Bryan Saltus wins inaugural Cambodian Open

American Bryan Saltus fired a five-under par 67 to win the inaugural Cambodian Open on Sunday.

updated: December 03, 2007 17:36 IST
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American Bryan Saltus fired a five-under par 67 to win the inaugural Cambodian Open on Sunday, dedicating his first Asian Tour title to the rock group Grateful Dead, of whom he is a fanatical follower.

Saltus ended with a four-round total of 17-under 271 to win by three strokes from third-round leader Adam Groom of Australia (71 on Sunday), with a further three shots back to the Thai pair Prom Meesawat (70) and Thaworn Wiratchant (70).

Saltus won $47,550 (euro32,213) and moved to 30th place in the Tour Order of Merit by winning the $300,000 (euro203,238) event played near Cambodia's prime tourist attraction, the temple Angkor Wat.

"This is awesome," Saltus said. "I would like to dedicate this win to the Grateful Dead as they have inspired me all the way.

"Siem Reap is right up my alley so Ive enjoyed my time on and off the course this week."

Saltus has been to 153 concerts by the Grateful Dead who are known for their dedicated followers, known as 'Dead Heads'.

He birdied the first three holes, continuing the hot streak with his new putter that proved decisive.

"My putting has been the winning formula this week," Saltus said.

"I had a good start with three birdies and my confidence carried on after that. I told my caddie that if I win, I would buy her a motorbike and now that Ive done it, I will get her a brand new motorbike."

Saltus celebrated his win by jumping into the water adjacent to the final hole.

Groom and Saltus both had five birdies in the final round, but the Australian was let down by four bogies.

"Ive shot four rounds under par which was something I couldnt do all year until this week," Groom said.

"It was a tough day out there and catching Bryan was going to be difficult with the form he was in today."

Thailand's Chapchai Nirat shot a 73 in the final round to finish equal eighth with a 280, and moved into second place on the Order of Merit.