(Macao, October 07, 2016) – A power packed line-up of Asian Tour stars will converge at next week’s The Venetian Macao Open 2016, with no fewer than 43 Tour winners, seven players from the current top-10 and five Order of Merit champions primed to battle for the title held by Australia’s Scott Hend.
With seven players from the current top 10 of the Asian Tour Order of Merit signed up for the Oct. 13 to 16 showpiece, this year’s US$1.1 million tournament is set to be one of the most exciting since it was inaugurated in 1998.
A staggering 133 wins have been amassed by the Tour winners who will tee up in Macao, led by Thai veteran star Thaworn Wiratchant, a former Macao Open champion himself and holder of a record 18 wins on the Asian Tour.
The region’s latest winners, Chan Shih-chang and Lu Wei-chih of Chinese Taipei along with India’s Gaganjeet Bhullar, will also contend for the Venetian Macao Open title.
India’s Anirban Lahiri, champion here in 2014 and runner-up in 2013 and last year, will be amongst the star attractions as he continues his comeback from an injury layoff. The reigning Asian Tour number one is tipped to contend as the challenging Macao venue – where he is now 47-under-par in the past three tournaments – always brings out the best in him.
“The Venetian Macao Open is one of my favourite stops on the Asian Tour and I guess that has something to do with me being able to play well there every year,” said the 28-year-old Indian, who has best rounds of a 61 and 62 over the picturesque Macao course.
“I’ve had a fair season with some good results (in the United States), but it will be wonderful to get another win at The Venetian Macao Open.”
With a winner’s cheque of US$198,000 on offer, the focus will be on the race for the coveted Order of Merit trophy. Big-hitting Hend currently leads the ranking with US$763,252, courtesy of two outstanding victories this season.
“Scott has been playing so well recently and he could be very hard to catch. However, if I can play well in the big events, it could all change,” said Wang, who is third on the Merit list with US$484,386.
“I’m still thinking about the Order of Merit title. There is still some golf to play for the rest of the season and as long as I have a chance, I will fight until the end.”
Rising Chinese Taipei star Chan, who like Hend has won twice on the Asian Tour this year, is tipped to feature on the leaderboard in Macao, which has been won previously by three of his compatriots, Chan Yih-shin, Lu Wen-teh and Wang Ter-chang.
South Africa’s world number 14 Branden Grace and flamboyant Englishman Ian Poulter will make their debuts at the Venetian Macao Open while Europe’s Ryder Cup captain Darren Clarke will also tee up at Macao Golf and Country Club for only the second time since his appearance at the event in 1999.
Canadian Jamie Sadlowski, who recently retired from Professional Long Drive competitions where he has routinely driven the ball over 400 yards, will also compete in Macao.
The Venetian Macao became title sponsor of the tournament in 2012 and since then, has seen it develop into one of the most prestigious professional golf tournaments in the region and offers the highest purse at US$1.1 million for a full-field Asian Tour event this year.
The 144-player championship is jointly organised by the Sports Bureau of Macao SAR Government (MSB) and the Golf Association of Macau. It is sanctioned by both the Asian Tour and the Golf Association of Macau, and promoted by IMG.
For more details on the Venetian Macao Open, please visit: www.thevenetianmacaoopen.com.
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About Sports Bureau of Macao SAR Government (MSB)
Sports Bureau of Macao SAR Government, 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’, Sports Bureau of Macao SAR Government 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 Macau 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; 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.
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 the opening of The Parisian Macao, it will have nearly 13,000hotel rooms and suites, international superstar live entertainment, duty-free shopping with more than 850 retailers offering an unparalleled array of name brands, meeting and exhibition space for Asia’s leading conferences and exhibitions, transportation offerings and well over 150 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; and Sands® Cotai Central, featuring the world’s largest Conrad, Sheraton, and St. Regis hotels as well as the Holiday Inn. 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. For more information, please visit ParisianMacao.com.
For more information about Sands Resorts Cotai Strip Macao, 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 ECCO (Official Footwear Sponsor), FENIX XCell (Official Apparel Supplier), Hilton Worldwide (Official Hotel Partner), Titleist (Official Web Partner), Bloomberg TV (Official International Media Sponsor), Bloomberg Businessweek Chinese (Official Business Publication Sponsor) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). Sentosa, Singapore is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.
IMG is a global leader in sports, events, media and fashion, operating in more than 30 countries. The company represents and manages some of the world’s greatest sports figures and fashion icons; stages hundreds of live events and branded entertainment experiences annually; and is one of the largest independent producers and distributors 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, a leading global entertainment agency.