Last year’s runner-up Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand got off to a winning start at the Volvo World Match Play Championship on Wednesday. The three-time Asian Tour Order of Merit winner saw off Italy’s Francesco Molinari two up despite three-putting on the 17th hole to set-up a nervy trip down the last at the London Golf Club.

Thongchai, 44, has made the cut in all 20 European Tour appearances this year and won his second title on European soil at the Nordea Masters earlier in the year.

He was also the captain for Team Asia in the inaugural EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM which forced a dramatic 10-10 tie against Team Europe in Malaysia.