Macau: Indian golfer Anirban Lahiri is eager to post a stiff challenge to Thailand's Thongchai Jaidee and American David Lipsky for the Macau Open title starting here on Thursday.
Lahiri is particularly upbeat about the tournament after his impressive form here last year where he shot a course record equalling 62 to claim second place.
"It's nice to be back to a course where you've done well. I'm excited to be here as the course is playing great," said Lahiri in a statement Wednesday.
"I think every tournament is a learning lesson, even if you play well or don't play your best. My game is good and I feel confident with how I'm hitting it. A couple of scoring aspects were probably a bit off. I've been working on my short game and putts from inside 10 to 12 feet and just need to make some more of those."
Lahiri is faced with a uphill task of stopping top contenders Thongchai, David and Ernie Els in a star studded line-up.
Thongchai, 44, is three-time Asian Tour No. 1. Currently ranked 42nd in the world he is in the midst of a strong season.
"I'm very happy with my game. I've won once but my game is very consistent. This year is the best year of my life for sure," said Thongchai, who won in Sweden in June and has not missed a single cut in Europe.
"It's nice to be back in Macau. I've not had a chance to spend too much time on the Asian Tour this year, so it's good to be back."
He heaped praise on his long-time coach Peter Wolfenstetter.
"I've worked hard on my swing. I've had injuries in the past and we've changed my swing a bit and adjusted it. I have also switched to the normal length putter and it's been consistent. Everything has clicked this year," he said.
"I want to get higher on the world ranking. I'll keep improving and will train more. Age can slow things down. I know I am getting older, and losing some distance but I am improving on the consistency. I don't think about age. Training is very important and I will keep working hard."