Singapore, 28 November 2016: South African star Ernie Els, winner of four Major championships, will join the star-studded field at next year’s SMBC Singapore Open.
The US$1 million tournament is once again set to tee-off on the Serapong Course at Sentosa Golf Club from January 19 to 22, and will be jointly-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and Japan Golf Tour Organisation.
Australian Adam Scott, who has won the event a record three times, and Spaniard Sergio Garcia are also playing in what will be the 51stedition of the tournament.
Els, or the ‘Big Easy’ as he is popularly known, is a big fan of Singapore’s national Open plus Sentosa Golf Club and would dearly love to finally win the title.
He has finished second in the event twice before and played in the prestigious tournament on five occasions.
“The last time I played in Singapore was in 2011 so I am really looking forward to getting back there and having another shot at the title,” said the 47 year old.
“It was good to see the tournament get back on the schedule earlier this year. There is a strong fan base of golf support there, it is a beautiful city and of course the Serapong Course is one of the best there is in Asia.”
He first played in the Singapore Open in 2006 when Scott successfully retained the title after beating him by two shots in a three-hole play-off on Sunday.
The South African was also joint runner up in 2008, when Indian Jeev Milkha Singh triumphed.
In 2011 he tied for 23rd place, he was equal 14th in 2009 and the only time he failed to make the cut was in 2007.
Els has lifted 70 titles around the world and tasted victory 19 times on the PGA Tour.
His first win in a Major came in the US Open in 1994 and he won that event again in 1997. In 2002 he triumphed in the Open Championship for the first time and in 2012 once again lifted The Auld Claret Jug.
Els is also the Asian Tour International Ambassador and an Honorary Member.
Korean Song Younghan, who was victorious in this year’s SMBC Singapore Open, will also return to defend his title.
And it was recently announced the SMBC Singapore Open has been given a major boost with news that the tournament will be part of The Open Qualifying Series for 2017. The leading two non-exempt players, who finish in the top 10 and ties will secure their place in the field at The 146th Open at Royal Birkdale from 16 to 23 July, 2017.