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PGA Tour Announces Asian Stop for 2010
The PGA Tour and Asian Tour have announced they will stage the Asia Pacific Golf Classic at the Mines Resort & Golf Club in Kuala Lumpur as part of the 2010 PGA Tour late-season calendar. The dates for the event will be revealed at a later time.
This long-term agreement represents the PGA Tour's first multi-year tournament agreement in Southeast Asia. The inaugural Asia Pacific Golf Classic, Malaysia 2010 will feature an international field of 40 players competing at the Mines 7,280-yard, par 72 Robert Trent Jones Jr. golf course for a $6 million purse, with $1 million going to the winner. It will be part of the Tour's international television distribution package that has an international audience of over 450 million households around the world across 200 countries in 34 different languages.
The top 25 players from the PGA Tour's final FedEx Cup standings will automatically qualify, as will the top-10 available players from the Asian Tour's Order of Merit. The field will be filled by five sponsor exemptions. At least one Malaysian professional will be guaranteed a place in the field.
Details of the tournament were revealed during a press conference at the Mines Resort & Golf Club that included Malaysian Prime Minister, Y.A.B. Dato' Sri Mohd Najib Bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak; YBhg Tan Sri Lee Kim Yew, founder of the Mines; Matthew Rapp, Vice President Business Development, PGA Tour, Htwe Hla Han, Senior Director, Tour Development; and Keld Kristiansen, Executive Chairman of Carbon Worldwide.
"Malaysia is rapidly emerging as Asia's leading golf destination, with over 200 golf courses currently available around the country. It has bloomed as the ideal destination for combining a memorable vacation with an exciting game of golf; and the hosting of a PGA Tour event is testimony to Malaysia's strong golfing heritage," said Prime Minister Razak. He emphasized the importance of having such world-class events in Malaysia to enhance the country's standing in the international sporting arena.
"With a purse money of $6 million and the US PGA Tour commitment, I am confident that together, we can make this a great event in the Asia Pacific," said Yew.
Han said the Asian Tour was looking forward to its first collaboration with the PGA Tour and expressed appreciation toward the government of Malaysia, the Mines Resort and Carbon Worldwide for initiating the new and exciting tournament. "The launch of the Asia Pacific Golf Classic, Malaysia 2010 will create a wonderful opportunity for 10 Asian Tour stars to take on the elite players from the PGA Tour," he said.
Speaking on behalf of the PGA Tour, Rapp added, "This is indeed very exciting for the PGA Tour to be able to venture into Southeast Asia, an opportunity made possible through the commitment shown by the Malaysian government, the organizational capabilities of Carbon Worldwide and PGA Promotions of Malaysia, and access to a world-class golf facility in the Mines Resort & Golf Club. Southeast Asia has great potential for burgeoning growth in golf, and we are extremely pleased to take this significant first step into the marketplace."