London, England: Six new tournaments, seven new venues and a minimum of 47 tournaments across 11 months, are some of the highlights of the 2015 European Tour International Schedule.
The global expansion of the European Tour is highlighted in particular by the six new events: three of which are in the Far East – China, India and Thailand; two of which are in Europe – Germany and Scotland; and one in Africa in Mauritius.
Two of the new tournaments – the Thailand Classic and the Hero Indian Open – will take place in consecutive weeks in mid-February; the month of January having been dominated once again by the traditional Desert Swing of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship, the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters and the Omega Dubai Desert Classic.
The new Shenzhen International is the first of two tournaments back-to-back in China in mid-April, while the inaugural AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open in the opening week of May is the first tri-sanctioned tournament between the European Tour, the Asian Tour and the Sunshine Tour.
In total, the 2015 European Tour schedule includes eight stops in Asia – China , Hong Kong, India, Malaysia and Thailand.
Completing the line-up of new events for 2015 are the two in Europe; the Saltire Energy Paul Lawrie Matchplay in Scotland at the end of July and the return of the European Open to the calendar in Germany at the end of September, five weeks before the traditional four-tournament Final Series kicks off once again with the BMW Masters in Shanghai.
Other significant dates moves include the Maybank Malaysian Open, at Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club, moving from April to the first week of February as the event celebrates its 10th anniversary with the same title sponsor, while the Omega European Masters moves from its traditional September slot to the last week of July, following the 144th Open Championship at St Andrews.
Keith Waters, Chief Operating Officer and Director of International Policy for the European Tour, said: “Our full schedule for 2015 offers our membership diversity, interest, excitement and variety at a host of wonderful venues in all four corners of the globe.
“We are delighted to have been able to add so many new tournaments and destinations to the Tour and we are pleased that our scheduling has enabled us to create significant clusters of tournaments in the same regions of the world whether that be in Asia, the Middle East or indeed South Africa.”