Royal Trophy Dates for 2014 Announced


Following official meetings of the Royal Trophy at the Dragon Lake Golf Club in Guangzhou, China, the dates for the eighth edition of the Championship were announced for 19-21 December 2014. While it is confirmed that the Tournament will be held at Dragon Lake Golf Club, the selection of the 18 holes to be played from the 54-hole facility is yet to be made.

The seventh edition of the Royal Trophy will be played at the Club’s Asian Games Course while the Official Opening Ceremony will be held on 19 December at the stunning King Course set amidst the Dragon Lake and the dramatic mountain range.

“We are very much looking forward to the seventh edition of the Royal Trophy to be played later this week on 20-22 here at Dragon Lake Golf Club. And we are glad to announce the dates for next year’s edition of the Matches,” stated Ivan Ballesteros, Managing Director of the Royal Trophy.

“The Royal Trophy is here for the very long-term, is an Event that continues to contribute to the further development of Asian golf as it was planned from 2001. This is an Event with a great and solid history and with a bright promise for decades into the future,” concluded Ivan Ballesteros.

As the members of the Asian and European Teams start to arrive at the two-hotel luxury resort, it was also confirmed that Hideki Matsuyama has been forced to withdraw from Competition as a result of a left thumb injury which has also kept him from playing the final two events of the Japan Tour, namely the Nippon Series and the Three Tours Championship.

“I am extremely disappointed that I will not be able to play under Captain Y.E. Yang and together with all my Asian teammates. This has been a very difficult decision for me to make as I really wanted to play at the Royal Trophy. This is a very important and prestigious Event and I have been preparing and looking forward to it for months,” said the winner of the 2013 Japan Tour.

“I tried to practice at the driving range to make a final attempt to see if there was any way  I could still play but unfortunately it is really impossible for me to be ready,” added Matsuyama.

“I have informed the Royal Trophy management committee that I would like very much to play at the Royal Trophy next year, if I am selected by the Asian Team Captain. I am fully committed to be there for the eighth edition of the Royal Trophy. I know that next year the Royal Trophy will be held at Dragon Lake Golf Club once again and I look forward to it.

“I will be following this year’s series of matches from Japan and will be supporting my Asian teammates. I really want them to retain the Trophy in Asia and have the opportunity to travel to Guangzhou next year to defend it once again,” conclude the young Japanese golf star.

The Royal Trophy started at a historic meeting held in 2001 between the late legendary three-time Open Championship winner Seve Ballesteros, Ivan Ballesteros and Asian sports entrepreneur Lincoln Venancio. The two-time Masters champion Seve Ballesteros envisioned that the Competition would gift the Asian continent with the same growth impetus the Europeans enjoyed as a result of the Ryder Cup in the 1980s and 1990s.

In 2005 the physical perpetual Royal Trophy was graciously donated by His Majesty the King of Thailand, the world’s longest reigning Monarch. The charismatic Ballesteros captained the European Team to victory in the inaugural two editions of the Championship and intended to continue his captaincy for a total of five editions. However, the Spaniard was found to suffer from a brain tumor in October 2008 and was dramatically replaced as Captain by his close friend Jose Maria Olazabal just prior to the third hosting of the Tournament.

As his illness progressed the extremely popular Ballesteros personally assembled a Players’ Committee which would protect and steward the Royal Trophy to achieved his prediction of “… growing into one of the world’s greatest sporting competitions.” The Committee is comprised of six-time Major winner Sir Nick Faldo, former Masters champion Ian Woosnam O.B.E., current Ryder Cup Captain Paul McGinley, current Royal Trophy Captain Jose Maria Olazabal, all-time Japanese star Isao Aoki, 5-time Royal Trophy Asian Team Captain Naomichi ‘Joe’ Ozaki and India’s greatest golfer Jeev Milkha Singh.

The seventh edition of the Royal Trophy promises to be a fiercely contested series of matches as the Y.E. Yang-led Asian Team defends the Trophy and the Olazabal-captained Europeans attempts to take the perpetual Trophy home.

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