Yangon: The Leopalace21 Myanmar Open will make a welcome return in February, 2016 with a record prize purse of $750,000 and a co-sanction seal from the Asian Tour and Japan Golf Tour, it was announced on Friday.
The Royal Mingalardon Golf and Country Club has been selected to host next year’s edition from February 4 to 7.
Inaugurated in 1996, the Myanmar Open has been staged on 13 occasions on the Asian Tour with the last being played in 2013 when it was won by Thailand’s Chawalit Plaphol.
Former champions include Asian Tour stars such as Boonchu Ruangkit and Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand, Chinese Taipei’s Lin Keng-chi and Japanese ace Tetsuji Hiratsuka while international players who have won in Myanmar include South Africa’s James Kingston, American Anthony Kang and Australian Kieran Pratt.
Leopalace21 president and CEO Eisei Miyama believes its association as title sponsor of the Myanmar Open will enable it to fulfil its commercial objectives in the region while also supporting the game at the highest level in Asia.
Asian Tour chairman Kyi Hla Han said: "On behalf of our players, we are delighted to welcome back the Leopalace21 Myanmar Open. The event has long been a mainstay on the Asian Tour and we fully value the vision and support of our title sponsor, Leopalace21."
“I am sure we will welcome a worthy champion to join illustrious names such as Thongchai Jaidee, Boonchu Ruangkit and Tetsuji Hiratsuka as winners of the Leopalace21 Myanmar Open.”
Myanmar Golf Federation (MGF) president U. Ko Ko Aye said the return of its national championship will spur local golf development and inspire young golfers to excel in the professional game.