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Field announced for inaugural Asian Amateur

The field for the inaugural Asian Amateur Championship, which will be held Oct. 29-Nov. 1 at Mission Hills Golf Club in Shenzhen, China, was released today. The big news next week will be the winner’s invitation to the 2010 Masters.

When the event’s creation was announced eight months ago, critics said the field wouldn't be strong enough to merit a Masters invitation, especially when events like the European Amateur and NCAA Championship don’t receive one.

The Asian Amateur field is weak when considering the big prize awaiting the winner, but the event, which is run by the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation with support from Augusta National and the R&A, wasn't necessarily created to strengthen the Masters field. It was created to "grow the game" in Asia and capitalize on golf's growth in the region.

The highest-ranked player in the Asian Amateur field, according to the Golfweek/amateurgolf.com Player Rankings, is No. 8 Daniel Nisbet of Australia. There are just 8 players in the field ranked in the top 200 (see below). Many of the top players in the field aren’t Asian, either, but from Australia and New Zealand. The top five players in the field are Australian, and seven of the 8 top-200 players are either Australian or from New Zealand.

The R&A’s World Amateur Golf Rankings were used to determine the field. The top two players from each Asia Pacific Golf Confederation member country, plus the top four from the host country, were invited. The field was filled with the highest-ranked players from APGC member countries. No country, with the exception of the host country, could have more than six players in the field.

• • •

ASIAN AMATEUR PARTICIPANTS IN THE TOP 200 IN THE GOLFWEEK/AMATEURGOLF.COM RANKINGS:

• 8. Daniel Nisbet (Australia)
• 9. Brendan Smith (Australia)
• 18. Matt Jager (Australia)
• 19. Bryden Macpherson (Australia)
• 27. Jordan Sherratt (Australia)
• 74. Ryan Fox (New Zealand)
• 79. Peter Spearman-Burn (New Zealand)
• 167. Mu Hu (China)

A handful of players who compete at U.S. colleges will also be in the field:
• Matthew Giles (Australia/USC)
• Ren Han (China/Indiana)
• Mu Hu (China/Florida)
• Roderick Staunton (Hong Kong/former USC player)
• Eric Chun (Korea/Northwestern)
• Judson Eustaquio (Philippines/Florida Southern)
ABOUT THE Asia-Pacific Amateur

The Asian-Pacific Amateur (formerly known as the Asian Amateur) is the first of a series of worldwide championships put together by a between the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation (APGC), the Masters Tournament and The R&A. The event offers the winner an invitation to the Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club. The champion and runner(s)-up earn spots in The Open Qualifying Series for The Open. The event has historically moved throughout the region and has now been held in China (2009, 2013), Japan (2010), Singapore (2011), Thailand (2012), Australia (2014) and Hong Kong (2015).

A field, topping out at 120 players, is selected by the following criteria.

The top two ranked amateur players from each of the APGC member countries plus the four top ranked players from the host country. If there is not a sufficient number of players ranked from that member country, the member country may nominate a player(s) from their country, to be approved by the APGC, to fulfill the two positions eligible from that country.

The remainder of the field will be filled taking the next highest ranked players of APGC member countries, not otherwise qualified. The maximum number of eligible players from any APGC member country (with the exception of the host country) is six. Additional players may be offered at the event's discretion.

FUTURE SITES:
The ninth edition of the event will be held in New Zealand where it will be staged by Royal Wellington Golf Club from 26 – 29 October, 2017. It will be the first time the championship is held in New Zealand.

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