal Thackersey and Amish Jaitha pose with the trophy after winning last year’s Angkor Four-Ball Championship. Photo supplied

Even as the formidable pairing of Indian cousins Amish Jaitha and Khusaal Thackersey work out their travel plans to seek an unprecedented hat-trick of wins in Cambodia’s most popular pairs golfing challenge, entries have been thrown open for the fourth annual Angkor Four-Ball Championship.

The tournament is to be contested over the Sir Nick Faldo-designed course at the Angkor Golf Resort in Siem Reap from April 6-8.

Last year Jaitha and Thackersey fired on all cylinders to fight back from a four-shot deficit over leaders Stephen Kennedy and Mark Penfold of Australia to complete memorable back-to-back triumphs having dominated the event the previous year.

With the cousins clearly bringing with them another winning threat if they choose to defend their title, the event is expected to be an even bigger hit than last year.

The pairs format has been very well received, with the players feeling a lot less pressure compared to singles strokeplay where every shot counts.

A four-ball contest consists of two teams of two golfers competing against each other. Each golfer plays his own ball throughout the round, so that four balls are in play. A team’s number of strokes for a given hole is that of the lowest scoring team member.

Four-ball is a style of team golf often used in group competitions, including the Presidents Cup and Ryder Cup.

Because the rules permit excellent play by one teammate to offset less than effective play by their partner, it is often a sound strategy to pair an aggressive player with someone who is steady rather than spectacular.

This has been a tactic that has worked to the advantage of the Indian cousins as reflected in their results over the past two years.

Heineken will continue as main sponsor in 2018, combined with the hospitality the AGR will be laying out.

The event has considerably grown in popularity among players in the region and further, drawing hopefuls from as far afield as Australia and even the United Kingdom.

Award for AGR in Spain
For the second consecutive year, the Angkor Golf Resort was recently voted as the best course in Cambodia at the 2017 World Golf Awards, confirming its status as one of Southeast Asia’s must-play courses. The award was given at La Manga Club, which welcomed the world’s elite golf hospitality industry to Spain.