Mission Hills to Host Asia-Pacific Open Amateur

Mission Hills Golf Club in Shenzhen, China, will host Asia's top amateur tournament, the Asia-Pacific Open Amateur Championship, January 13-16. The event will be held on the Jack Nicklaus-designed World Cup Course at the resort that features a dozen regulation-length layouts.

Ninety-six players from 18 countries, including China, Australia, Japan, England and France, will vie for the title and an exemption to the 2009 Australian Open. Co-sponsored by Mission Hills and the Asia-Pacific Golf Confederation (APGC), the event is the first in China where players' results count toward the R&A's amateur rankings. These rankings establish priority for entry into other big amateur tournaments, like the British Amateur and U.S. Amateur. Mission Hills will host the event through 2015.

"We're excited to host this important championship," says Tenniel Chu, Mission Hills' executive director. "It's only been three years since Mission Hills and the APGC joined forces to give rise to the Mission Hills Asia-Pacific Open Amateur Championship, and we are extremely proud of how far we have already come with this tournament. The strong field, from an eclectic collection of countries on three continents, exemplifies the ever-increasing popularity of golf and the crucial place Asia and China now hold on the global amateur circuit."

The World Cup Course, the first of Mission Hills' 12 layouts, is no stranger to holding international competitions. These include the 1995 World Cup (won by the U.S. team of Fred Couples and Davis Love III); the 2001 Tiger Woods China Challenge, organized in honor of Woods' first visit to China; and the 2003 and '05 editions of the Dynasty Cup, a Ryder Cup-style competition involving teams from Asia and Japan.

"The stature of the Mission Hills Asia-Pacific Open Amateur Championship continues to grow in lock-step with golf's booming popularity around the world," says Chu. "We anticipate a fantastic tournament and foresee even greater import and exposure for the championship in the coming years."