Royal Trophy Chief Tournament Director Reiterates the Competition’s Contribution to Asian Golf

Royal Trophy Chief Tournament Director Andy Yamanaka reiterated the tournament’s significant contribution to the development of professional golf in Asia. His statements were consistent with the views expressed by two-time Masters champion José Maria Olazábal, Asia’s first-ever Major winner Y.E. Yang and Players’ Committee members Isao Aoki, Naomichi ‘Joe’ Ozaki, Jeev Milkha Singh, Sir Nick Faldo, Ian Woosnam OBE and Paul McGinley.

Andy Yamanaka, who has been deeply involved with the Royal Trophy since the inaugural edition held in Thailand in 2006, said: “I think this competition has been very meaningful for golf in all of Asia, by giving our players the opportunity to compete against Europe, and to know what it feels like to play for your teammates, your captain, your country, and your continent.”

Stressing the broad role the championship plays in the career of players, he added: “Playing for more than just yourself has brought something special to our players, and helped them to improve as golfers and as people.”

“On behalf of the Japan Golf Tour I can say we are most happy to be involved in this great event, and we believe it will continue to grow, and go from strength to strength,” added the Japanese golf official who is also Executive Director of the traditional Japan Golf Tour.

The Royal Trophy is officially sanctioned by the Japan Golf Tour, a member of the Federation of PGAs, and the China Golf Association, the People’s Republic’s governing body for the sport. The event is also supported by the regional OneAsia Tour.

The traditional series of matches played between the continents of Europe and Asia originated from a historic meeting held in 2001 and attended by the late legendary five-time Major winner Seve Ballesteros, his nephew and former manager Ivan Ballesteros and entrepreneur Lincoln Venancio. In 2005, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej of Thailand graciously donated the perpetual sixteen-kilogram solid-silver Trophy, stewardship of which is the principal award for the competition. The legendary Ballesteros captained the European Team to victories in the two inaugural editions of the matches.

“This is Seve’s legacy to us, and we owe so much to him. We need to continue to show the same will and desire he displayed, and to celebrate his extraordinary vision and foresight. That way this competition will continue to grow,” concluded Andy Yamanaka.

Olazábal led the European Team to a dramatic 8 1/2 – 7 1/2 victory last month in China, delivering a remarkable final day recovery which left Asia’s best golfers in shock.

The eighth edition of the Royal Trophy will be held on 19-21 December 2014 at the 54-hole Dragon Lake Golf Club in Guangzhou, China.

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