Chen, He and Wang take final three spots at Volvo China Open Qualifier

Thu 29 Mar 2018

Chen, He and Wang take final three spots at Volvo China Open Qualifier


Beijing, March 29: China’s Changping Chen held on to his overnight lead to claim first place at the Volvo China Open Qualifying event in Kunming on Wednesday.

The 33-year-old Chen, who fired a second-round one-under-par 71 to take the top spot, as well as compatriots Shaocai He (70) and Xu Wang (72), secured their spots at the RMB 20 million (approximately US$3.15 million) Volvo China Open which gets underway at the Topwin Golf and Country Club from April 26 to 29.

Born in Yunnan, Chen majored in basketball while he attended university but switched to playing golf in 2009 when he could not compete with the traditionally lofty basketball players because of his height. He lived in Yunnan for 20 years before moving away and settling in Chongqing because of better weather conditions to play golf.

“I’m lucky to be able to qualify for the Volvo China Open in my home province. I have two tournaments to play before the Volvo Open, so I hope my good form continues all the way to Beijing. Golf is a sport that toughens my mind and brings me the inner peace to tolerate the unfair things that occur in daily life, which is why I enjoy playing." said Chen, who has two daughters aged five and two.

The 36-year-old He, who is born in Kunming, has won five out of the seven times he played in Volvo Open Qualifiers, was calm and collected when he approached the final round of the qualifying event, held at the demanding golf course designed by Phil Mickelson.

“My goal is to make the weekend rounds in Beijing this year since I have not managed to do so in previous years. My biggest challenge at the Topwin will be with the driver as the course is very long and obviously favours the longer hitters," said He. 

The third and final spot went to 35-year-old Wang, who had qualified for the tournament three times before, and managed again this year after a nail-biting two-hole play-off. 

“I’m delighted to qualify this time as the Volvo China Open is once again taking place in my hometown of Beijing,” said Wang.

“I am very familiar with the course at Topwin and I hope to make the cut this year in front of the supportive local crowd. I have noticed a lot more teenagers and amateurs competing in the Volvo China Open Qualifiers, which makes me very optimistic about the future of golf in China. I gave up the opportunity to play in another tournament this week as I wanted to play in my National Open, so I am happy to have accomplished my mission," added Wang.

With the conclusion of the Kunming Jialize Qualifying, all four of this year’s Volvo China Open Qualifying events have been completed. Apart from Chen, He and Wang, nine other qualifiers have won a place in the 24th Volvo China Open which will be played at Beijing’s Topwin Golf and Country Club next month. They are Lien Lu-Sen of Chinese Taipei, John Michael O'Toole and Blake Snyder of the United States as well as Chinese golfers Dongyu Wang, Zeyu He, Jianfeng Ye, Zheng Ouyang, Chun Liu and amateur Peicheng Chen.

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