With the continued commitment of title sponsor – The Venetian Macao, the tournament’s prize purse sees a third consecutive increase, taking it to the all-important US$1 million mark – a rise of US$100,000 on 2014, making it one of the most lucrative tournaments on the Asian Tour.
And with confirmation that defending champion and current Asian Tour Order of Merit leader Anirban Lahiri will be returning to Macao to defend the title he won in such dramatic style last year, the tournament once again promises to deliver a first class spectacle when the action gets underway in October.
Last year’s win propelled Lahiri towards a second place finish on the Asian Tour Order of Merit and being voted 2014 Players’ Player of the Year for his exploits. Speaking about his return to the Macau Golf & Country Club, the 28-year-old from Bangalore said, “2014 was a superb tournament and went right down to the wire in the fourth round. I managed to put myself in contention on the back nine, putting a bit of pressure on Scott Hend which paid off. The Venetian Macao Open is certainly one of the best tournaments we play all year. It’s very intimate and it’s just great fun to be right in the heart of Macao.”
“The season’s going well so far with a win in Malaysia and back home in India and a competitive result at The Open at St Andrews last week so I’ll be looking to take that momentum back to Asia and see if I can make it a double,” continued Lahiri.
Speaking ahead of the official announcement of the 2015 edition of the tournament, José Tavares, President of Macao Sport Development Board of Macao SAR Government (MSDB) said, “Once again we’re delighted to see the return of the Venetian Macao Open. Already one of the players’ favourites, the tournament continues to go from strength to strength with a further increase in prize purse and growing popularity among the general public. I would like to take this opportunity to thank our partners: Golf Association of Macao, The Venetian Macao, who I’m sure, together with IMG, will create another top quality sporting spectacle for Macao.”
And it won’t just be what goes on inside the ropes that is expected to catch the eye of event goers. Relaunched under the banner of ‘Only in Macao,’ organisers are promising an exciting entertainment lineup off the golf course as well, as Dave Horton, Global Chief Marketing Officer of Las Vegas Sands Corp. and Sands China Ltd. explained:
“Over the years, the Venetian Macao Open has established itself as one of the premier tournaments in the region, enabling spectators to get closer to the stars of the game than at other tournaments. As the leader in Macao when it comes to delivering world-class sporting and entertainment events, we are always trying to bring bigger and better events to the region. One of our goals for this year is to combine the intimacy of the tournament with the allure of Macao to create top quality entertainment both on and off the fairways.”
Kyi Hla Han, Chairman of the Asian Tour said, “The Venetian Macao Open provides a great spectacle each year and is undoubtedly one of the players’ favourite tournaments. The welcome we receive from The Venetian Macao is always first-rated and I have no doubt that with a third consecutive increase to the prize purse, fans can expect to watch Asia’s finest players in action. On behalf of the Asian Tour, I would like to extend a sincere thank you to the Organizers: Macao Sport Development Board, Golf Association of Macao and The Venetian Macao for their continued commitment to the tournament, Macau Golf & Country Club for the use of their unique club and golf course and to tournament promoters IMG for staging such a first class event. We look forward to seeing you in October!”
Since its inauguration in 1998, the tournament has been contested by some of the best golfers the world has ever seen, including Lee Westwood (winner in 1999), Colin Montgomerie (winner in 2003), Scott Hend (winner in 2013), Nick Faldo, Padraig Harrington, Fred Couples, Ian Woosnam, Mark O’Meara and Zhang Lian-wei.
The Venetian Macao Open is jointly organised by Macao Sport Development Board of Macao SAR Government (MSDB) and Golf Association of Macao. It is sanctioned by both the Asian Tour and the Golf Association of Macao, and promoted by IMG. The Venetian Macao is the title sponsor of the event for a fourth successive year, boasting an increased prize fund of US$ 1 million.
In addition to the Macao Sport Development Board (MSDB) and The Venetian Macao who support this annual sports event, also including other sponsors like Rolex, Peroni, Bonaqua/Coca-Cola, NIKE GOLF, Macau Golf & Country Club, Srixon, Casillero del Diablo.