New ground will be broken this week with the staging of the inaugural Faldo Series Korea Championship. The 54-hole event at the Hyundai Sollago Country Club in Incheon will be the 14th leg of the record-breaking 2016-17 Faldo Series Asia season.
Six-time Major champion Sir Nick Faldo, founder of the Faldo Series, welcomed the addition of Korea to the schedule.
“Over the past 20 years, Korea has emerged as one of the world’s most powerful golfing nations,” said Faldo. “Korean women have been a dominant force on the LPGA Tour while we’re seeing a growing number of Korean men making their mark on the PGA Tour.
“We saw the Presidents Cup in Korea last year and the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship there last month. We’ve also just had the announcement that a fully-fledged PGA Tour event will take place in Korea for the first time next year. With all this activity, clearly these are exciting times for golf in Korea and I am delighted that the Faldo Series will now be part of the golfing calendar for the country’s elite junior players.
“This year we’ve once more watched Korea sweep to victory in the World Women’s Amateur Team Championship for the Espirito Santo Trophy, seen Park In-bee claim the gold medal at the Rio Olympics and marvelled at Kim Si-woo’s success in the Wyndham Championship on the PGA Tour.
“There is so much incredible talent among Korean golfers and we hope the Faldo Series Korea Championship will provide another opportunity for the country’s rising stars to showcase their talent.
“I’m sure the quality of the play at the Hyundai Sollago Country Club will be exceptional and I look forward to seeing all of the age group winners in Vietnam next March when we come together for the 11th Faldo Series Asia Grand Final.”
Park Ju-ik, Tournament Director for the Faldo Series Korea Championship, said: “There is tremendous excitement among junior golfers here that Korea has joined the Faldo Series.
“I am sure that the Faldo Series Korea Championship will make a great debut this year and that the players who qualify for the Grand Final will do Korea proud.
“In the longer term, we are hopeful that the Faldo Series Korea Championship will become one of the most important events on our annual junior calendar.”
Much of the attention at the recently-opened Hyundai Sollago Country Club will fall on 15-year-old Yoo Hae-ran, a member of the current Korean women’s national squad. Among her numerous achievements are victory in last year’s Evian Championship Junior Cup while she was the leading amateur in this year’s Korea Women’s Open on the Korea LPGA Tour.
All age group winners will be invited to take part in the 11th Faldo Series Asia Grand Final, to be hosted by Sir Nick at Laguna Lăng Cô in Danang, Central Vietnam, in March, 2017.
Supported by The R&A and endorsed by the Asian Tour and the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation, the 2016-17 Faldo Series Asia campaign stretches over 11 months.
As well as two events in China, India and Thailand, championships will be staged in Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Chinese-Taipei, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore and Vietnam.
Recognised as the only global amateur series for boys and girls, the Faldo Series was established in 1996, expanding to Asia in 2006.
Today, 40 Faldo Series tournaments take place in 30-plus countries worldwide, touching more than 7,000 golfers each year. Past winners include Tseng Ya-ni and Rory McIlroy, both multiple Major winners.
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