The seventh edition of the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia tees off at Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club (KLGCC) this October 27-30, two weeks later than its traditional slot.
The US$ 1.8 million event will take place once again on the East Course at KLGCC, featuring a field of 75 players made up of 63 from the LPGA Tour, a minimum of seven Malaysian nationals and a further five sponsor exemptions.
Hailed as ‘Malaysia’s most fun golf event’, the tournament will once again provide spectators with four days of first class action on course and a feast of entertainment off it, as organisers look to raise the bar yet again.
Women with Drive will once again adorn the banners and advertising hoardings in the weeks leading up to the event, as the tournament seeks to reaffirm its role of championing women in Malaysia, while continuing to raise funds and awareness for long-term charitable partner, Cancer Research Malaysia.
Defending champion Jessica Korda of the US will be returning to defend the title she won so convincingly last October. The 23-year old will be lining up alongside the best players in the ladies golf including world no.1 Lydia Ko, Brooke Henderson, Inbee Park, Ariya Jutanugarn, and Malaysia’s very own Kelly Tan.
“The Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia is such a special tournament, and not only because I won it last year! The treatment and respect that we receive from the sponsors, organisers and fans is just amazing so it’s an event that all the girls want to play in. Personally I have such happy memories from last year and will be looking forward to getting back out on course and hopefully picking up where I left off,” said Korda.
Once again, the tournament is set to feature a healthy contingent of Malaysian players, ensuring a minimum of seven places through a combination of the official rankings, sponsorship exemptions, and a local qualifying tournament slated for late September.
Speaking about the importance of the tournament in her own career, Malaysia’s top ranked professional golfer Tan said: “I’m delighted to see the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia return for the seventh year. The tournament has been instrumental in the development of my own professional career and while I do feel immensely privileged to travel the world on the LPGA Tour, there is nothing quite as special as competing in front of your home crowd in a tournament of this calibre. I’m really hoping to come back and see all the fans in October.”
As in previous years, it will be the off course entertainment that really sets the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia apart from Malaysia’s other international golf tournaments.
The Courtyard, overlooking the putting green, will once again be the entertainment hub of the tournament, providing visitors with an eclectic mix of golf, music, food and glamour.
A food extravaganza will be back for four days, with KL’s favourite food trucks and KLGCC’s Chef Arnold offering visitors a range of authentic Malaysian and international cuisine. Prices will once again be capped at RM10 per meal – and a free meal included within the ticket price – promising visitors a mouth-watering alternative to conventional event catering.
Pink Saturday will be back with a vengeance, bringing colour and glamour to KLGCC, as the tournament renews its commitment in the fight against breast cancer in Malaysia. Once again, all proceeds will be donated to charitable partner Cancer Research Malaysia, which will be organising a number of initiatives alongside the event to raise further funds and awareness.
With the tournament falling at the end of October – designated official breast cancer awareness month – organisers will be announcing a new month-long campaign to encourage visitors to join the fun and sport a splash of pink on Saturday 29th October. Since its inaugural year in 2010, the tournament has raised in excess of RM 2.5 million for the charity.
One of the main-stays of the tournament over the years has been its continued investment into local talent development. Funded by Sime Darby Foundation, the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia Development Programme will return for the seventh year, providing a crop of talented young players between the ages of 11 and 27 with a world-class six-week intensive coaching programme. The programme has seen some 55 youngsters pass through its ranks over the years, and is now bearing real fruit with a total of eight female Malaysian players competing on professional golf tours around the world.
Steven Thielke, chairman of the tournament committee and CEO of KLGCC, said:
“It gives me great pleasure to announce the return of this wonderful event to the Malaysian capital this October. There is no question that this event is not just one of Malaysia’s leading golf tournaments, but one of Asia’s preeminent sporting events. The tournament will once again showcase Malaysia to the world, while providing a wonderful spectacle for visitors to come and enjoy. It also continues to lend an excellent platform from which to support the development of women’s golf in Malaysia which continues to show great promise, and through its partnership with Cancer Research Malaysia, champions some very important social causes. We look forward to another very successful event this October.”
For all the latest updates, visit the tournament website at www.simedarbylpgamalaysia.com. Tournament activities can also be followed on www.facebook.com/SimeDarbyLPGAMalaysia, or via Twitter and Instagram using @SimeDarbyLPGA, #SimeDarbyLPGA, #WomenWithDrive.