Tour stars hail strategic partnership with CGA

Tue 21 Mar 2017

Tour stars hail strategic partnership with CGA

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Sentosa, Singapore, March 21: Asian Tour stars believe the recently-announced strategic partnership between the China Golf Association (CGA) and Asian Tour will be a massive boost for the growth and development of professional golf in the region.
Under this new and exciting collaboration, golfers will enjoy increased playing opportunities as the CGA and Asian Tour plan to stage up to four new events in China this year where earnings will count towards the Asian Tour Order of Merit and China Tour Order of Merit.
Indian ace Jeev Milkha Singh, a two-time Asian Tour Order of Merit champion and a winner in China previously, expressed his excitement over the milestone partnership which was signed in Shanghai last Friday.
“This is great news. This is not only a good thing for the Asian Tour but it will also benefit the golf scene in China. I am sure golf in the region will grow stronger from this partnership, especially with the increased playing opportunities for players.
“Winning the 2006 Volvo China Open was one of the sweetest moments I had in my career. It was a turning point for me and it will always be special. I have a lot of good memories in China and I am looking forward to going back again,” said the 45-year-old Singh.
“Winning the 2006 Volvo China Open was one of the sweetest moments I had in my career. It was a turning point for me and it will always be special. I have a lot of good memories in China and I am looking forward to going back again." - Jeev Milkha Singh

“I remembered those days when I played in China. Not many people knew about golf then. But things are really very different now. The golf scene in China has improved a lot over the years. There are many world-class courses in China now.
“When I played there years ago, Zhang (Lian-wei) was one of the few active Chinese players on Tour. It’s good to see a lot of talented players around now like Liang Wen-chong, Wu Ashun, Li Haotong and many more,” Singh added.
Fello Indian Rahil Gangjee, 38, was equally thrilled with the new tie-up, which will see the Asian Tour returning to China for co-sanctioned events with the CGA after a nine-year gap. It also brought back fond memories of his breakthrough Asian Tour victory in China some 13 years ago.
Prom Meesawat of Thailand Prom Meesawat of Thailand
“When I found out that we are going back to China, I recalled a lot of happy memories from my win in Beijing and I was also excited because there are many good courses in China now. I am hopeful the tournaments will grow in strength over the coming years,” said Gangjee.
Thailand’s Prom Meesawat, a two-time Asian Tour champion, also praised the new partnership. “It’s good to see the Asian Tour working with CGA again to create more playing opportunities for players.
“I hope this relationship can become stronger and the tournaments will be successful. I missed playing in China. It has been a long time since I last played an Asian Tour event there,” said the 32-year-old Prom.
Australian Marcus Both commented: "I think it fantastic that the CGA and Asian Tour have signed a strategic partnership agreement. It's paves the way for a real growth of the game in Asia with more opportunities for members of both tours to compete and for tournament sponsors to expand their footprint. It's a win-win for all involved."
"I can't wait to get the opportunity to play in China again. I've always loved playing the immaculately presented courses and really enjoyed experiencing their culture and new destinations. Personally, winning the Sanya Open in 2003 provided a springboard to my professional career and gave me the opportunity to play more Asian Tour events after attending Qualifying School at the start of that year," added the 37-year-old Both.
Other Asian Tour stalwarts such as Anirban Lahiri, the Order of Merit winner in 2015 and Korean rising star Jeunghun Wang took to Twitter to express their delight.



Golfers from the China Tour will be eligible to take up associate memberships with the Asian Tour, with the top-five non-exempt players from the China Tour Order of Merit receiving spots in the Final Stage of the Asian Tour Qualifying School in 2018.
Winners of these new co-sanctioned tournaments in China will also earn exemptions on the Asian Tour under the winner’s category.
The prize purses of the new events will range from US$300,000 to US$500,000 and more CGA and Asian Tour co-sanctioned tournaments will be staged from 2018 and beyond.
About 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 ECCO (Official Footwear Sponsor), FENIX XCell (Official Apparel Supplier), Titleist (Official Web Partner), Bloomberg TV (Official International Media Partner), Bloomberg Businessweek Chinese (Official International Media Partner) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). Sentosa, Singapore is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.
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