Jbe Kruger tied for fourth at the Asia Pacific Open when he finished at four-under-par, four strokes shy of winner Tetsuji Hiratsuka in the $1,700,000 event at Biwako Country Club on Saturday.
A solid 64 on the first round shot Kruger to the lead, but the 25-year-old struggled through the following three rounds and joined a five-way tie for fourth.
Kruger remains at third on the Asian Tour Order of Merit after his seven-under-par opening round cushioned him from the next three rounds, in which he failed to card below par.
The result moves Hiratsuka to first on the Order of Merit, yet Kruger earned enough to remain at third by overtaking BangladeshÂs Siddikur.
A two-time winner on the Sunshine Tour, Kruger will be disappointed that he could not capitalise on such a strong opening round as he still hunts a maiden win on the Asian Tour.
Countryman Peter Karmis failed to shoot below par throughout the tournament yet managed to hang through the first two days and make the cut.
Karmis had a disappointing end when finished in a share of 67th after carding 79 for the final round.
Further afield was Keith Horne, who failed to make the cut after carding 73 and 74 for his respective two rounds.
With this result Kruger recorded his fifth top-10 finish for the year, but he must learn how to close tournaments before he will take that elusive maiden victory.