Turned professional late as he served as a Ranger in the Royal Thai Army, regularly making parachute drops. He was allowed to play plenty of golf and enjoyed a distinguished amateur career. When he was younger he represented his home province in soccer. Adored soccer legend Pele before getting hooked to golf. . .Enjoyed an incredible start to the 2004 season. After finishing 2003 strongly with a victory in the Volvo Masters of Asia on home soil last December, a week after his disappointment of not securing his US PGA Tour card from the Qualifying School Finals, he went on to win the Myanmar Open and Carlsberg Malaysian Open back-to-back in February. The Malaysian triumph made him the first Thai to win on the European Tour as the event was co-sanctioned and it was a memorable victory as he aced the 16th hole in the final round en route to victory. He also finished in the top-10 in four other events from December to March, another highlight was outscoring Ernie Els in the opening two rounds of the Dubai Desert Classic and then finishing tied fifth alongside Tiger Woods. At the end of 2003, he finished the year leading the career earnings list with US$1,045,340. He overtook Indian Arjun Atwal to become only the second player to surpass the million-dollar mark. Also finished 2003 with the leading stroke average of 69.44. In 2001 he won the Order of Merit title in Asia. The Thai was involved in an enthralling season-long battle with Korea's Charlie Wi. Thongchai prevailed, thanks to his win in the Wills Indian Open and no fewer than 10 other top-10 finishes. That year he also made headlines for qualifying and playing in all four rounds of the US Open. Also played in the British Open in 2002, but had to withdraw on the second day because of injury. Came close to beating Scotland's Colin Montgomerie in the 2002 TCL Classic in China before finishing second. In 1998 he won the individual and team title in the Putra Cup and won the amateur titles of Singapore and Thailand. Also won the Putra Cup individual title in 1997, and was a member of the Thai team that won the South East Asian Games in 1995. Claimed the Pakistan Amateur in 1995. . .
Winner 1995 Pakistan Amateur Open, 1998 Thailand Amateur Open, Singapore Amateur Open, Putra Cup In Philippines (Won Team & Individual Titles), 2000 Singha Bangkok Open, Kolon Cup Korean Open, 2001 Wills Indian Open, 2002 London Myanmar Open, 2003 Volvo Masters of Asia, Thailand, 2004 Myanmar Open, 2004 Carlsberg Malaysian Open
2002 PGA European Tour Summary
Tournaments entered - 11; in money - 9; top-10 finishes - 1; money ?271,299 or £167,992; best finish, T2nd, BMW Asian Open
2003 PGA European Tour Summary
Tournaments entered - 10; in money - 7; top-10 finishes - 3; scoring average 71.00 (ranked 25th); money ?149,392 or £99,571 (ranked 125th); best finish, T6th, BMW Asian Open
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