Japan Return for Asia-Pacific Amateur

Taiheiyo Club President Shun Han (centre), with The R&A’s Niall Farquharson (far left) and Martin Slumbers (far right), Augusta National’s Pat Battle (second left) and Fred Ridley (second right) and APGC Chairman Taimur Hassan Amin (third right) and Vice Chairman Philip Hassall (third left). Picture by AAC.

Melbourne, Australia: The Asia-Pacific Golf Confederation (APGC), the Masters Tournament and The R&A have announced that the 15th Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship (AAC) will be contested at Taiheiyo Club’s Gotemba Course in Japan.

To be held from October 3-6, 2024, it will be the second time that Japan has staged the AAC. Hideki Matsuyama won the second edition of the Championship in 2010 when it was staged at Kasumigaseki Country Club.

The AAC field is comprised annually of the top male amateurs in the Asia-Pacific region representing the 43 APGC affiliated organisations.

The champion of the 2024 Asia-Pacific Amateur will receive an invitation to compete in the 2025 Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club and automatically qualifies for The 153rd Open. The runner(s)-up will gain a place in Final Qualifying for The Open.

“Returning to Japan for the 15th edition of the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship brings the Championship full circle,” said Taimur Hassan Amin, Chairman of the Asia-Pacific Golf Confederation, on behalf of the Founding Partners.

“The Asia-Pacific Amateur has an extensive history in Japan, starting with Hideki Matsuyama’s victory more than a decade ago, and we are committed to building on that legacy in 2024 at a world-class venue in Taiheiyo Club’s Gotemba Course,” he added.

Notable past competitors include Matsuyama, a two-time winner of the AAC and the 2021 Masters champion, and 2022 Open champion Cameron Smith.

Collectively, alumni of the AAC have gone on to win 24 tournaments on the PGA Tour to date and more than 120 across the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, Asian Tour and Japan Golf Tour.

“We are excited to welcome the best players from across the Asia-Pacific region to Taiheiyo Club’s Gotemba Course in 2024,” said Shun Han, President of Taiheiyo Club. “The Gotemba Course is one of the world’s top courses and we look forward to the test it will provide to some of the most talented golfers in the world,” he added.

Designed in 1977 by Shunsuke Kato, Taiheiyo Club’s Gotemba Course underwent a renovation in 2018 overseen by Rees Jones with consultation from Matsuyama.

The hillside course, situated 100 kilometres southwest of Tokyo, features views of Mount Fuji. The flagship of Taiheiyo Club’s 18 golf courses, the Gotemba Course has hosted a number of international events, including the Taiheiyo Masters and the 2001 World Cup of Golf won by South Africa’s Ernie Els and Retief Goosen.

“It will be an honour to welcome this elite Championship back to Japan after hosting the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship in 2010,” said Executive Director Andy Yamanaka of the Japan Golf Association.

“We are prepared to showcase Japanese golf at the highest levels and build on the success that past champions such as Hideki Matsuyama, Takumi Kanaya and Keita Nakajima have had at this Championship,” he added.

The AAC has served as a springboard to some of the world’s top players since its inception in 2009, including Australians Cameron DavisLucas HerbertMin Woo Lee and Cameron Smith, Chinese Taipei’s CT Pan, Koreans Kim Si-woo and Lee Kyoung-hoon, Japan’s Kanaya, Satoshi Kodaira, Matsuyama and Nakajima and New Zealand’s Ryan Fox.

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