BANGKOK, August 12 - "Great players, great greens...simple as that."
That's how tournament director David Parkin explained the four-under-par cut line at the Thailand Open, the lowest in the four-year history of fast-growing OneAsia.
Parkin said that the birdie fest was a result of the excellent condition of Suwan Golf & Country Club and the high standard of golf.
"There were preferred lies this week, but that did not make a whole lot of difference, the course is in such good condition," said Parkin, one of the most respected golf officials in the region.
"It is a good golf course, the greens are great and these guys are good. The players are hitting it closer to the flags and we have had calm conditions. If you give such good conditions to the bunch of golfers we have this week, they will shoot the lights out."
A feature of the U.S. $1 million Thailand Open has been the performances of emerging players from China and Southeast Asia.
Eight players from the mainland made the cut along with Wisut Artjanawat of Thailand and Malaysia's Nicholas Fung, who gained spots in the field after finishing first and second respectively on the 2011 ASEAN PGA Tour Order of Merit.
Wisut was one off the pace at the halfway mark and went into the final round just three strokes behind leader Chris Wood of England.
Also, three amateurs from the Thailand national team -- Natipong Srithong, Poom Saksansin and Tawan Phongphun -- made it through to the weekend play.
"There have been a lot of encouraging signs this week that players from throughout the Asia-Pacific region are benefitting from playing on OneAsia," said Parkin.
Chinese teenager Li Haotong, who is feeling his way in the play-for-pay ranks after turning professional last September, said that he had improved markedly from competing on OneAsia.
"I have had a chance to play OneAsia events and I have improved very quickly because of it," said Li, who celebrated his 17th birthday last week.
"I'm lucky that I can play with so many international professional players."
Li, who made an early career statement with a joint 39th finish in last year's Australian PGA Championship, added that he was more fortunate than the older generation of China's professionals who did not have the advantage of playing regularly on OneAsia.
"I like the atmosphere on OneAsia -- it is very competitive and everyone is so serious about their game. I am just beginning my career and I have better opportunities than the older generation of Chinese players," he said.
"The cut line was low this week in the Thailand Open; in local events in China the cut is always much higher."
Defending champion Andre Stolz of Australia -- the 2011 OneAsia Order of Merit winner -- said that it was becoming more and more difficult to secure victory on the circuit.
"It's harder now to win on OneAsia with a lot of good players in with a chance every week," said Stolz, who finished with a flourish shooting five-under 67.
"I could have shot 58 today, I hit it so close -- it was just putting that let me down. I am happy with the way I finished. I was just a bit rusty this week."
Stolz added that he was watching the evolution of golf in China with interest.
"You will find that more and more players will emerge from China in the coming years," he said. "They have great facilities and the money is there to hire coaches.
"OneAsia is a great benefit for the Chinese guys. To play with experienced professionals is good for them and they will learn a little bit here and there.
"I know that when I was starting out in Australia the big guns would come down for a few tournaments. You did not get drawn with them for the first few days but sometimes played with a superstar at the weekend and I learned from them."