#QueensCup: 9 things you need to know

1The Queen’s Cup is celebrating its ninth straight edition this week with Bangkok Airways and Sports Authority of Thailand being the main sponsors.

2This week’s prize fund on offer is a record US$500,000, a jump of US$200,000 from last year. The Queen’s Cup is also the 10th leg of the Asian Tour’s 2017 season and the second of the year in Thailand.

Rattanon Wannasrichan of Thailand

Rattanon Wannasrichan of Thailand

3Australian Scott Hend, the reigning Asian Tour Order of Merit winner, will defend his title at Santiburi Samui. He will be aiming to become only the third player to win the tournament twice and the first to successfully defend.

4No fewer than 40 Asian Tour champions, with an accumulated 120 tournament victories, will feature in the 144-man event. Amongst this season’s winners in the field include Rattanon Wannasrichan (Tha), Jazz Janewattananond (Tha), Shiv Kapur (Ind), Prayad Marksaeng (Tha), Todd Sinnott (Aus) and S.S.P. Chawrasia (Ind).

5Eight of the current top-10 players on the Order of Merit, will be in the Queen’s Cup, making it one of its strongest fields in the event’s history. Chawrasia, winner of the Hero indian Open, is the highest ranked golfer in the field at second place.

6Chawrasia has a chance to take over top spot on the Order of Merit in the absence of David Lipsky, whom he trails by about US$32,000. The Indian star needs to finish at least joint second with one other golfer to overtake Lipsky.

Santiburi Samui Country Club

Santiburi Samui Country Club

7Former Queen’s Cup champions in the field include Chawalit Plaphol, Chinnarat Phadungsil, Thaworn Wiratchant and Prayad Marksaeng. Thaworn won in 2012 and 2014 while Prayad was victorious in 2013 and 2015. No player has won the Queen’s Cup on three occasions.

8Four Order of Merit champions will feature in the Queen’s Cup. Apart from Hend, India’s Jeev Milkha Singh, Filipino Juvic Pagunsan and Thaworn will compete in the Queen’s Cup.

9Santiburi Samui, a par 71 course, is one of the top golf courses located on the holiday isle of Samui. The course starts off forest deep offering steep uphill and downhill terrain which demands distance control. The finishing holes are amongst some of the most demanding on the Asian Tour, with the par five 18th hole setting the stage for a dramatic conclusion to the tournament.