Star gazing at Ballantine's Championship

Thu 18 Apr 2013

Star gazing at Ballantine's Championship

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Seoul, April 17: The region’s top stars are set to light up the scene when the sixth edition of the Ballantine’s Championship returns to the Blackstone Golf Club from April 25-28.
Past and present Asian Tour Order of Merit winners will vie for top honours at the €2.2 million  showpiece which will be the first event to be played in Korea on the Asian Tour this season.
Thailand’s Thongchai Jaidee, who holds the record of having won three Merit titles, will spearhead Asia’s charge alongside compatriot Thaworn Wiratchant, India’s Jeev Milkha Singh and China’s Liang Wen-chong at the Ballantine’s Championship which is sanctioned by the Asian Tour, European Tour and Korea PGA.
Current Asian Tour number one Kiradech Aphibarnrat of Thailand will also be seeking his second title of the season at the Ballantine’s Championship, which is one of two major Korean events held on the Asian Tour annually.
No fewer than 30 champions from the Asian Tour are also poised to battle against the heavyweights from the European Tour which will be headlined by 2010 Open Champion Louis Oosthuizen.
American Ryder Cup stars Dustin Johnson and Zach Johnson are also expected to feature prominently on the leaderboard.
So far, Thongchai and Australia’s Marcus Fraser remain as the only Asian Tour players to have won the Ballantine’s Championship in 2009 and 2010 respectively.
After suffering the disappointment of missing out on his third Masters appearance, Thongchai, a 13-time Asian Tour winner, will be looking to reignite his winning ambitions and reproduce his early season form where he enjoyed three successive top-10s in South Africa and the Middle East.
Singh, a two-time Asian Tour number one, is also hoping to add another title to his proud record of six Asian Tour titles and multiple victories on the Japan and European Tours, including last year’s Scottish Open.
Long regarded as the flag bearer for golf in India, Singh’s two Order of Merit triumphs came in 2006 and 2008 on the Asian Tour, which is celebrating its milestone 10th season in 2013.
Asian Tour honorary member, Y.E Yang of Korea can expect another rousing reception from the home fans as he bids to become the first Korean to win the Ballantine’s Championship which was won by Austrian Bernd Wiesberger last year. His best result was last year when he finished tied-15th.
The Korean, who is an Asian Tour honorary member, will be determined to celebrate his homecoming with another worthy performance befitting of his status as Asia’s first Major winner.
Other Asian Tour stars expected to feature prominently at the Ballantine’s Championship include India’s Anirban Lahiri and Gaganjeet Bhullar and, Australia’s Scott Hend.
The Ballantine’s Championship was established in 2008 and builds on Ballantine’s long-standing association with golf.
In addition to the Championship, Ballantine’s sponsors several top-flight players and events, as well as invests in grass-roots activity such as the Golf Fund in China and the Road to the Ballantine’s Championship in Korea.
About Ballantine’s
Ballantine’s is the No 2 ultra-premium Scotch whisky in Asia, No 1 Scotch whisky in Europe and the range sells over 70 million bottles a year worldwide. Ballantine’s has won more than 129 trophies and medals at international competitions in the past 10 years for quality, as a result of its unique richness of character and perfect balance. The range, from Ballantine’s Finest to the exclusive 40 Year Old, is the most extensive in the world of Scotch and is maintained by the latest in a tradition of Master Blenders that dates back to 1827.
•          Ballantine’s has been title sponsor of the Ballantine’s Championship since 2008
•          Ballantine’s is an official sponsor of the BMW Masters, The Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open & The World Cup of Golf
•          The first Ballantine’s sponsored golf tournament was played in 1960 at Wentworth Golf Club, England
About Chivas Brothers
Chivas Brothers is the Scotch whisky and premium gin business of Pernod Ricard – the world’s co-leader in wine and spirits. Chivas Brothers is the global leader in luxury Scotch whisky and premium gin. Its portfolio includes Chivas Regal, Ballantine’s, Beefeater Gin, The Glenlivet, Royal Salute, Aberlour, Plymouth gin, Longmorn, Scapa, 100 Pipers, Clan Campbell, Something Special and Passport Scotch.
About the Asian Tour
In 2013, the Asian Tour will celebrate a momentous milestone with its 10th season. 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 Abacus (Official Apparel Partner), BlackBerry (Official Communications Partner), Canon (Official Imaging Partner), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Supplier), Saxo Capital Markets (Official Statistics Partner), Singha Beer (Official Beer), Srixon (Official Ball), Starwood Hotels and Resorts (Official Hotels and Resorts) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). The Asian Tour has offices in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. Also, visit us at www.asiantour.com, www.facebook.com/asiantourgolf, www.twitter.com/asiantourgolf, www.youtube.com/theasiantour and www.weibo.com/asiantourgolf