Starting at hole No 10, the 19-year-old sprinkled her back nine performance with six birdies before adding two more after the turn for eight under at the par 72 6,925-yard layout for the men and 6,051 for the women.
The teenager from Saraburi who won the first ever Thailand Mixed last year in Hua Hin established a three-stroke advantage over former Thailand PGA Tour winner Nirun Sae-ueng.
“It was a combination of luck and good form for me today,” said Arpichaya, winner of the Order of Merits on the Thai LPGA Tour in 2018. “I came here with a good game plan, hitting good shots and got a lot of birdies close to the pins.”
Arpichaya said she also took the advantage of her familiarity with the Southern Hill where her team settled at fourth in the National Games back in 2017.
“I remember this course well. I even shed a tear here after my team almost won a bronze in the National Games five years ago,” added the teenager who along with Chanettee Wannasaen remain the only two female champions on the TrustGolf Tour.
“Tomorrow, I will stick to my game plan. I will attack the pins on easy holes and play it safe on tough holes. Also, I hope to hit the fairway on the sixth hole which is the most challenging for me on this course,” she added.
Nirun, winner of the Thailand PGA Tour event in Lumphun 2016, committed a lone bogey on the fourth hole before he went on to shoot six birdies to settle with a 67.
“I played quite well except on the fourth hole where I stroke the ball to the left and ended up with my only bogey of the day. From then on, I focused on my tee shots and aimed for the fairways better,” said Nirun from Nakhon Pathom.
“About tomorrow, I will keep doing the same thing by hitting to the fairways and make the putts,” added Nirun who lost to Settee Prakrongvech by a stroke in the Boonchu Ruangkit Championship, an All Thailand Golf Tour(ATGT) event, in January.
Eight players followed a stroke away at tied third, each with a 68. That included the talented Chanettee, winner of the previous Thailand Mixed circuit in Hua Hin, rising star Denwit David Boriboonsub, the 2021 Rookie of the Year on the ATGT, former SEA Games gold medallist Wichayanon Chothirunrungrueng, Thai LPGA Tour members Supamas Sangchan, Nattagade Nimitpongkul, Chonlatit Chuenboonngam, Punnarai Meesom-us and former LPGA player Pavarisa Yoktuan.
Published : Mar 23, 2022
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Published : March 24, 2022
By : THE NATION