The 2012 Venetian Macau Open teed off at the Macau Golf & Country Club in Coloane with ex-chief executive Edmund Ho Hau Wah, who is now a vice-chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), officiating at the tee-off ceremony and some practice rounds Wednesday while the matches will run from today until Sunday.
The inaugural Macau Open in 1998 was won by Japan’s Satoshi Oide. However, the event wascancelled in 2010 due to an acute lack of sponsorships. It returned last year with the total prize money increased from US$300,000 to US$750,000 (six million patacas) which was won by Taiwanese golfer Chan Yih-shin, who is back to defend his title.
Mainland China’s Zhang Lian-wei, the only Macau Open champion who has won twice in a row, in 2001 and 2002, is also participating in the 2012 Venetian Macau Open.
The men’s professional golf tournament is part of the Asian Tour, making it one of the region’smost important golfing events.
Among the other well-known professional golfers who have won the tournament are Scotland’s eight-time European Tour Order of Merit champion Colin Montgomerie, winning in 2003 and Thai golfer Thaworn Wiratchant, who won in 2009. Former Masters champion Ian Woosnam, winner of 48 international titles, will also be competing in the event, The Macau Post Daily points out today.
Golfing greats who have also played the course at Macau Golf & Country Club are Fred Couples, Nick Faldo, Padraig Harrington, Mark O’Meara, Nick Price and Vijay Singh,
This year’s Macau Open is broadcast live on the Asian Tour Global Television Platform to more than 600 million viewers in more than 180 countries and regions, Asian Tour CEO Mike Kerr, pointed out in an August press conference at the Venetian in Cotai.
Organised by the government’s Sport Development Board (IDM), the 2012 Venetian Macau Open is sanctioned by the Asian Tour and the Macau Golf Association, and promoted by IMG Golf.(macaunews)