Justin Thomas aims to win 3 out of 4 years in Malaysia

Bronson Burgoon of the United States of America adjusts his cap at the 9th hole during round one of the CIMB Classic golf tournament at Tournament Players Club in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia Thursday Oct. 11

Paul Casey's highlights | Round 1 | CIMB 2018 2018

Burgoon's 63 on the par-72 TPC Kuala Lumpur West Course gave him a one-stroke lead over Austin Cook. I felt like the rust was coming off and I was ready to play well here in KL. A year ago I feel like I banged on the door a couple times. I think it's the first time I see the ball roll on the fairways, which is like a good sign.

Pat Perez is the defending champion, but the player most closely associated with this event is Justin Thomas.

I guess the hard part will be having to leave home to compete on the PGA TOUR.

"It is such a pleasure to be here back in Malaysia again".

Momentum may or may not be real, but these golfers have continued some nice stretches of golf so far this week at the CIMB Classic, and the eventual victor could certainly come from this threesome.

Perez: As golfers, sometimes you just like a golf course the minute you set eyes on it. TPC KL is one of those golf courses where I feel comfortable standing on the tee boxes and seeing what's in front of me.

It kicks off a swing of three big tournaments in Asia for the 21-year-old, along with next week's CJ Cup in South Korea and the WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai.

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"My goal is to be in the top-60 in the FedExCup points, and keep the card as long as I can, same as my good friend Anirban (Lahiri). I think I've got enough experience from playing against the world-class players to do so".

While Kiradech has his PGA TOUR card in hand for the 2018-19 Season, India's Shubhankar Sharma, who is in the field as one of the top-10 players from the Asian Tour, is eager to get his way to the world's premier circuit.

"No doubt very, very important", said Sharma, who came to global prominence with his T9 finish at the WGC-Mexico Championship where he led after the second and third rounds.

"You have to play well here every day or at least get a round like today.it's what could end up winning me this golf tournament", Thomas said. "I feel like this start will really help me securing my card [on the PGA Tour]".

"With where I want to go - ultimately I want to be on the PGA Tour - the Web.Com is definitely the stepping stone towards that path". You have things that you would not really look at when you're playing well, but when you're playing bad, you tend to look at the finer things.

Perez cruised to victory at last year's tournament thanks to a score of 24 under par. This year, Thomas has two wins and 10 top-10 finishes.

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