The COVID-19 pandemic proved to be a blessing in disguise for Ervin Chang as he ended Malaysia's 21-year SEA Games gold medal drought in golf on Sunday.
Level on seven-under 209 with Indonesia's Armadeus Susanto Christian after 54 holes, the 23-year-old amateur golfer came out on top on the third play-off hole at the Heron Lake Golf Course in Vietnam.
Originally planning to turn pro last year, the pandemic forced him to delay his plan, allowing him to compete at the SEA Games for the last time.
His previous appearances saw him finish seventh at the 2017 SEA Games before improving to fourth in the 2019 edition in the Philippines.
Malaysia's last gold medal in golf was in the team's event when the men's team beat Thailand and Philippines at the 2001 SEA Games in front of their home crowd.
The country previously came the closest to winning an individual golf gold medal through Airil Rizman in 2001 and Gavin Green in 2013 — both finished second in their respective editions.
Meanwhile, Jeneath Wong won a bronze medal for Malaysia in the women's individual competition.
Aksi penuh bertenaga dari Jeneath Wong dalam acara Golf Individual (W) yang menghadiahkan pingat gangsa ke-4 pada hari ini. #semarakjuara #sokongmalaysia #sukansea2021 #seagames2021 pic.twitter.com/I4ADQmGOtW— ASTRO ARENA (@ASTROARENA) May 15, 2022