Paddison powers to victory

Gareth Paddison of New Zealand gave himself a confidence-boost ahead of the new season with victory at the Adroit Insurance Group Victorian PGA Championship on Sunday.

Paddison, who finished ninth on the OneAsia Order of Merit last year, won by a stroke from Australia’s Leighton Lyle despite shooting a three-over par final round of 74 in the PGA Tour of Australasia event.

Tournament favourite Andre Stolz, OneAsia’s moneylist winner in 2011 with two triumphs, finished in a tie for third spot, two shots behind the winner.

“It was a real dog fight in the end – I am just glad that I did it. You know you can put it all down to experience I guess. It was really encouraging sign that I can still finish off a tournament,” said Paddison.

The Kiwi played eight tournaments on OneAsia in 2011 and earned US$104,314. He was third in the Indonesia PGA Championship and 10th in the Indonesia Open.

The 2012 OneAsia season tees off with the US$1 million Enjoy Jakarta Indonesia Open at the Emeralda Golf and Country Club from March 22 to 25.

The tournament will be jointly sanctioned with the Japan Golf Tour Organisation for the first time as part of an historic three-year relationship.

Defending champion Thaworn Wiratchant from Thailand, Stolz, Japanese star Shingo Katayama and Indonesia number one Rory Hie — who finished joint runner-up last year — have all confirmed their participation.

There will be a minimum of 14 events on OneAsia this season boasting overall prize money of US$16 million.

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