International golf sponsor HSBC has hailed Guan Tianlang’s historic Masters performance as the fulfilment of almost a decade of investment in Chinese golf.
The 14-year-old prodigy became the youngest ever golfer to make the cut at a major at Augusta and HSBC believe his trailblazing achievement will clear the way for a new wave of Chinese golfing talent.
The teenager from Guangzhou is a graduate of HSBC’s Junior Golf Programme and HSBC Global Head of Sponsorship and Events Giles Morgan said: “Guan’s incredible performance has not so much opened the door for other Chinese golfers to follow as kicked it off its hinges – this is what we have been working towards for the best part of a decade.
“The reason we launched the HSBC Junior Golf Programme was to establish a sustainable long-term structure and framework to develop the future of Chinese golf and we’re incredibly proud of Guan’s achievement at Augusta. It feels like a major turning point for Chinese golf.
“Guan has been involved in HSBC Junior Golf tournaments right from their inception in 2007 and is the biggest success story so far but he is by no means alone. Last year we saw two of our other graduates make a mark on the world stage when 14-year-old Andy Zhang became the youngest player ever to qualify for a major at the US Open and 16-year-old amateur Jing Yan became the youngest Chinese female golfer to ever play in a major tournament when she appeared at the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Royal Liverpool.
“In addition to the HSBC China Junior Golf Programme we have the HSBC-sponsored China National Junior Team, the HSBC China Junior Open and the HSBC National Junior Golf Championship, a year-long series of tournaments designed to give China’s elite junior golfers the competitive platform they need to develop their game.
“There’s a very healthy pipeline of golfing talent coming through in China and Guan’s performance will give them the belief that they can compete with the world’s best on the international stage.”
HSBC Golf Sponsorship www.hsbcgolf.com