Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia: Following a four-year hiatus, the Malaysian Open will make a welcome return to the Asian Tour next year.
The venue for the US$1 million event from March 5-8 will be the award-winning Kota Permai Golf and Country Club, a Golf Course Facility Member of the Asian Golf Industry Federation.
The flagship event of the Malaysian Golf Association (MGA), the 2020 edition of the Malaysian Open will be co-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and the Japan Golf Tour Organisation (JGTO). The new tagline for the tournament is: ‘Pride, Passion, Prominence’.
Tan Sri Mohd Anwar Mohd Nor, President of the MGA, said: “The Malaysian Open is among the most prestigious and long-standing professional golf event in the region. It has provided a platform for Malaysian professional golfers and amateurs ample opportunities to compete against some of the best players from around the world, such as Rory McIlroy, Martin Kaymer, Louis Oosthuizen, Thongchai Jaidee, Lee Westwood, Ernie Els and Charles Schwartzel.
“For the 2020 edition, 40 slots will be offered to our local players, comprising 30 slots reserved for eligible Malaysian professionals and 10 slots for Malaysian amateurs made up of national players and top Malaysian juniors. We hope that our Malaysian players will take this opportunity to train hard to compete with their peers from the Asian and Japan Tours and vie for the top honours in this championship.”
Inaugurated in 1962, the Malaysian Open featured prominently on the Asian Tour schedule from 1999 to 2015. It also became the first event to be co-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and the European Tour in 1999, when American Gerry Norquist triumphed.
“The Malaysian Open is one of the oldest national Opens in the region and we are excited and honoured to welcome the storied event back into our fold,” said Cho Minn Thant, Commissioner and Chief Executive Officer of the Asian Tour, a Full Business Member of the Asian Golf Industry Federation.
“I would like to express our gratitude to the Malaysian Golf Association for their outstanding support of the game at the highest level in Asia. The tournament’s return to our schedule is a massive boost for the Tour as we continue to strive to promote professional golf across Asia.
“Malaysia has always been a key market for the Asian Tour. The return of the country’s national Open will not only inspire a new generation of Malaysian golfers but also create further opportunities for our members to showcase their talents.”
Among the Malaysian Open’s notable champions are former world number ones Vijay Singh (1992 and 2001) and Lee Westwood (1997 and 2014), who have both won the tournament twice.
Also on the roll of honour are Thais Thongchai Jaidee and Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Korean Noh Seung-yul and Indians Arjun Atwal and Anirban Lahiri, all of whom went on to win the Asian Tour Order of Merit in the same year they triumphed in the Malaysian Open.