November 2017 | Asian Tour

Atwal fires sparkling 62 to take charge at AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open


Mauritius, November 30: Arjun Atwal of India fired a superb nine-under-par 62 without playing a practice round to lead by four shots on the first day at the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open on Thursday. 

The former Asian Tour number one posted a flawless round highlighted by seven birdies and one eagle to hold a commanding lead over Miguel Tabuena of the Philippines, Sebastian Heisele of Germany, Louis de Jager of South Africa and Adilson Da Silva of Brazil at the Heritage Golf Club.

Major champion Louis Oosthuizen and George Coetzee of South Africa, who won this event in 2015, were bunched up in tied sixth place on matching 67s at the €1million (approximately US$1.07 million) event sanctioned by the Asian Tour, Sunshine Tour and European Tour.

Atwal, who is the Captain for Team Asia at the 2018 EurAsia Cup, arrived late Wednesday evening after traveling 16 hours via Dubai from Kuala Lumpur where he attended a press conference to announce his team for the match-play event against Europe next year.

The 44-year-old exceeded his own expectations by shooting 31 in each half with the highlight of his day coming on the 14th hole where he sank a huge 25-foot eagle putt. His score of 62 is also the new course record at the Heritage Golf Club.

The 23-year-old Tabuena put on a battling performance and is on a mission to erase the heartbreak of missing out on a second Asian Tour title at the Resorts World Manila Masters three weeks ago where he bogeyed the last hole to miss the play-off.

Did you know? 

  • Atwal replaced the course record of 65 set by Coetzee, Jeunghun Wang of Korea, Carlos Pigem of Spain and Thorbjorn Olesen of Denmark in 2015.
  • The last time Atwal shot a 62 was in the opening round of the 2005 Indonesia Open. The score remains his lowest on the Asian Tour.
  • He took advantage of a hot putter in the opening round where he totalled 26 putts which included 10 one putts.
  • Atwal is an eight-time Asian Tour champion but his last victory was at the 2014 Dubai Open. He also won the Order of Merit in 2003.
  • Atwal holds the distinction as the first Indian to win on the PGA Tour at the 2010 Wyndham Championship.
  • The last time he played at the Heritage course was in 2015 where he missed the cut. He finished tied 27th last year but on a different golf course.
  • Atwal is currently ranked 55th on the Order of Merit. He needs a good result this week to stay inside the top-60 at the end of the 2017 to retain his full Asian Tour card.
  • Tabuena is one of the rising stars on the Asian Tour. He is enjoying a superb 2017 season so far with two tied third results and one tied fifth finish. He won his first Asian Tour title in 2015.
  • He enjoyed a flawless first nine which included an eagle-three on the seventh hole. He traded three birdies against two bogeys on his homeward nine.
  • Tabuena missed only two fairways and three greens in regulation. He totalled 29 putts with a three-putt on the 18th hole being the highest. He bogeyed that hole.
  • Da Silva is searching for his first Asian Tour title. He traded seven birdies against two bogeys to give himself a battling chance this week.
  • He enjoyed a career high in 2016 when he was given the honour of striking the first tee shot at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro when golf made a return into the programme after 112 years.

Player interviews:

Arjun Atwal (Ind) – First Round 62 (-9)

I was in Kuala Lumpur the last two days to announce the players in Team Asia for the EurAsia Cup and I had some media activities to do. I had no practice round and straight on the first tee.

I’m pleased and shocked. I took a very long route coming here. I came through Dubai and it took me 16 hours to get here. I was tired and I didn’t really expect anything. Sometimes when you don’t expect much, you get a lot out of it.

I missed two or three fairways but for most of the part I kept the ball in front of me. I played here two years ago but I don’t really remember the course. I made a few putts and every time you want to shoot low, that’s what you have to do.

I found it pretty tough out there but I didn’t make any mistakes and I had a hot putter. The wind was on and off. It wasn’t very gusty. I’m looking forward to some rest and see what happens tomorrow.

It is very important to play a practice round if you haven’t played the course before. It is kind of important but not the end of the world especially for a guy who has played enough golf in his life.

Miguel Tabuena (Phi) – First Round 66 (-5)

I made a terrible error on 17. Three putting is not the best thing to do but I came back strong. I put myself in position to make birdie and I made it. It was a bit gusty today.

I’ve been striking the ball really well the past few weeks but I wasn’t happy with my putting in Hong Kong last week. I changed putter and it is working this week.

You can’t hit it too high here. If you do that, the wind will take it away. This is a thinking golf course. You can’t blink or it will bite you.

I’m really motivated to bounce back from my defeat at the Resorts World Manila Masters three weeks ago. I would be okay if I bogeyed the hole if I was in a bad position but I was in a good position. I made a mental error and it hit me in the gut. I’ve put the defeat behind me and there’s still a lot of golf to be played this week.

Eagle on the fifth hole: Hit a nine-iron from 171 yards and holed a six feet eagle putt.

Adilson Da Silva (Bra) – First Round 66 (-5)

I didn’t hit the ball that great but I chipped and putt really well. I was really happy on the greens. My chip and putt saved me and that’s how I put a good score together.

It was a nice finish on 18. I didn’t know what to do and in the end I decided to give it a go and hit a good approach to three feet. That helped.

The course and greens are so good. If you can keep the ball in play you can give yourself a lot of chances. The wind slowed down a bit later this afternoon.

This is a beautiful place. It is like playing golf in paradise. The layout of the course is so beautiful and it suits my eye for some reason. I like playing on this golf course and that makes a big difference.

Louis De Jager (Rsa) – First Round 66 (-5)

I’m pleased with the score today. It was quite calm this morning, so the score was up there. First and last holes I made two bogies, but the 16 holes in between I played lovely, so I’m really pleased.

My putting has improved a lot the last few weeks. I’ve worked a lot on my putting, so that was really good. I saw all the lines nicely and I hit the ball well, I drove it nicely, so that helps. It’s a good combination to have.

The greens are rolling very nicely. They have a good speed, a comfortable speed, so you can really give the birdie putts a bit of a go. They are very true. What you see is what they usually do.

It’s not the narrowest course, so if you just give yourself enough opportunities on the greens. It gets quite windy, so if you get the wind right on the shots you should be fine.

It’s always a special place to come to, so we’re really enjoying it. It’s nice and hot and humid. I’ll go for a swim this afternoon.

Sebastian Heisele (Ger) – First Round 66 (-5)

I’m very pleased with my round. My front nine was a bit of a nightmare to be honest. I didn’t really feel too comfortable but slowly found something that worked for me. I got going on the back nine and pleased to pick up five shots on the back.

I was pulling my shots left as in far left and that made it hard. I feel that the back nine is easier than the front. When you are not feeling it and when you are looking down the fairway and see the bushes along the fairway, you just don’t feel comfortable.

I felt that I’ve been hitting the ball well all of this week. I had a few days off after a long stretch in the last season so I came out here without much expectation. My score surprised me and it also surprised me that I was hitting so badly earlier today but I’m happy I got it back.

Leading first round scores:

62 – Arjun ATWAL (IND)

66 – Sebastian HEISELE (GER) , Louis DE JAGER (RSA) , Miguel TABUENA (PHI) , Adilson Da SILVA (BRA) , Ockie STRYDOM (RSA)

67 – Joel STALTER (FRA) , Romain LANGASQUE (FRA) , Pontus WIDEGREN (SWE) , George COETZEE (RSA) , Louis OOSTHUIZEN (RSA) , Jbe KRUGER (RSA) , Oliver BEKKER (RSA) , Teaghan GAUCHE (RSA) , Anders HANSEN (DEN) , Marcus KINHULT (SWE) , Jason KNUTZON (USA) , Dylan FRITTELLI (RSA) , Laurie CANTER (ENG)

68 – Justin WALTERS (RSA) , Adrien SADDIER (FRA) , Sam HORSFIELD (ENG) , Jacques KRUYSWIJK (RSA) , Masahiro KAWAMURA (JPN) , Ricardo GOUVEIA (POR) , Shubhankar SHARMA (IND) , Andrea PAVAN (ITA) , Jarin TODD (USA) , Richard MCEVOY (ENG) , Jose-Filipe LIMA (POR) , Pep ANGLES (ESP) , Casey O’TOOLE (USA)

69 – Raphael JACQUELIN (FRA) , Suradit YONGCHAROENCHAI (THA) , Douglas MCGUIGAN (RSA) , Andrew CURLEWIS (RSA) , Johannes VEERMAN (USA) , Mark WILLIAMS (ZIM) , Jaco PRINSLOO (RSA) , Haydn PORTEOUS (RSA) , S.S.P CHAWRASIA (IND) , Matthieu PAVON (FRA) , Shiv KAPUR (IND) , James MORRISON (ENG) , Jaco AHLERS (RSA)

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 Rolex (Official Timekeeper), Panasonic (Official Consumer Electronics), 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), Wall Street Journal (Official International Media Partner) and Sentosa in Singapore which is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.

Please visit us at:

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Mauritius, November 30: Arjun Atwal of India fired a superb nine-under-par 62 without playing a practice round to lead by four shots on the first day at the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open on Thursday. 

The former Asian Tour number one posted a flawless round highlighted by seven birdies and one eagle to hold a commanding lead over Miguel Tabuena of the Philippines, Sebastian Heisele of Germany, Louis de Jager of South Africa and Adilson Da Silva of Brazil at the Heritage Golf Club.

Major champion Louis Oosthuizen and George Coetzee of South Africa, who won this event in 2015, were bunched up in tied sixth place on matching 67s at the €1million (approximately US$1.07 million) event sanctioned by the Asian Tour, Sunshine Tour and European Tour.

Atwal, who is the Captain for Team Asia at the 2018 EurAsia Cup, arrived late Wednesday evening after traveling 16 hours via Dubai from Kuala Lumpur where he attended a press conference to announce his team for the match-play event against Europe next year.

The 44-year-old exceeded his own expectations by shooting 31 in each half with the highlight of his day coming on the 14th hole where he sank a huge 25-foot eagle putt. His score of 62 is also the new course record at the Heritage Golf Club.

The 23-year-old Tabuena put on a battling performance and is on a mission to erase the heartbreak of missing out on a second Asian Tour title at the Resorts World Manila Masters three weeks ago where he bogeyed the last hole to miss the play-off.

Did you know? 

  • Atwal replaced the course record of 65 set by Coetzee, Jeunghun Wang of Korea, Carlos Pigem of Spain and Thorbjorn Olesen of Denmark in 2015.
  • The last time Atwal shot a 62 was in the opening round of the 2005 Indonesia Open. The score remains his lowest on the Asian Tour.
  • He took advantage of a hot putter in the opening round where he totalled 26 putts which included 10 one putts.
  • Atwal is an eight-time Asian Tour champion but his last victory was at the 2014 Dubai Open. He also won the Order of Merit in 2003.
  • Atwal holds the distinction as the first Indian to win on the PGA Tour at the 2010 Wyndham Championship.
  • The last time he played at the Heritage course was in 2015 where he missed the cut. He finished tied 27th last year but on a different golf course.
  • Atwal is currently ranked 55th on the Order of Merit. He needs a good result this week to stay inside the top-60 at the end of the 2017 to retain his full Asian Tour card.
  • Tabuena is one of the rising stars on the Asian Tour. He is enjoying a superb 2017 season so far with two tied third results and one tied fifth finish. He won his first Asian Tour title in 2015.
  • He enjoyed a flawless first nine which included an eagle-three on the seventh hole. He traded three birdies against two bogeys on his homeward nine.
  • Tabuena missed only two fairways and three greens in regulation. He totalled 29 putts with a three-putt on the 18th hole being the highest. He bogeyed that hole.
  • Da Silva is searching for his first Asian Tour title. He traded seven birdies against two bogeys to give himself a battling chance this week.
  • He enjoyed a career high in 2016 when he was given the honour of striking the first tee shot at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro when golf made a return into the programme after 112 years.

Player interviews:

Arjun Atwal (Ind) – First Round 62 (-9)

I was in Kuala Lumpur the last two days to announce the players in Team Asia for the EurAsia Cup and I had some media activities to do. I had no practice round and straight on the first tee.

I’m pleased and shocked. I took a very long route coming here. I came through Dubai and it took me 16 hours to get here. I was tired and I didn’t really expect anything. Sometimes when you don’t expect much, you get a lot out of it.

I missed two or three fairways but for most of the part I kept the ball in front of me. I played here two years ago but I don’t really remember the course. I made a few putts and every time you want to shoot low, that’s what you have to do.

I found it pretty tough out there but I didn’t make any mistakes and I had a hot putter. The wind was on and off. It wasn’t very gusty. I’m looking forward to some rest and see what happens tomorrow.

It is very important to play a practice round if you haven’t played the course before. It is kind of important but not the end of the world especially for a guy who has played enough golf in his life.

Miguel Tabuena (Phi) – First Round 66 (-5)

I made a terrible error on 17. Three putting is not the best thing to do but I came back strong. I put myself in position to make birdie and I made it. It was a bit gusty today.

I’ve been striking the ball really well the past few weeks but I wasn’t happy with my putting in Hong Kong last week. I changed putter and it is working this week.

You can’t hit it too high here. If you do that, the wind will take it away. This is a thinking golf course. You can’t blink or it will bite you.

I’m really motivated to bounce back from my defeat at the Resorts World Manila Masters three weeks ago. I would be okay if I bogeyed the hole if I was in a bad position but I was in a good position. I made a mental error and it hit me in the gut. I’ve put the defeat behind me and there’s still a lot of golf to be played this week.

Eagle on the fifth hole: Hit a nine-iron from 171 yards and holed a six feet eagle putt.

Adilson Da Silva (Bra) – First Round 66 (-5)

I didn’t hit the ball that great but I chipped and putt really well. I was really happy on the greens. My chip and putt saved me and that’s how I put a good score together.

It was a nice finish on 18. I didn’t know what to do and in the end I decided to give it a go and hit a good approach to three feet. That helped.

The course and greens are so good. If you can keep the ball in play you can give yourself a lot of chances. The wind slowed down a bit later this afternoon.

This is a beautiful place. It is like playing golf in paradise. The layout of the course is so beautiful and it suits my eye for some reason. I like playing on this golf course and that makes a big difference.

Louis De Jager (Rsa) – First Round 66 (-5)

I’m pleased with the score today. It was quite calm this morning, so the score was up there. First and last holes I made two bogies, but the 16 holes in between I played lovely, so I’m really pleased.

My putting has improved a lot the last few weeks. I’ve worked a lot on my putting, so that was really good. I saw all the lines nicely and I hit the ball well, I drove it nicely, so that helps. It’s a good combination to have.

The greens are rolling very nicely. They have a good speed, a comfortable speed, so you can really give the birdie putts a bit of a go. They are very true. What you see is what they usually do.

It’s not the narrowest course, so if you just give yourself enough opportunities on the greens. It gets quite windy, so if you get the wind right on the shots you should be fine.

It’s always a special place to come to, so we’re really enjoying it. It’s nice and hot and humid. I’ll go for a swim this afternoon.

Sebastian Heisele (Ger) – First Round 66 (-5)

I’m very pleased with my round. My front nine was a bit of a nightmare to be honest. I didn’t really feel too comfortable but slowly found something that worked for me. I got going on the back nine and pleased to pick up five shots on the back.

I was pulling my shots left as in far left and that made it hard. I feel that the back nine is easier than the front. When you are not feeling it and when you are looking down the fairway and see the bushes along the fairway, you just don’t feel comfortable.

I felt that I’ve been hitting the ball well all of this week. I had a few days off after a long stretch in the last season so I came out here without much expectation. My score surprised me and it also surprised me that I was hitting so badly earlier today but I’m happy I got it back.

Leading first round scores:

62 – Arjun ATWAL (IND)

66 – Sebastian HEISELE (GER) , Louis DE JAGER (RSA) , Miguel TABUENA (PHI) , Adilson Da SILVA (BRA) , Ockie STRYDOM (RSA)

67 – Joel STALTER (FRA) , Romain LANGASQUE (FRA) , Pontus WIDEGREN (SWE) , George COETZEE (RSA) , Louis OOSTHUIZEN (RSA) , Jbe KRUGER (RSA) , Oliver BEKKER (RSA) , Teaghan GAUCHE (RSA) , Anders HANSEN (DEN) , Marcus KINHULT (SWE) , Jason KNUTZON (USA) , Dylan FRITTELLI (RSA) , Laurie CANTER (ENG)

68 – Justin WALTERS (RSA) , Adrien SADDIER (FRA) , Sam HORSFIELD (ENG) , Jacques KRUYSWIJK (RSA) , Masahiro KAWAMURA (JPN) , Ricardo GOUVEIA (POR) , Shubhankar SHARMA (IND) , Andrea PAVAN (ITA) , Jarin TODD (USA) , Richard MCEVOY (ENG) , Jose-Filipe LIMA (POR) , Pep ANGLES (ESP) , Casey O’TOOLE (USA)

69 – Raphael JACQUELIN (FRA) , Suradit YONGCHAROENCHAI (THA) , Douglas MCGUIGAN (RSA) , Andrew CURLEWIS (RSA) , Johannes VEERMAN (USA) , Mark WILLIAMS (ZIM) , Jaco PRINSLOO (RSA) , Haydn PORTEOUS (RSA) , S.S.P CHAWRASIA (IND) , Matthieu PAVON (FRA) , Shiv KAPUR (IND) , James MORRISON (ENG) , Jaco AHLERS (RSA)

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 Rolex (Official Timekeeper), Panasonic (Official Consumer Electronics), 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), Wall Street Journal (Official International Media Partner) and Sentosa in Singapore which is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.

Please visit us at:

www.asiantour.com

www.facebook.com/asiantourgolf

www.twitter.com/asiantourgolf

www.youtube.com/theasiantour

www.weibo.com/asiantourgolf


Singapore, November 30: Asian Tour Media clinched an award at the first night of the 22nd Asian Television Awards. The team won Best Live Sports Coverage for their work at the SMBC Singapore Open.
Asian Tour Media was nominated for the award along with six other broadcasters and producers from across Asia.
Launched in 1996, Asian Television Awards is the Asian TV industry’s most significant and celebrated event, recognising excellence in programming, production and performance.

Asian Tour Media Alastair Berry (second from left) and his team

Determined by an expert panel of over 60 judges from across the region, the results are tabulated and audited by international auditing firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, with the winners only announced during the Awards Ceremony.
The 2017 SMBC Singapore Open was held from January 19 to 22 at the Sentosa Golf Club. Prayad Marksaeng Thailand shot nine-under-par 275 to win the tournament by one shot.

Shah Alam, Malaysia, November 28: Team Asia Captain Arjun Atwal has announced a young and immensely talented team for the EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM with current Order of Merit leader Gavin Green, Kiradech Aphibarnrat, S.S.P. Chawrasia and Li Hao-tong representing Asia.

Thai teenager Phachara Khongwatmai, Poom Saksansin, Malaysia’s Green and India’s Chawrasia make up the leading four Asian players on the Order of Merit who qualified for Team Asia in the biennial event which will be played at Glenmarie Golf and Country Club from January 12 to 14, 2018.

Yuta Ikeda of Japan, ranked 37th on the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR), Li of China, Anirban Lahiri of India, the 2015 Asian Tour number one, and Kiradech of Thailand all earned their spot in Team Asia as the leading available Asians on the world ranking.

Korea’s Byeonghun An, who represented Team Asia in the second edition in 2016, will make his return to the team after being selected as a captain’s pick. Joining him as a captain’s wildcard are Hideto Tanihara of Japan and Nicholas Fung of Malaysia who will make their third appearance in the EurAsia Cup. Sunghoon Kang of Korea, a winner on the Asian Tour, will make his debut after being selected as the final captain’s pick.

Team Asia will have a combined total of 58 titles won worldwide while six players in the 12-man team are still in their 20s. Phachara is the youngest at 18 and Tanihara is the oldest at 39.

“I’m proud to announce my team which is predominantly represented by young players. Most of them are still in their 20s but they have achieved huge success at a young age and have established themselves in the game,” said Atwal.

“Seven players in my team are ranked inside the top-100 on the Official World Golf Ranking and this underlines the strength of Team Asia. This is a strong team and it will be our goal to win the EurAsia Cup.”

“We will face a strong Team Europe but I have faith in every member in my team. I’ve already mapped out a game plan to keep the players motivated and battle-ready when the tournament starts,” said Atwal.

The 23-year-old Green will represent Team Asia for the first time after a splendid 2017 season where he won his first Asian Tour title and finished runner-up three times.

“It is always nice playing in front of the home crowd. The EurAsia Cup is a huge thing and it is a totally different ball game as compared to a stroke-play event. It is a team event and everyone gathers like a big family. I hope a lot of Malaysian fans come out and support Team Asia,” said Green.

China’s Li will also make his first appearance in the team event, dubbed the ‘Ryder Cup of the East’. The supremely talented Chinese holds one victory on the European Tour and is currently ranked 57th in the world thanks to a third-place result at The Open.

Ikeda, the highest ranked player in Team Asia, has enjoyed a remarkable season in Japan where he won thrice while Kiradech is also coming off a solid 2017 where he finished second at the European Tour’s season-ending DP World Tour Champions and Italian Open.

Atwal will also rely on the experience of countrymen Lahiri, who represented Team Asia in the last two editions and Chawrasia who successfully defended the Hero Indian Open earlier this year.

“The knowledge of playing in team match-play is crucial and the experience of players like Lahiri, Chawrasia, An and Kiradech will be very important in the team. It is a nice mix of experienced and new players which have huge potential,” said Atwal.

Poom qualified for the team through the Order of Merit thanks to one victory and a runner-up result in Japan. The fearless Phachara, a two-time runner-up in 2017, is another new addition to team alongside Kang, who also finished second twice in the United States this year.

China’s Zhang Lian-wei has also been picked as Vice-Captain by Atwal to help him lead Team Asia against Thomas Bjorn’s Team Europe.

The EurAsia Cup will feature 24 matches, with day one showcasing six Fourball matches, followed by six Foursomes matches and 12 Singles matches on the third day.

Team Europe will feature Rafa Cabrera-Bello, Paul Casey, Paul Dunne, Ross Fisher, Matthew Fitzpatrick, Tommy Fleetwood, Tyrrell Hatton, Alex Levy, Alex Noren, Thomas Pieters, Henrik Stenson and Bernd Wiesberger.

Ends.

About DRB-HICOM

DRB-HICOM Berhad (“DRB-HICOM”) is one of Malaysia’s leading conglomerates with core businesses in the Automotive, Services & Education, as well as Property sectors. With more than 90 active companies in its stable and over 59,000 employees group-wide, DRB-HICOM’s aim is to continue adding value and propelling the nation’s development. In the Automotive sector, DRB-HICOM is involved in the manufacturing, assembly and distribution of passenger and commercial vehicles, including the national motorcycle. In Services & Education, DRB-HICOM is involved in various businesses, including concession and financial-related services. In Property, DRB-HICOM is involved in residential and commercial developments.

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 Rolex (Official Timekeeper), Panasonic (Official Consumer Electronics), 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), Wall Street Journal (Official International Media Partner) and Sentosa in Singapore which is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.

Please visit us at:

www.asiantour.com

www.facebook.com/asiantourgolf

www.twitter.com/asiantourgolf

www.youtube.com/theasiantour

www.weibo.com/asiantourgolf

About the European Tour

The European Tour celebrates men’s professional golf on a global stage. In 2017, the European Tour International Schedule features a minimum of 47 tournaments in 26 countries, including eight Rolex Series events, all part of the Race to Dubai. Celebrating the global connectivity of the European Tour and Dubai, the Race to Dubai is a season-long competition to crown the European Tour’s Number One player, an honour which in 2016 went to Sweden’s Henrik Stenson for the second time, and which since 2009 has also been achieved three times by Rory McIlroy, as well as by Lee Westwood, Martin Kaymer and Luke Donald. Formerly known as the Order of Merit, points are accumulated based on prize money won, with the top 10 ranked players at the end of the season sharing a $5million Race to Dubai bonus pool. Since its formation in 1972, the European Tour has witnessed 26 Members celebrate a total of 52 Major Championship titles between them, enjoyed ten Members attaining the pinnacle of World Number One and has celebrated its diversity as players from 36 different countries have won on the Tour. The European Tour also manages the Challenge Tour, which featured 28 tournaments in 22 countries in 2016, and the Senior Tour, which featured 13 tournaments in nine countries in 2016. It is also the Managing Partner of Ryder Cup Europe, the body which, alongside the PGA of America, administers golf’s greatest team contest, The Ryder Cup. The European Tour broadcasts live coverage of its tournaments to more than 490 million homes in more than 150 countries every week, generating in excess of 2,200 global broadcast hours for each event. It also enjoys the support of many of the world’s leading business brands with Rolex, BMW, Emirates and Titleist as Official Partners.

About MMC Corporation Berhad

MMC Corporation Berhad (MMC) is a leading utilities and infrastructure group with diversified businesses under three divisions, namely ports & logistics, energy & utilities and engineering & construction. Its key businesses under the Ports and Logistics division include the operations of Port of Tanjung Pelepas Sdn Bhd, Johor Port Berhad, Northport (Malaysia) Bhd, Penang Port Sdn Bhd, Kontena Nasional Berhad and JP Logistics. Internationally, MMC has an associate stake in Red Sea Gateway Terminal Company Limited, a container port terminal within the Jeddah Islamic Port, Saudi Arabia. Under the Energy & Utilities division, MMC is the single largest shareholder of both Malakoff Corporation Berhad and Gas Malaysia Berhad. MMC’s Engineering & Construction division has further established itself in the sector with a leading role as the Project Delivery Partner (PDP) and underground works package contractor for the 51km Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit (KVMRT) project (Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line) and Line 2 project (Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya Line). Prior to this, MMC has successfully completed the 329km Ipoh-Padang Besar Electrified Double Tracking Project as well as the innovative Stormwater Management and Road Tunnel (SMART) motorway, the first-of-its-kind dual-purpose tunnel in the world. MMC continues to make inroads in the construction industry, securing key civil and infrastructure projects in the country namely Langat Centralised Sewerage Treatment Plant, Langat 2 Water Treatment Plant, civil and infrastructure works for RAPID Pengerang Cogeneration Plant. Additionally, MMC has a 20% effective interest in Borneo Highway PDP Sdn Bhd (BHP) which has been appointed as PDP for the Sabah Pan Borneo Highway Project. In other businesses, MMC owns Aliran Ihsan Resources Berhad, a water treatment plant operator and Senai Airport Terminal Services Sdn Bhd, the operator of Senai International Airport in Johor Bahru; a major aviation hub and the main air transportation gateway to Iskandar Malaysia. Additionally, MMC’s Group Property arm manages close to 6,000 acres of industrial developments in Iskandar Malaysia, Johor and Kulim, Kedah, namely Senai Airport City, Tanjung Bin Petrochemical & Maritime Industrial Centre (TBPMIC) and Northern Technocity in Kulim. The Senai Airport City, TBPMIC and NTC (NTC) developments come under the ambit of Group Property’s three operating companies – Senai Airport City Sdn Bhd, Seaport Worldwide Sdn Bhd and Northern Technocity Sdn Bhd respectively.

 


November 27: Arjun Atwal of India, the captain for Team Asia in the 2018 EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM, visited the Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak to give an update on the team match-play event which will be played at the Glenmarie Golf and Country Club from January 12 to 14, 2018.

Also joining him in the session are (from left to right in the photo titled Arjun Atwal visiting the Malaysian Prime Minister) Mahmood Abdul Razak, Group Head Strategic Communications Division, DRB-HICOM, Tun Ahmad Sarji bin Abdul Hamid, Chairman of the Local Organising Committee, PGM, Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, Arjun Atwal, Josh Burack, Asian Tour Chief Executive Officer and Datuk Mohamed Razeek Md Hussain, Chief Operating Officer, Services, Education and Defence, DRB-HICOM.


Sentosa, Singapore, November 24: The Asian Tour has released the first part of its 2018 season schedule in what promises to be the most robust year of playing opportunities for its members since 2008.

The 2018 schedule will feature at least six new tournaments with two events added in Korea, the ISPS Handa New Zealand Open, the Philippine Golf Championship and a minimum of two tournaments planned in China.

In the first five months of 2018, the Asian Tour will be staging 12 events across 11 countries.  This is two more than the 10 events held in 2017, over the same period.

The 2018 Asian Tour season tees off in Thailand, where the annual Qualifying School will be held. At the end of the event, the top-35 finishers and ties will earn Asian Tour cards. At the same time, 12 of Asia’s leading players will represent Team Asia against Team Europe in Malaysia at the EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM which will be played at the Glenmarie Golf and Country Club.

This biennial event is a team match-play tournament which boasts a massive US$4.8 million purse and is the Asian Tour and European Tour’s cousin event of Ryder Cup.

In the previous edition, Team Europe won the contest in dominant fashion while Team Asia forced a dramatic 10-10 draw in the first edition in 2014. Come January 2018, Team Asia, captained by Arjun Atwal, will be looking to exact revenge against a strong European team, led by Ryder Cup Captain Thomas Bjorn. The EurAsia Cup will be hosted at Glenmarie Golf and Country Club in Kuala Lumpur from January 12 to 14.

Also in January, the top players from the Asian Tour and the Japan Golf Tour will be competing for a US$1 million purse at the SMBC Singapore Open. The star-studded field will include Masters Tournament winner, Sergio Garcia.

Next, the circuit heads to Myanmar for the US$750,000 LeoPalace21 Myanmar Open which is the second consecutive co-sanctioned tournament between the Asian Tour and Japan Golf Tour, before heading southward to Malaysia for the lucrative US$3 million Maybank Championship.

The Tour will swing over to Oceania for two events at the ISPS HANDA World Super 6 Perth and the ISPS Handa New Zealand Open, a new addition to the Asian Tour schedule.

Members from the Asian Tour will be competing at the ISPS Handa New Zealand Open and prize money earned will count towards the Asian Tour Order of Merit race. The tournament will be the first on the Asian Tour that is played over a pro-am format, contested by top professional golfers, amateurs, as well as celebrity players.

Following New Zealand, the Asian Tour will head to South Asia for the US$1.75 million Indian Open.  The following week, the Asian Tour will welcome another new tournament to its schedule, the US$1.5 million Philippine Golf Championship.

This tournament, as well as the ISPS HANDA World Super 6 Perth, Maybank Championship and Indian Open, are co-sanctioned with the European Tour. A significant number of co-sanctioned tournaments have been planned for the rest of the year, reinforcing the Strategic Alliance between the Asian Tour and European Tour.

Then from mid-April to early May, the Asian Tour features an East Asian swing to Chinese Taipei, Japan and Korea.

The Yeangder Heritage is a full-field Asian Tour event held in Chinese Taipei with a prize purse of US$300,000.  The following week sees the Asian Tour touch down in the Land of the Rising Sun for the Panasonic Open Championship. This tournament offers ¥


* Newly crowned Race to Dubai winner Tommy Fleetwood leads the ten automatic qualifiers

* Paul Casey and Alex Levy named as the two wildcards by Captain Thomas Bjørn

Kuala Lumpur, November 23: A full house of 12 European Tour winners, incorporating the 2016 Open Champion and six Ryder Cup players, make up the European Team named today for next year’s EurAsia Cup presented by DRB-HICOM in Malaysia.

Led by Thomas Bjørn – eight months before he also captains Europe in The Ryder Cup in France – the European Team will tackle Asia in the third staging of the biennial contest, which will once again take place at the Glenmarie Golf and Country Club in Kuala Lumpur from January 12-14, 2018.

Europe will be looking to retain the trophy they won in convincing fashion by 18 ½ – 5 ½ in 2016, but will face a strong Asian team on home soil captained, for the first time, by India’s Arjun Atwal.

Leading the ten automatic qualifiers from the 2017 Race to Dubai Rankings is Englishman Tommy Fleetwood, who finished European Number One after a thrilling end to the season last weekend at the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai.

Joining Fleetwood as automatic qualifiers are his fellow Englishmen Tyrrell Hatton, Ross Fisher and Matthew Fitzpatrick, Spain’s Rafa Cabrera-Bello, Austria’s Bernd Wiesberger, Ireland’s Paul Dunne, Belgium’s Thomas Pieters, and the Swedish duo of Alex Noren and Henrik Stenson.

Completing the European Team are the two wildcard selections named by Captain Bjørn, Englishman Paul Casey and Alex Levy of France.

Casey will bring vital experience of the match play realm through his Ryder Cup appearances which included being part of Europe’s back-to-back nine-point triumphs in 2004 and 2006, while Levy will bring his own particular brand of French flair, with golf fans in his home country hoping that he can go on to become the fourth Frenchman to play in The Ryder Cup in his home country next September.

Captain Bjørn, who played in the inaugural EurAsia Cup match in 2014 which ended in a 10-10 tie, said: “The interest from the players has been very strong and you can see that from the fact that the ten automatic qualifiers come from within the top 20 of the final Race to Dubai Rankings. That is a good indication of what the EurAsia Cup is becoming, and I think European golf is in a great place right now.

“I’m very encouraged by the make-up of the team and we are strong from 1 through to 12. I have some great experience in terms of six players who have experienced Ryder Cups, as well as the 2016 Open Champion in Henrik. But I also have some exciting young talent led by Tommy and Tyrrell.

“Obviously Tommy has had an amazing year and deserved to be crowned European Tour Number One last weekend. But Tyrrell has also had a great season, the highlights of which were his back-to-back wins in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship and the Italian Open last month.

“As captain, I am looking forward to seeing how all 12 deliver on this particular stage. It’s a different kind of format to what they are used to week‑in, week‑out, so it will be interesting to see how they react to that environment.

“It’s a great honour for me to be captain and I’m looking forward to going to Malaysia in January to face what I know will be a very strong Asian team. We want to win the EurAsia Cup again and I believe we are going with a team very capable of doing that.”

Captain Bjørn also expanded on the reasons behind choosing Paul Casey and Alex Levy as his two wild card selections.

“It was a really hard task because there are so many good European players to choose from,” said the Dane. “All have legitimate claims and all are well qualified to be on this team, so it was a tough choice to have to make. But in the end, I went for Paul and Alex.

“Once Paul announced he was rejoining the European Tour, and therefore making himself available for selection, that decision was a no-brainer for me. He is a wonderful player with a lot of experience and I think the young guys can learn a lot from him.

“He’s also got a fantastic match play record and not just in Ryder Cups. He is comfortable with where he is in his life right now and him wanting to part of the EurAsia Cup team also shows his commitment to the European Tour and the road he is now on.

“Following on from that, I picked Alex as he is a player that has impressively risen through the ranks in the past few years. He has wonderful French character and flair as well as a lot of attitude and passion for the game. He is also very consistent which can be a great asset in match play.

“I have assembled a team which will hopefully go out and retain the EurAsia Cup, but I also have one eye on next September and selecting Alex will give him a feeling of being part of what a team event feels like, as I know it’s very much on his mind to try and make The Ryder Cup Team.

“Therefore, to get him into the fold, help him develop, and give him great opportunities for the future is important. But this is also deserved for what he’s delivered over the past couple of years. He got very close to qualifying for the team automatically and I think he definitely deserves his chance.”

The line-ups for the third EurAsia Cup will be completed on Tuesday November 28 when Arjun Atwal names his Asian team.

Broadcast footage of Captain Bjørn discussing Team Europe can be viewed and downloaded by following this link: https://mediahub.europeantour.com

NAME, COUNTRY and                      AGE          EUROPEAN                    RYDER CUP                 EURASIA CUP

RACE TO DUBAI FINISH                                      TOUR WINS               APPEARANCES              APPEARANCES         

Rafa Cabrera-Bello (Spain) (7)      33                        3                                              1                              0

               

Paul Casey (England) (N/A)           40                         13                                           3                              0

 

Paul Dunne (Ireland) (16)               24*                       1                                              0                              0

 

Ross Fisher (England) (6)                37                         5                                              1                              1                                             

Matt Fitzpatrick (England) (12)     23                         4                                              1                              1                                                             

Tommy Fleetwood (England) (1)  26                        3                                              0                              0

 

Tyrrell Hatton (England) (5)           26                         3                                              0                              0

 

Alex Levy (France) (21)                    27                         4                                              0                              0

 

Alex Noren (Sweden) (8)               35                         9                                              0                              0

 

Thomas Pieters (Belgium) (20)     25                         3                                              1                              0

 

Henrik Stenson (Sweden) (15)     41                         11                                           4                              0

 

Bernd Wiesberger (Austria) (14) 32                          4                                              0                              1

 

 

Captain

Thomas Bjørn (Denmark)               46                         15                                           3                              1

 

* Paul Dunne will be 25 on November 26

 

About DRB-HICOM

DRB-HICOM Berhad (“DRB-HICOM”) is one of Malaysia’s leading conglomerates with core businesses in the Automotive, Services & Education, as well as Property sectors. With more than 90 active companies in its stable and over 59,000 employees group-wide, DRB-HICOM’s aim is to continue adding value and propelling the nation’s development. In the Automotive sector, DRB-HICOM is involved in the manufacturing, assembly and distribution of passenger and commercial vehicles, including the national motorcycle. In Services & Education, DRB-HICOM is involved in various businesses, including concession and financial-related services. In Property, DRB-HICOM is involved in residential and commercial developments.

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 Rolex (Official Timekeeper), Panasonic (Official Consumer Electronics), 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), Wall Street Journal (Official International Media Partner) and Sentosa in Singapore which is the Home of the Asian Tour which also has an office in Kuala Lumpur.

Please visit us at:

www.asiantour.com

www.facebook.com/asiantourgolf

www.twitter.com/asiantourgolf

www.youtube.com/theasiantour

www.weibo.com/asiantourgolf

About MMC Corporation Berhad

MMC Corporation Berhad (MMC) is a leading utilities and infrastructure group with diversified businesses under three divisions, namely ports & logistics, energy & utilities and engineering & construction. Its key businesses under the Ports and Logistics division include the operations of Port of Tanjung Pelepas Sdn Bhd, Johor Port Berhad, Northport (Malaysia) Bhd, Penang Port Sdn Bhd, Kontena Nasional Berhad and JP Logistics. Internationally, MMC has an associate stake in Red Sea Gateway Terminal Company Limited, a container port terminal within the Jeddah Islamic Port, Saudi Arabia. Under the Energy & Utilities division, MMC is the single largest shareholder of both Malakoff Corporation Berhad and Gas Malaysia Berhad. MMC’s Engineering & Construction division has further established itself in the sector with a leading role as the Project Delivery Partner (PDP) and underground works package contractor for the 51km Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit (KVMRT) project (Sungai Buloh-Kajang Line) and Line 2 project (Sungai Buloh-Serdang-Putrajaya Line). Prior to this, MMC has successfully completed the 329km Ipoh-Padang Besar Electrified Double Tracking Project as well as the innovative Stormwater Management and Road Tunnel (SMART) motorway, the first-of-its-kind dual-purpose tunnel in the world. MMC continues to make inroads in the construction industry, securing key civil and infrastructure projects in the country namely Langat Centralised Sewerage Treatment Plant, Langat 2 Water Treatment Plant, civil and infrastructure works for RAPID Pengerang Cogeneration Plant. Additionally, MMC has a 20% effective interest in Borneo Highway PDP Sdn Bhd (BHP) which has been appointed as PDP for the Sabah Pan Borneo Highway Project. In other businesses, MMC owns Aliran Ihsan Resources Berhad, a water treatment plant operator and Senai Airport Terminal Services Sdn Bhd, the operator of Senai International Airport in Johor Bahru; a major aviation hub and the main air transportation gateway to Iskandar Malaysia. Additionally, MMC’s Group Property arm manages close to 6,000 acres of industrial developments in Iskandar Malaysia, Johor and Kulim, Kedah, namely Senai Airport City, Tanjung Bin Petrochemical & Maritime Industrial Centre (TBPMIC) and Northern Technocity in Kulim. The Senai Airport City, TBPMIC and NTC (NTC) developments come under the ambit of Group Property’s three operating companies – Senai Airport City Sdn Bhd, Seaport Worldwide Sdn Bhd and Northern Technocity Sdn Bhd respectively.

 

 

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