Four-time Major winner Phil Mickelson will make his first appearance in Malaysia when he tees-off in the US$7 million CIMB Classic, which will be played this October 24-27 at Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club (KLGCC).
Joining Mickelson in the 78-player field are past winners Ben Crane, Bo Van Pelt and defending champion Nick Watney as the event moves to KLGCC’s West Course for the first time. The past three editions were played at The Mines Resort & Golf Club.
This year’s CIMB Classic will be part of the PGA Tour’s revamped 2013-2014 season and will offer FedExCup points for the first time, making it the first official FedExCup event to be held in Asia.. The 78-player field consists of 60 players from the PGA Tour, 10 from the Asian Tour and eight sponsor’s exemptions including two Malaysians.
Prizemoney has also been increased from US$6.1 million to US$7 million, reinforcing the tournament’s status as the richest golf event in South East Asia. The winner will pocket a cheque for US$1.3 million and will also earn a priceless two-year exemption on the PGA Tour.
“The CIMB Classic is now a marquee event on the PGA Tour calendar. The event has grown from strength to strength over the last four years. This year it makes its debut as a full-fledged PGA Tour FedExCup event with an increased field and a new venue. KLGCC is a venue that will give us the scale we need to take it to the next level,” said Dato’ Sri Nazir Razak, Group Chief Executive, CIMB Group.
“The Mines is a world-class facility and have been great partners over last three years. We extend our greatest thanks and appreciation to their management and staff for all the effort in getting us to where we are today,” said Nazir.
“We are delighted to have our past champions Ben, Bo and Nick back; and we look forward to seeing Phil tee off in Malaysia for the first time. I am confident that this year’s CIMB Classic will be yet another amazing display of talent,” he added.
Mickelson has a career total of 41 PGA Tour wins including four Majors at the Masters in 2004, 2006 and 2010 and the PGA Championship in 2005. He currently ranks fifth in the FedExCup standings with four top-10s including one victory on the PGA Tour this year.
“I’ve heard great things about Kuala Lumpur and the CIMB Classic from the guys who played there. This will be my first visit to Malaysia, I’m really excited and looking forward to the experience,” Mickelson said.
“The CIMB Classic presents an excellent opportunity for PGA Tour players to compete in Asia, and it’s part and parcel of promoting the game globally. I think it’s fantastic that the CIMB Classic is part of the FedExCup; it certainly drives the tournament’s competitiveness and encourages the presence of American golfers in the region.”
For more information, log on to www.cimbclassic.com.