Hsieh, 22, claimed a breakthrough triumph in the Ballantine’s Taiwan Championship on home soil to move into top spot on the Order of Merit in August. With the ADT season coming to a close where the top-three players will earn cards on the Asian Tour in 2013, Hsieh is hopeful he can achieve his goal.
“I’m aiming to finish in the top-three to get my Asian Tour card. That’s my main goal. The ADT is very good. It is awesome because young players like me will get a chance to gain more experience.
“The win in Taipei will definitely give me more confidence,” said the 22-year-old, who earned the right to play on the ADT by competing in the Qualifying School in Thailand in January.
Hsieh, who turned professional early this year, is highly rated in Taipei with the likes of multiple Asian Tour champion Lin Wen-tang predicting a very bright future for the young player.
“He is very dedicated to the game and works hard. I am not surprised to see him leading the ADT Order of Merit,” said Lin, who was beaten by Hsieh in the Ballantine’s Taiwan Championship which featured many of Chinese Taipei’s top players including Yeh Wei-tze and Chan Yih-shin, both Asian Tour winners.
The RM180,000 (approximately US$60,000) Sarawak Masters, the 10th leg of the season, is the first ADT tournament to be played in Sarawak, which is the largest Malaysian state located on the isle of Borneo. The ADT will return to Sarawak for the Eastwood Valley Masters later this month.
The top-five players on the Order of Merit will feature in the Sarawak Masters this week along with Malaysia’s leading players such as Shaaban Hussin, Iain Steel, Nicholas Fung, Sukree Othman, R. Nachimuthu and S. Siva Chandhran, who won the ADT Order of Merit in the inaugural 2010 season.
Filipino Jay Bayron, ranked second, and third-ranked Peter Richardson of England will tee up at the Sarawak Golf Club with the hope of retaining their positions.
Bayron, who was victorious at the Bii Maybank ADT Challenge in Indonesia, is expected to challenge for the Sarawak Masters title while Richardson, who won the PGM-ADT Masters at A’Famosa in Malaysia earlier in the year, will also be ready to take advantage should any of the leaders stumble.
Lindsay Renolds of Canada, Australian Luke Bleumink, England’s Grant Jackson and Singapore’s Quincy Quek, who are all in the top-10 of the Order of Merit, will also feature in Sarawak.
10th-ranked Quek is determined to make a title charge following his win at the ICTSI Orchard Golf Championship in the Philippines in August.
“It's a great feeling to bag your first win. Confidence levels are definitely up. But this also means that I must continue to work even harder,” he said.
Celebrating its third season, the ADT has grown immensely since its launch in 2010 with five tournaments. There are currently 12 tournaments on the schedule, with one more tournament to be announced as the season-ending event.
From 2013 onwards, all ADT events will receive Official World Golf Ranking points which is a massive boost for the game in the region. The world rankings will be used to determine the playing field for the Olympic Games in Rio De Janeiro in 2016 when golf makes a return into the programme.