Asia-Pacific’s elite amateur golfers will have to wait until 2023 to defend their titles in the Bonallack Trophy and Patsy Hankins Trophy.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the biennial Ryder Cup-style match play contests between teams representing Europe and Asia-Pacific, due to be staged in July, have been postponed for a second time.
Officials from the Asia-Pacific Golf Confederation (APGC) and the European Golf Association (EGA) confirmed that the 11th edition of the Bonallack Trophy for men and the third staging of the Patsy Hankins Trophy for women will now be held in 2023.
Originally scheduled to be hosted by the Royal Spanish Golf Federation (RFEG) and played at the La Manga Club, Murcia, in Spain, from April 23-25, 2020, the events were called off in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.
“We had hoped that we’d be able to proceed with the Bonallack Trophy and Patsy Hankins Trophy this year. But given the on-going restrictions around travel and quarantines, that will sadly now not be possible,” said APGC chairman Taimur Hassan Amin.
EGA president Haukur Örn Birgisson noted that it was a difficult decision. “But with the health, safety and well-being of players, officials and organisers of paramount importance, we were left with little choice. We’re now focusing on staging the tournaments at La Manga Club in late July, 2023.”
Launched in 1998, the Bonallack Trophy is named after Sir Michael Bonallack, a five-time British Amateur Champion and former secretary of The R&A. Europe has triumphed in seven of the first 10 stagings of the event, although it was the Asia-Pacific team, under the captaincy of Australian Matt Cutler, that emerged victorious when the contest was last staged, at Qatar’s Doha Golf Club in 2018.
No fewer than seven Major champions participated in the Bonallack Trophy during their amateur days – Europeans Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose, Shane Lowry, Danny Willett and Francesco Molinari and Asia-Pacific representatives Geoff Ogilvy (Australia) and Hideki Matsuyama (Japan).
The Patsy Hankins Trophy was launched in 2016 and is named after the late Patsy Hankins (1945–2015), one of the most respected golf administrators New Zealand has produced. Featuring Major champions Hannah Green (Australia), Patty Tavatanakit (Thailand) and recently crowned US Women’s Open winner Yuka Saso (Philippines), as well as Nasa Hataoka (Japan) and Atthaya Thitikul (Thailand), Asia-Pacific has triumphed on both occasions the tournament has taken place.
The main photo shows the Asia-Pacific team that won the last Patsy Hankins Trophy, which featured 2021 Major winners Patty Tavatanakit and Yuka Saso.
Back row, left to right: Liu Wenbo (CHN); Ryu Hae-ran (KOR)
Middle row, left to right: Du Mohan (CHN); Paphangkorn ‘Patty’ Tavatanakit (THA); Atthaya Thitikul (THA); Carl Hankins; Chiang Ya-chun (TPE); Riri Sadoyama (JPN); Yuka Saso (PHI)
Front row, left to right: Kwon Seo-yun (KOR); Grace Kim (AUS); Libby Steele (NZL, non-playing Vice Captain); Joanne McKee (HKG, non-playing Captain); Yuna Nishimura (JPN); Hou Yu-chiang (TPE).