More than 50 Tour winners and six Order of Merit champions will form part of an elite 144-man field who will tee up at Black Mountain Golf Club for the highly anticipated International Series Thailand from March 3 to 6.
Reigning Asian Tour No. 1 Joohyung Kim of Korea, four-time Asian Tour champion John Catlin of the United States, as well as Thai aces Jazz Janewattananond, Sadom Kaewkanjana and Phachara Khongwatmai are among the notable names slated to play.
Tour veterans Thaworn Wiratchant and Prayad Marksaeng of Thailand, Australia’s Scott Hend, India’s Jyoti Randhawa and Jeev Milkha Singh and Singapore’s Mardan Mamat, boasting a collective total of 57 titles on Tour, will also add to the collection of star-power in the US$1.5 million (RM6.3m) event.
Hend, hailed as the most successful international player on Tour with 10 victories, including three that were secured in Thailand, is the last player on Tour to triumph at the award-winning Black Mountain Golf Club when he won the Thailand Classic in 2016.
England’s Steve Lewton, who leads the 2022/23 Order of Merit following a solid tied-fourth place finish at the season-opening Saudi International last week, will also compete as well as American Berry Henson, a proud brand ambassador and resident of Black Mountain Golf Club.
Thai amateur Ratchanon Chantananuwat, who has been hogging the limelight since the Asian Tour’s resumption in Phuket last November, will make another appearance having received a sponsors’ invitation.
The 14-year-old prodigy has not missed a single cut in his last five starts on the Asian Tour. The teen sensation even came close to winning in Singapore last month before settling for third at The Singapore International.
Asian Tour Commissioner and CEO Cho Minn Thant lauded the impressive line-up, saying: “This is the first of our International Series and it is no surprise to see the cream of the Tour have entered. This will be a ground-breaking event.
“It’s been six years since we last played at Black Mountain Golf Club. They have been a great host in the past and I am sure they will play a great host once again. We are looking forward to a great week there.”
Other leading players in the impressive field include Chan Shih-chang of Chinese Taipei, India’s Shiv Kapur, Japan’s Ryosuke Kinoshita and Hideto Tanihara, Wade Ormsby of Australia and Bio Kim of Korea.
The tournament is the first of 10 International Series events that will take place this year along with the Asian Tour’s traditional strong back bone of established events.