Chinese legends return to Macao

Thu 24 Sep 2015

Chinese legends return to Macao

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Macao, September 24: The two most decorated Chinese golf stars, Zhang Lian-wei and Liang Wen-chong, will return to the Venetian Macao Open and attempt to bring the coveted trophy back to China for the first time in more than a decade.
The US$1 million tournament, taking place between 15 to 18 October at the Macau Golf & Country Club, is once again organised by the Macao Sport Development Board of Macao SAR Government along with the Golf Association of Macau. Sanctioned by the latter and the Asian Tour, The Venetian® Macao is supporting the iconic event as title sponsor for the fourth consecutive year.
Zhang, the only player to have won the Venetian Macao Open twice in its 16-year history, was the last champion from China when the Zhuhai native triumphed over Zimbabwe’s Nick Price in a dramatic five-hole play-off in 2002. Zhang went on to create history by becoming the first Chinese golfer from his country to win a co-sanctioned Asian Tour and European Tour event and the first to compete in The Masters Tournament. His trailblazing success put China firmly on the world map of golf and his legacy has become an inspiration to many upcoming talents back home.
The five-time Asian Tour winner considers the Venetian Macao Open as one of his favourite events. In the tournament’s  history, the veteran star has only missed one appearance due to injury and has made the cut in every other edition. Zhang said:
“The Venetian Macao Open has a special place in my heart. I always play well here and will keep coming back as long as the organisers will have me! There is something about the tournament, the course and the whole experience, that brings out the best in me. To make the cut everytime in Macao is something that I am very proud of and I am looking forward to keeping this record going this year. The competition will be very tough once again with Ernie Els, Anirban Lahiri and Scott Hend all there, but it is an honour to be competing with these champions, so I will make sure I make the most of it.”
Liang Wen Chong_Credit Venetian Macao OpenThe 37-year-old Liang is the only player from China to have broken into the top-100 in the Official World Golf Ranking and he recorded a maiden win in Japan in June. The 2007 Asian Tour Order of Merit winner is playing at the Venetian Macao Open for the third year in a row where he finished tied-40th and tied-11th in 2014 and 2013 respectively. The married father of two commented:
“I competed in the Venetian Macao Open for the first time in 2012 and have grown to really enjoy it so I’ve made it a regular stop on my calendar. Many top players from around the region are here so you know it will get competitive and you need to be on top of your game to win. The tournament is in a good spot on the Asian Tour calendar and really sets the tone as we head into the latter part of the season.”
Zhang and Liang will lead a strong contingent of Chinese players in Macao to compete against a high calibre field that including defending and 2013 champions, Lahiri and Hend, as well as four-time Major Champion Els. China prodigy Guan Tian-lang, who made headlines in 2013 when he became the youngest player ever to play (and make the cut) at the Masters, has already confirmed his commitment to play. Other young guns from China joining him are Hu Mu, Dou Zecheng, Chen Zihao, Li Chao, Cao Yi and Jin Cheng.
José Tavares, President of Macao Sport Development Board of Macao SAR Government (MSDB), said:
“Macao will always welcome Mr. Zhang Lian-wei and Mr. Liang Wen-chong, who are two of the greatest supporters of the Venetian Macao Open. They have enthralled us over the years with their golf skills and we look forward to seeing these two great champions battle it out at Macau Golf & Country Club once more. It will be extremely interesting to see the young talents that are coming up from China too, and we look forward to seeing them mounting a strong challenge at the tournament.”
Dave Horton, Global Chief Marketing Officer of Las Vegas Sands Corp. and Sands China Ltd., commented:
“We are looking forward to welcoming and hosting the Chinese players who are to play at the Venetian Macao Open this year. While the fans will no doubt be treated to four days of world-class professional golf action, we will ensure the players themselves have an enjoyable and relaxing stay in Macao.”
The prestigious tournament, in its 17th edition, will see its total prize fund increase for a third consecutive year, taking it to the all-important US$1 million mark. Since its inauguration in 1998, many other world-class golfers have graced the fairways of Macau Golf & Country Club, including Lee Westwood (winner in 1999), Colin Montgomerie (winner in 2003), Nick Faldo, Padraig Harrington, Fred Couples, Ian Woosnam, Mark O’Meara, and Chinese stars Zhang Lian-wei and Liang Wen-chong.
For more details on the Venetian Macao Open, please visit: www.thevenetianmacaoopen.com.
About Macao Sport Development Board of the Macao Special Administrative Region Government
Macao Sport Development Board, under the capacity of the Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture of the Macao SAR Government, is a public organization of administration autonomy. The organization is responsible for the implementation of sport strategy and policy formulated by the Macao SAR Government. Its objective is to stimulate, encourage, and promote all kind of sports in Macao, also to create an essential condition for sport development.
For the development of competitive sports and ‘Sport for all’, the Macao Sport Development Board organizes various high level international sport competitions as well as recreational classes and thematic ‘Sport for all’ activities each year, in an endeavor to promote the international status of Macao, reinforce communication and co-operation with other countries and cites, enhance citizens’ quality of life and arouse their interest in sport, so as to accelerate and facilitate the enhancement of the level of sport in Macao.
For more information, please visit www.sport.gov.mo
About Golf Association of Macau
Founded in 2000, the Golf Association of Macao is a non-profit organization, with the mission to promote, support and ensure the quality, traditions and development of the game of golf in Macao.
With the mission to encourage and promote golf in Macao, it provides coaching, training and selection of the Macao teams for participation in international events at all levels, and promotes and runs appropriate international and domestic golfing events in Macao, which helps to represent Macao in the golfing world and be a member of appropriate regional and world governing bodies.
About The Venetian® Macao
Opened in 2007, The Venetian® Macao is Macao's first integrated resort featuring stunning replicas of the famous canals and architectural icons of Venice, Italy. The Venetian Macao features 3,000 suites, 1.2 million square feet (111,000 square metres) of convention and meeting facilities as well as a 15,000-seat Cotai Arena designed for world-class sports events and electrifying entertainment. The Venetian Macao is also home to the unique, 1,800-seat luxury Venetian Theatre, hosting the best in international and Chinese entertainment; more than 30 renowned restaurants; TAIVEXMALO Day Hospital & Spa; the incredibly fun QUBE indoor playground and more than 350 retailers at Shoppes at Venetian. Outdoor recreation areas include swimming pools and cabanas and a mini-golf course.
For more information, please visit www.venetianmacao.com.
About Sands Resorts Cotai Strip Macao – Sands China’s Integrated Resort City
Sands China Ltd. is the leading developer, owner and operator of integrated resorts in Macao. The befittingly named Sands Resorts Cotai Strip Macao, situated on reclaimed land between the islands of Coloane and Taipa, is the one destination that provides a stunning array of experiences at the heart of Cotai. Sands Resorts Cotai Strip Macao has transformed a day-trip market into an integrated resort city and international hub for business and leisure travellers.
Pulsating with life, both night and day, Sands Resorts Cotai Strip Macao features an expansive offering of affordable luxury available nowhere else in Macao, with approximately 9,000 hotel rooms and suites, international superstar live entertainment, duty-free shopping with more than 650 retailers offering an unparalleled array of name brands, 1.5 million square feet (120,000 square metres) of meeting and exhibition space for Asia’s leading conferences and exhibitions, transportation offerings and well over 120 dining options, including Michelin-starred restaurants, bars and lounges. Sands Resorts Cotai Strip Macao is a must-go destination providing every guest with an unforgettable experience and unparalleled excitement.
Comprised of The Venetian® Macao; The Plaza™ Macao, featuring the Four Seasons Hotel Macao, Cotai Strip; and Sands® Cotai Central, featuring the world’s largest Conrad, Sheraton, and Holiday Inn hotels Sands Resorts Cotai Strip Macao is where Asia’s ultimate destination is all within reach. And coming in 2016... the crowning achievement of Sheldon G. Adelson’s vision of the Cotai Strip… The Parisian Macao.
Sands Resorts Cotai Strip Macao… Be at the Centre of It All! For more information, please visit http://en.sandsresortsmacao.com.
About the 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 FENIX Golf (Official Apparel Supplier), Fuji Xerox (Official Office Solutions Partner), Hilton Worldwide (Official Hotel Partner), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Sponsor), Oakley (Official Eyewear and Footwear Sponsor), Srixon (Official Ball), Titleist (Official Web Partner) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). Sentosa, Singapore is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur. Also, visit us at www.asiantour.com, www.facebook.com/asiantourgolf, www.twitter.com/asiangolf, www.youtube.com/theasiantour, and www.weibo.com/asiantourgolf
About IMG
IMG is a global leader in sports, events, media and fashion, operating in more than 25 countries. The company represents and manages some of the world’s greatest sports figures and fashion icons; stages thousands of live events and branded entertainment experiences annually; and is the world’s largest independent producer and distributor of sports media. IMG also specializes in sports training; league development; and marketing, media and licensing for brands, sports organizations and collegiate institutions. In 2014, IMG was acquired by WME, the world’s leading entertainment agency, to form WME | IMG.