Fiji, August 10: Reigning Asian Tour Order of Merit winner Scott Hend will jet straight from the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow to the Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course for the Fiji International next week.
Hend, who claimed a tied-10th place finish at the World Golf Championships – Bridgestone Invitational last week, will make his second appearance at the PGA Championship this week before going to compete in the tri-sanctioned Fiji International for the first time in his career.
The Queenslander’s playing schedule has been jam-packed with tournaments which included two Majors and the WGC event through July and early August.
“It’s been a big few weeks for me playing The Open, then the Bridgestone Invitational and the PGA Championship this weekend before the Fiji International next week,” said Hend, currently ranked 92nd on the Official World Golf Ranking.
“I’m looking forward to playing at the Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course in the relaxed atmosphere Fiji is renowned for.
“It’s also my first chance to get back to playing an event on the Asian Tour in a while so hopefully I can get a good result and start climbing their Order of Merit rankings again this year,” added the 43-year-old Australian.
Hend is the latest to join a star-studded line-up which includes former Major Champions Vijay Singh, Mike Weir and Angel Cabrera at the Fiji International, tri-sanctioned for the first time by the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia, European Tour and the Asian Tour.
Hend, a two-time European Tour winner and a nine-time winner on the Asian Tour, is expcting a tough contest at the re-designed Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course.
“A lot of the young guys on the Asian Tour have a lot of potential, throw in the three Major Champions Vijay, Mike and Angel and it’s going to make for a really competitive week, I’m looking forward to it.”
The Honourable Faiyaz Siddiq Koya, Minister for Industry, Trade and Tourism welcomed Scott Hend to Fiji for the first time.
“We’re delighted to welcome a player of Scott Hend’s calibre to Fiji,” Siddiq Koya said.
“He will no doubt be a draw card to golf fans in Fiji following his recent performances overseas and we look forward to hosting Scott and his fellow players at the Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course.”
Gavin Kirkman, CEO of the PGA of Australia which oversees the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia said having a player in strong form like Hend will set up a competitive week for the tournament’s fourth staging.
“Scott’s third round of 7-under 63 against a field of the best players in the world at the WGC – Bridgestone Invitational was certainly thrilling to watch. He is an extremely talented player that often gets on hot streaks and posts low rounds,” Kirkman said.
“I’m sure the Fijian fans will get a kick out of seeing players such as Scott, Vijay Singh, Angel Cabrera and Mike Weir go head-to-head, up close and personal at the Fiji International.”
About the Fiji International
To be held from 17-20 August the Fiji International will be played at Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course which boasts breathtaking views of the Coral Coast and is home to the Natadola Beach Land Estate.
Enticed by the tropical destination, the Fiji International has attracted some of the world’s best golfers since its inaugural staging in 2014 including Fijian hero and three time Major champion Vijay Singh, 2016 champion Brandt Snedeker, 2015 champion Matt Kuchar, 2014 champion Steven Jeffress, Steven Bowditch, Boo Weekley, Nick Price, Robert Allenby, Heath Slocum, Liang Wenchong, and Anirban Lahiri.
In 2017, the Fiji International continues to have a global presence confirming its position as an integral tournament in the South Pacific region, with the tournament being tri-sanctioned by the European Tour, Asian Tour and ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia.
A Pacific paradise, the Fiji International also boasts some of the most unique hospitality options in world golf with the par-3 8th hole providing the perfect vantage point to watch the golf, whilst socialising on the beach.
More than just a golf tournament, the Fiji International aims to leave a lasting legacy for golf in the Pacific region, with the PGA of Australia supporting initiatives to introduce and grow the game in Fiji.
Owned by SEL and the PGA of Australia, the Fiji International is proudly supported by the Fijian Government, Tourism Fiji and the InterContinental Fiji Golf Resort & Spa as the official resort of the tournament until 2017.
For more information about the Fiji International please visit fijiinternational.com.
About Asian Tour
As the official sanctioning body for professional golf in Asia, the Asian Tour leads the development of golf across the region, enhancing the careers of its members while maintaining a commitment to the integrity of the game. The Asian Tour, through its membership of the International Federation of PGA Tours, is the only recognised pan-Asian professional golf tour in Asia. This unique feature positions the Asian Tour at the pinnacle of professional golf in Asia; providing its events with Official World Ranking status. Tour Partners include ECCO (Official Footwear Sponsor), FENIX XCell (Official Apparel Supplier), Titleist (Official Web Partner), Bloomberg TV (Official International Media Partner), Bloomberg Businessweek Chinese (Official International Media Partner), Panasonic (Official Consumer Electronics) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). Sentosa, Singapore is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.
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