Hong Kong, October 18: Justin Rose, Tommy Fleetwood and Rafa Cabrera Bello have confirmed that they will join Masters Champion, Sergio Garcia, in a star-studded field at the UBS Hong Kong Open from November 23 – 26.
Rose is familiar to Hong Kong fans, having won the UBS Hong Kong Open in 2015, just eight months before becoming the Olympic champion in Rio.
The Englishman is widely recognised as one of the finest players of his generation, winning the US Open in 2013 and amassing 18 titles worldwide in his career to date.
Rose came agonisingly close to adding a second Major to his US Open trophy earlier this year, before finishing as the eventual runner-up to Garcia at the Masters after a gripping final-round battle with the two ultimately separated by a play-off.
“I’ve had a decent year in 2017 – I obviously had a great chance to add a second Major at the Masters but Sergio just got the better of me that day. I’m looking ahead to 2018 now, and it would be a great way for me to start the new European Tour season with another UBS Hong Kong Open title.”
“It’s never difficult to add Hong Kong to your schedule and I can’t wait to get back to one of my favourite places and favourite tournaments in the world,” said world number-15, Rose.
Fleetwood also enters the UBS Hong Kong Open in rare form, having won twice on the European Tour, and finishing second at the WGC – Mexico Championship, and fourth at the US Open.
The 26 year-old Englishman finished in a tie for third at last year’s UBS Hong Kong Open and has since enjoyed the most successful period of his career to date.
“Last year was my first visit to Hong Kong and I just loved the golf course, the tournament and everything about the city,” said Fleetwood, currently ranked 18th in the world.
“I finished third last year and it was performances like that which gave me the momentum to go on and have such an amazing season this year. The golf course really suits me so hopefully I can keep playing well and give myself a chance to win.”
Meanwhile, Cabrera Bello will be looking to go one better on his return to Fanling. The Spaniard led the tournament for three rounds last year before an inspired back-nine performance from Sam Brazel denied him the title.
Cabrera Bello has since returned to the winner’s enclosure, taking a third European Tour title at the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open before finishing tied fourth at The Open to burst back into the world’s top 20.
“There is definitely a little unfinished business for me in Hong Kong,” said Cabrera Bello. “I felt I should have won it last year, so hopefully I can go one better this year.
“It is such a great golf course, such an amazing city in Hong Kong and the tournament has a really good title sponsor in UBS, so it is a week the players really enjoy and want to come back to.”
In keeping with the organizers’ focus on enhancing the accessibility of the UBS Hong Kong Open, entry to the tournament will once again be free of charge for all spectators on Thursday, 23 and Friday, 24 November.
For the second year, attendees who are 21 and under will also have free admission to the tournament. Last year, the tournament generated record attendance with in excess of 46,000 people attending over the four days.
“The addition of Justin Rose, Tommy Fleetwood and Rafa Cabrero Bello to the field alongside Masters champion Sergio Garcia and defending UBS Hong Kong Open champion Sam Brazel will add even more lustre to the tournament this year,” said Amy Lo, Chairman and Head of UBS Wealth Management, Greater China and Country Head of UBS Hong Kong.
Dr Peter Lam, Chairman, Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) said, “We’re excited to see more of the world’s best golfers in action in Hong Kong for the UBS Hong Kong Open, one of the world’s best-known international golf events. With the strong line-up this year, I’m sure the UBS Hong Kong Open will enrich the city’s event portfolio and offer visitors a thrilling tournament. The HKTB fully supports this longest-standing professional sporting event and will continue to stage and support more international sports events in Hong Kong to consolidate the city’s position as Asia’s events capital.”
Arnold Wong, Captain of the Hong Kong Golf Club, added: “These three players are an exciting addition to the 2017 UBS Hong Kong Open. Once again, we will have the opportunity to see the reigning Masters and Olympic champions compete on the composite course at the Hong Kong Golf Club in Fanling. We’re all very much looking forward to what promises to be another fantastic edition of the tournament.”
The UBS Hong Kong Open is co-sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours as well as the Hong Kong Golf Association.
To register for free tickets for the tournament or to purchase tickets for the Saturday and Sunday, please go to www.ticketflap.com
The UBS Hong Kong Open 2017 is an accredited event celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the establishment of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). The HKSAR Government and HKTB fully support the UBS HK Open.
To share the joy of the 20th Anniversary, the HKSAR Government is joining hands with different sectors to organise a wide variety of activities and events under the theme “Together, Progress, Opportunity”.
For more details on 20th Anniversary events and activities, please visit: www.hksar20.gov.hk/eng