June 10: Daniel Chopra’s season keeps getting better. The Swede secured his place in the US Open by finishing tied fourth in the sectional qualifiers earlier this week in Ohio.
The Asian Tour regular fired rounds of 69 and 65 for a 10-under-par 134 total and will line-up alongside the world’s best players at Shinnecock Hills in New York from June 17-20 for the year’s second Major.
Chopra, who won the Mercuries Masters in Taiwan in 2001, is a member of the US PGA Tour but has found success on the secondary circuit, the Nationwide Tour, with two victories this season. In Ohio, a total of 184 players teed up for 33 places and Chopra was outstanding in his second round.
From its season-opening event in Okinawa to the recent SK Telecom Open in Korea, Asian Tour stars have sparkled both at home and abroad. Big-name players have reinforced their positions, the Tour has welcomed five new first time winners while low scoring has been achieved in 12 events staged so far.
With the newly-established Asian Tour receiving widespread support from corporate backers, sponsors, golf associations and national PGAs, the playing membership has let their clubs do the talking on some of Asia’s finest fairways.
Kuala Lumpur, June 1: Asian Tour stalwarts Thongchai Jaidee and Zhang Lian-wei tee up in America this week with a mission to reinforce the region’s rapid rise on the global stage.
Both players have been extended invitations to play in The Memorial Tournament, a US PGA Tour event hosted by golf great Jack Nicklaus, and following rapid strides made in recent times by Asian Tour members, Thongchai and Zhang will be looking to eclipse the likes Tiger Woods, Ernie Els and Vijay Singh.
Nicklaus, arguably the best golfer of all time, was delighted that the Memorial Tournament’s Captains Club had extended invites to Chinese number one Zhang and Thailand’s Thongchai, the current Asian Tour Order of Merit leader.
American Ted Purdy, an Asian Tour regular, finished joint 23rd after carding rounds of 72, 64, 71 and 73 for a 280 aggregate while Daniel Chopra and Arjun Atwal missed the cut.
Kuala Lumpur, May 24: Carlsberg, one of the largest brewery groups in the world as well as in Vietnam, will title sponsor the Carlsberg Masters Vietnam, a new event which will bring together the best players from the Asian Tour.
The inaugural Carlsberg Masters Vietnam will be staged from November 4-7 at Chi Linh Star Golf and Country Club in Hanoi where Asia’s finest will shoot for US$200,000 in total prize money. Carlsberg has signed a three-year contract with the Asian Tour.
“We are delighted to announce Carlsberg’s title sponsorship of a new and exciting event, the Carlsberg Masters Vietnam. Golf in this country is still very much at a developing stage, but it is in a strong growth and this is why we are committed to help the game grow in Vietnam. This new event is going to be the biggest sporting event in Vietnam this year and will put Vietnam on the international golfing map,” said South East Asia Brewery Ltd. General Director Henrik J. Andersen.
Seoul, May 23: Scotsman Simon Yates ended a six-year title drought when he won the US$400,000 SK Telecom Open by one shot over overnight leader Charlie Wi of Korea and Rick Gibson of Canada today.