As Real as It Gets

Calvin Koh, Associate Director, Communications of Asian Tour, shares his favourite underdog stories regarding some of the Asian golf’s leading stars

Bowen Xiao, China Tour and Asian Tour full membership golfer

The Asian Tour will return to China for the inaugural Asia Pacific Classic, which is slated to take place at the St. Andrews Golf Club in Zhengzhou, Henan Province, from May 17 to 20.

The US$300,000 Asia Pacific Classic, co-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and the China Tour, will be promoted and operated by Beijing based promoter CGD (Beijing) Sports Industry Co., Ltd (CGDs).

The Asia Pacific Classic, which is the Tour’s second stop in China this season, will feature a 156-man field that comprises of 80 Asian Tour professionals and 70 players from the China Golf Association (CGA) and the China Tour, as well as six sponsor invites.

The tournament welcomes Rolex as its Official Timekeeper and is part of the Asian Tour’s strategic partnership with the CGA where the goal is to grow and develop professional golf in the region.

The champion of the Asia Pacific Classic will earn a one-year winner’s exemption on the Asian Tour while China Tour professionals, who join as associate members, will have their earnings counted towards the Asian Tour Habitat for Humanity Standings and the China Tour Order of Merit.

Pang Zheng, CGA Secretary-General, hailed the launch of the Asia Pacific Classic.

"The Asia Pacific Classic will present new opportunities for China golf and promote the growth of the game in Asia. It will be a great tournament and a truly competitive one for golf fans to enjoy as the players will do their best to challenge for the title," Pang said.

Asian Tour CEO Josh Burack expressed his deepest appreciation to the host venue, which has been a long-time partner of the CGA.

“The Asian Tour is excited to send our players to Henan Province to compete with the China Tour players at the Asia Pacific Classic.  The St. Andrews Golf Club has been hosting China Tour events for many years, so we are honoured to hold our tournament at their prestigious club which has been such a reliable partner of the CGA and Chinese golf.”

Fan Zhiqiang, Chairman of the St. Andrews Golf Club, is hopeful that the tournament will boost the golf industry in the region.

“We are committed to hosting professional golf tournaments and we will continue to help develop the Chinese golf and as well as sports industry. St. Andrews Golf Club welcomes all players to come, and enjoy the hospitality of the Central Plains,” he said.

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