Friday, September 19, 2014

Guan Tianlang for CIMB Classic

THE CIMB Classic will also welcome its first Chinese national after 15-year-old Guan Tianlang (pic) accepted a sponsor’s invite to compete at the Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club (KLGCC) on Oct 30 to Nov 2.
    Malaysia will have two representatives - Danny Chia who won the SapuraKencana National Qualifier, and the other spot going to the highest ranked local golfer in the world rankings as at Oct 20.
   Guan Tianlang, China’s golf prodigy, is considered one of the best amateurs in the world and will play at the CIMB Classic under a sponsor’s invite.
  Guan made global headlines when he became the youngest ever player to play and make the cut at last year’s Masters Tournament, earning rave reviews along the way.
     The other exciting confirmations are from Major champions, the reigning FedExCup champion, Ryder Cup team members, CIMB Classic past champions and fast rising Asian stars.
   Leading the early commitments is World No 3 Sergio Garcia of Spain, and he is joined by 2014 FedExCup champion Billy Horschel (US), as well as Asia's leading golfers Hideki Matsuyama and Ryo Ishikawa from Japan.
  Defending champion Ryan Moore (US) will return to KLGCC to defend his CIMB Classic title, and also returning to the country is Malaysian Open Champion Lee Westwood (Eng).
   Americans Jimmy Walker and Patrick Reed, who will join Garcia and Westwood at the 2014 Ryder Cup in Gleneagles, Scotland -- will also be in the exciting field.
   The Classic, now into its fifth year, will feature a 78-player elite field, comprising 60 from the PGA Tour, 10 from the Asian Tour and eight sponsor’s exemptions.
   “In just 5 years, the CIMB Classic has taken its place among the largest tournaments in the world and the stage is once again set for some world-class golf,” said Effendy Shahul Hamid, Group Chief Marketing & Communications Officer of CIMB Group.
    “If these early commitments are anything to go by, come October, Malaysia will once again showcase a stellar collection of the best players from across the globe."
   Garcia had three runner-up finishes on the 2013-14 PGA Tour season including the Open Championship and the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational. Garcia finished tied 11th at the 2013 CIMB Classic and finished the season ranked No 13 on the FedExCup standings.
   Also returning to the Classic is Horschel, the newly minted FedExCup champion. Despite missing the cut at The Barclays, Horschel rallied and delivered one of the best closing stretches in PGA TOUR history, finishing tied-second at the Deutsche Bank Championship and winning both the BMW Championship and TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola, becoming the youngest FedExCup champion in history.
  Horschel’s win at East Lake moved him into the top-15 of the Official World Golf Rankings.
   Hideki Matsuyama and Ryo Ishikawa are two of the PGA Tour’s young and rising international stars and two of Japan's most recognised sportsmen.