30th September 2018 | Sunshine Tour
Adilson savours long-awaited Asian triumph
Adilson savours long-awaited Asian triumph
From the Asian Tour
Adilson Da Silva of Brazil claimed a long-awaited victory on the Asian Tour after closing with a third consecutive two-under-par 70 to win by one shot at the storied Mercuries Taiwan Masters on Sunday.
The 46-year-old Da Silva, who held a one-shot lead heading into the final round, fired three birdies on the third, seventh and 13th holes before dropping a shot on the last for a winning total of seven-under-par 281 in the US$850,000 event.
Da Silva, who started playing on Tour after coming through the Qualifying School in 2011, earned a career-biggest prize purse of US$170,000 thanks to his victory. He also became the first Brazilian to win on the region’s premier Tour since it was inaugurated in 2004.
Local hero Lin Wen-tang signed for a 70 to share second place with American Berry Henson, who posted a 69, at the fabled Taiwan Golf and Country Club, which is celebrating its centennial year in 2018.
Qualifying school graduate Heungchol Joo of Korea marked his best result so far this season after battling to a 72 to sit in fourth place alongside South African Justin Harding, who closed with a 72, in what is the longest running full-field event on the Asian Tour.
Despite missing out on his third win of the season, Harding took pride in his commendable result which moved him up two spots to sixth place on the Asian Tour Habitat for Humanity Standings, led by India’s Shubhankar Sharma, who finished in tied-42nd place.
The top 10 and top four players (not otherwise exempt) on the Habitat for Humanity standings, as of October 7, will qualify for the US$7 million CIMB Classic and US$10 million WGC-HSBC Champions staged in Malaysia and China respectively.
- Adilson Da Silva became the first Brazilian to win on the Asian Tour following his victory. He also takes home a career-biggest prize purse of US$170,000 thanks to his win.
- Da Silva has an impeccable track record at the Mercuries Taiwan Masters. He has not finished outside top-three in his last three starts in the storied event. In his debut appearance in 2012, he also enjoyed a tied-ninth place finish.
- Prior to this week, Da Silva has made only three cuts in 11 starts this season. He started the season with six consecutive missed cuts before claiming a tied-ninth place result in Japan last week.
- Last year, Da Silva came in joint runner-up after finishing two shots back of winner Gavin Green of Malaysia. He used back the same local caddy this week.
Da Silva welcomed his twin daughters, Sienna and Amelia, three months ago.
- Da Silva enjoyed a career high in 2016 when he was given the honour of striking the first tee shot at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro when golf made a return into the programme after 112 years.
- Da Silva has won multiple times on the Sunshine Tour. He started playing extensively in Zimbabwe from between 1996 to 2003, winning more than 30 titles and five Zimbabwean Order of Merit crowns. Played in the British Open in 2000 and 2007.
Adilson Da Silva
This means so much to me. I really like playing in Asia and it’s so special to win here. The whole atmosphere here is great. The sponsors are great here as well. Mr George Wong, Chairman of the Mercuries Group, has been here the whole week, talking to players every now and then.
You don’t see that anywhere else. I think it’s just great to see. I had a number to make on my mind today. I told myself not to worry about other people’s scores and just focus shot by shot. I think that helped me a lot.
I ignored everything else and managed to do my thing out there. I hit my tee shots very good. I kept giving myself chances in approach shots. If you missed the fairways, it’s very difficult to stop the ball on the greens. But I gave myself a lot of chances by keeping it in play.
I am really comfortable with the layout here. I also think it’s a very fair golf course because if you hit good shots, you will be rewarded. This year, the greens are so good. It’s the best I have ever seen. Over the years, I found a plan to play the course as well.
I was just trying to hit the same shots over and over on every hole. I never change my plan much to be honest. That experiences have helped me a lot a lot. I just kept it very simple really. I didn’t really complicate things too much.
I had a bit of a tough time at the beginning of the year. I struggled with my putting a lot. I was very disappointed because I was playing pretty well. It’s just my putting which has been so bad. It affected my entire game because I wasn’t able to give as much attention in playing good. I couldn’t get anything positive.
But I realised that I am not having a good mindset about my game so I picked myself up, went through my rounds and see what went wrong. I have been working really hard on my putting and it started to pay off. This win just came at the right time.
When you start making putts, you start gaining confidence. I have been changing putters but I kind of switch back to my old ways of putting, my old technique. It’s just so special to finally win in Asia and in a tournament that meant so much to me. I am really happy with myself.
My wife Althea and I just welcomed our twin girls three months ago, Sienna and Amelia. My son is nearly five years old now. I guess they just pushed me to do better. I want to do better for them and I did it. They say newborns give you luck. I guess that’s true!
I had a good feeling out there. I told myself I can do this. I have been putting well and I just have to believe it and stay in the presence. I woke up with the same mindset today. I wasn’t really excited and I wasn’t thinking about my overnight one-shot lead.
I kept a quiet mind and had a number on my mind and just try to achieve it. I think this frame of mind helped a lot. I used the same caddy whom I used last year when I came in joint second. He helped me a lot with the line readings. He is very good.
I enjoyed the same time since I came to play in Asia. I am really happy with my win. I want to send my appreciation to Mr. George Wong again. He’s been such a good sponsor. He’s so keen in getting involved with the game and he’s so passionate about it. He really likes the game. This is what the game needs and it’s really good to see.