Anirban Lahiri relieved to be in the field for CIMB Classic

Heather Diaz
October 13, 2018

He likes his chances of beating 2017 champion Pat Perez, Brandt Snedeker, Keegan Bradley and 2013 and 2014 victor Ryan Moore, who are among the starters in the CIMB field this week.

Ace golfer Shubhankar Sharma has set his sights on winning the Asian Tour's Habitat for Humanity Standings as he prepares for his debut at the US$7 million CIMB Classic which starts on Thursday in Kuala Lumpur.

The 25-year old major victor picked up another accolade on Tuesday after winning the PGA Tour's Arnold Palmer Award for the most prize money on tour in 2017/18 with $8,694,821 - the second year in a row he has claimed it. He would be (along with Thomas and Ryan Moore) the third consecutive golfer to win two CIMB Classics in a row.

Coming off another strong campaign in the recently concluded 2017-18 PGA Tour season where he won three times, the 25-year-old is aiming to launch his 2018-19 campaign off on a winning note on the West course where he is a staggering 60-under-par over 12 rounds.

"I was still the first reserve on Sunday and I had a 0030 Cathay flight on Monday to fly to KL and also a 2330 redeye to Florida from San Francisco because if I wasn't getting in, I was just going to go back to Florida". Defending champion Paul Dunne is on hand looking to defend the crown he won at Close House a year ago.

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"Since I was young I've always like a crowd watching me play so I'm going to embrace that", said Kim.

Sharma said, "I've seen this event on television for so many years, and obviously Anirban (Lahiri) won the Malaysian Open here a few years ago so I've seen this golf course a lot on television and today was my first look at it. It was a very instrumental part of my career, for sure" said the world No. 4. "I haven't been back in about four years, so the course I knew had always played really a lot of low scores".

He earned a PGA Tour card for the first time in 2016, but quickly earned a return trip to the developmental circuit. Ernie Els shot 72 and was 10 strokes behind.

Perez: I think it's just been okay.

Smith finished last season with seven top-10 finishes, including back-to-back top-five finishes at the first two FedEx Cup Playoff events, the Northern Trust and Dell Technologies Championship. "I could have made some more - I didn't putt as well as I did past year obviously".

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