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Fiji International joins European Tour

Matt Kuchar the 2015 champion (Photo: PGA of Australia)
The Fiji International is set to become even more global in 2016 thanks to a new co-sanctioning relationship between the PGA Tour of Australasia and The European Tour.

Professional golfers from all over the world will descend on Fiji when the tournament is played at Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course from October 6–9.The new co-sanctioning relationship between the PGA Tour of Australasia and The European Tour is set to attract a stronger field, with more nationalities represented than ever before.

The Fiji International will also be broadcast live into more homes thanks to European Tour Productions’ global reach. Close to 400 million homes around the world, including the important Asian, North American and Australian markets, will witness the beauty of Fiji as the Fiji International is broadcast live for 20 hours this year.

The European Tour is one of the strongest professional golf tours in the world, and 2016 will see their global presence boosted with their first visit to Fiji.

Keith Pelley, Chief Executive of The European Tour, said: “It is tremendous news that the Fiji International will be played on The European Tour for the first time this year. The tournament will not only increase the playing opportunities for our Members, it will also increase our presence on the world stage.

“The European Tour’s first visit to one of the world’s most beautiful holiday destinations is set to excite our players and Fiji’s golf fans alike, and I’m sure the tournament will be a huge success. Our thanks go to the Fijian Government and the PGA Tour of Australasia, with whom we are forging an ever-stronger relationship through our co-sanctioned tournaments.”

A minimum of 59 players will come from both the PGA Tour of Australasia and The European Tour, whilst an additional eight tournament invitations will add to the diversity of the field.This year’s tournament will also see the highest number of positions set aside for Fijian golfers, with a minimum of six places available from qualifying events in Fiji and for Fijian nationals.

This ensures Fiji’s leading golfers continue to have the opportunity to compete and enhance their skills in a world-class tournament alongside the best players in the world.

With the PGA of Australia’s continuing relationship with the China Golf Association and the Korean Golf Association, players from both these tours will also be invited to play in the event.

With the involvement of The European Tour, the Fiji International cements its position as one of the strongest tournaments on the PGA Tour of Australasia. The allocation of Official World Golf Ranking points to the tournament is likely to increase as a result of this co-sanctioning.

The inaugural Fiji International in 2014 signalled Fiji’s official arrival onto the global golfing stage, with the Fijian Government, Fiji Tourism and Fiji’s number one player, Vijay Singh, all making a push to put their country on the lucrative world golfing map.

More than just a golf tournament, the Fiji International aims to leave a lasting legacy for golf in the Pacific region, with the PGA of Australia supporting initiatives to introduce and grow the game in Fiji. 

 

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