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Miguel Tabuena's patience will be put to the test as he aims to overcome the windy conditions at the US$600,000 Mercuries Taiwan Masters starting Thursday. Tabuena finished fourth in last year's edition for his best result on the Asian Tour so far and is keen on landing his first Asian Tour title at the challenging Taiwan Golf and Country Club.
He will be joined by countryman Angelo Que, Mardan Mamat of Singapore, Indian star Anirban Lahiri and 14-time Asian Tour winner Thaworn Wiratchant, who won this event in 2004.
Tabuena is prepared to overcome the turbulent week where wind gusts of over 30 kilometres per hour are expected to sweep the Taiwan Golf and Country Club.
"It is the same greens but it will be a lot windier and a test of patience. I'm hitting the ball pretty well but obviously you need to hole a lot of putts. I worked a lot on my short game last week so hopefully I can perform better," said Tabuena.
He pulled an intercostal muscle in his back three weeks ago but is fully recovered after taking a week's break from golf.
"It is better this week and I don't feel any pain. It was good to have a rest last week," said the 17-year-old, who contended at the ICTSI Philippine Open and Queen's Cup in Thailand before finishing tied 11th and 10th respectively.
"I always think of winning but it is not in my hands. I just need to go out there and play my best. You can't get ahead of yourself because there are so many good players in the field this week," said Tabuena.
Australia's Darren Beck, who was in contention in Japan last week before finishing 11th, is relying on his yoga classes to guide him to a second Asian Tour victory since 2009.
"I used to get angry when I hit bad shots but I've learned to calm myself down after going for yoga classes and doing breathing exercises with my wife and coach. It has definitely helped my game with the result I had last week," said Beck.
"I was struggling to save my Asian Tour card but last week's result puts me in good position on the Order of Merit. Now I can relax and prepare myself for the week ahead and the busy stretch towards the end," said Beck, currently in 38th place on the Order of Merit.
Singapore's Quincy Quek hopes to replicate his winning form at the ICTSI Orchard Golf Championship in the Philippines on the Asian Development Tour (ADT) in August.
"I guess after the win, you look forward to each week a little more. I know the feeling of winning and I come out searching for that same feeling. I try and recreate that feeling and put myself in a good position," said Quek.
He has not enjoyed the best of results on the Asian Tour but is hoping to spring a surprise win at the Taiwan Golf and Country Club, a venue which he last played on in 2009.
"I played two weeks in the Philippines. I played horrible in the first week and going into the second week, I didn't really think about the win. I just wanted to stay there for four days. It is funny because the win comes so suddenly.
"You got to be patient. That's the nature of golf, you can swing it horrible in the practice round and things click during the tournament and you win it," he smiled.
Title holder Lu Wei-chih of Chinese Taipei will not defend his title this year as he recovers from a brain surgery to remove a tumour.
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