Daniel Nisbet will return to the Clearwater Bay golf course in Hong Kong this week for one of the more unusual title defences in the game’s history.
Nisbet won the Clearwater Bay Open in a playoff over American Alex Kang, the tournament one of the last played on the 2016 PGA TOUR China schedule before the circuit became defunct.
Three years after being launched, the PGA TOUR China was dismantled and replaced by the China Golf Tour in 2017 and the Clearwater Bay Open wasn’t part of the new schedule.
But a recent announcement that PGA TOUR China would return to the world golfing scene in 2018 meant a reprieve for the Hong Kong event and after not playing a single event in China in 2017, Nisbet will now get to defend his title.
The spectacular course has proved a hit with elite players a successful event last year as well as hosting the 2015 Asia Pacific Amateur Championship.
Nisbet is one of 18 Australasians who will tee up in the tournament and declared in 2016 the venue was among his favourite in world golf.
“This is the most breathtaking course I’ve ever played,” he said. “It’s hard to play bad golf around here.”
Nisbet will be hoping to replicate his 2016 form where rounds of 69-67-65-64 saw him tied in regulation with Kang before a birdie at the first playoff hole sealed the win.
Joining Nisbet in Hong Kong are Max McCardle, Christophr Wood, David Lutterus, James Marchesani, Bradley Smith, Mitch Davis, Peter Martin, Gavin Flint, Nathan Goulding, Grant Gibson, Shawn Morley, Michel Willis and Jake Stirling.
New Zealanders Fraser Wilkin, Shane Kuiti, Campbell Rawson and Josh Munn are also in the field.
Eligibilty for the tournament was based on last year’s PGA TOUR China results including all 2016 PGA TOUR China tournament winners, the top-60 money-winners on the 2016 PGA TOUR China Order of Merit, the top-30 available players from the 2016 China Golf Association Ranking List, 10 open qualifiers and 10 sponsor exemptions, among others.
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