Dongguan, China: Xiong Tianyu enhanced his reputation as one of China’s brightest golfing prospects with a tense play-off victory in the 15th Faldo Series Greater Bay Area Championship.
Winner of last year’s HSBC China Junior Open Championship and fifth in the China Golf Association’s amateur men’s ranking, 16-year-old Xiong was in blistering form at Mission Hills Golf Club in the third leg of the 2020-21 Faldo Series Asia season.
With rounds of 73, 65 and 68, Xiong posted a three-day aggregate of 10-under-par 206 over the Rose-Poulter Course at Mission Hills’ Dongguan site.
That performance was matched blow-for-blow by Luo Shaojun with the duo unable to be separated after 54 holes. However, it was Xiong who prevailed with a par at the first hole of sudden-death, the 18th. In so doing, he added to his collection of titles, which includes the Mission Hills Junior Series in 2016.
Thanks to his latest triumph, Xiong can now look forward to lining up in the 15th Faldo Series Asia Grand Final. To be hosted by Sir Nick Faldo, the annual showpiece is scheduled to take place at Vietnam’s Laguna Lăng Cô in March, 2021, pending the status of the Covid-19 pandemic and the ability of players and officials to travel freely.
“We’re keeping close tabs on the situation around Asia and will be consulting with our partners at Laguna Lăng Cô in the coming weeks before making a final decision,” said Matthew Faldo, Director of the Faldo Series.
Joining Xiong at the award-winning Faldo Design course will be four other age-group winners from the Greater Bay Area Championship – Sun Yiqi (Boys’ 17-18), Adam Tong (Boys’ 11-13), Chinese Taipei’s Dongguan-based Chang Chih-hsuan (Girls’ 17-21) and Zou Yiyun (Girls’ Under-16).
“Congratulations to all the category winners. I’m delighted to see the scoring and quality of play continues to improve among young Chinese golfers,” said Sir Nick, six-time Major champion and Founder of the Faldo Series.
The Faldo Series is integral to the Mission Hills Junior Golf Programme, which provides access to the sport for tens of thousands of juniors each year, from beginners to elite amateurs, through junior tournaments, coaching, camps and clinics, schools initiatives and free access for juniors to three of its courses.
Founded in 1992, the Mission Hills Group has invested more than US$6 million into its Junior Golf Programme and more than 100,000 competitive rounds have been played at Mission Hills by juniors.
The 2020-21 Faldo Series Asia season is supported by The R&A and endorsed by the Asia-Pacific Golf Confederation and the Asian Tour, a Full Business Member of the Asian Golf Industry Federation.