SHENZHEN, China -- Mission Hills Golf Club – the world's largest collection of premier golf courses with 12 layouts designed by many of the greatest golfers and golf course architects from five continents – announces Finland, Canada and Portugal have qualified for the 2008 Omega Mission Hills World Cup, held November 27-30 on the Olazabal Course.
The Finnish team of Roope Kakko and Mikko Korhonen claimed medalist honors, firing a one under par 71 at Poland's Sierra Golf Club in difficult weather conditions to finish at 267. Canadians Wes Heffernan and Graham Delaet were eight shots back, while the Portuguese team of Tiago Cruz and Ricardo Santos finished third. The six will now travel to China to test their mettle against the best players in the world.
"The results from Poland demonstrate the worldwide reach of golf," says Tenniel Chu, Executive Director, Mission Hills Golf Club. "The game has deep roots in Canada, but is just starting to gain popularity in Finland and Portugal. Mission Hills prides itself on growing golf and the World Cup is a vital component of its initiative to spread the sport to the four corners of the globe."
In an unprecedented agreement with the International Federation of PGA Tours, Mission Hills will host the Omega Mission Hills World Cup through 2018. Finland, Canada and Portugal join host nation China and 21 other teams in the field. They are:
Australia (Richard Green, Brendan Jones), Chile (Felipe Aquilar, Mark Tullo), Denmark (Soren Hansen, Anders Hansen), England (Ian Poulter, Ross Fisher), France (Gregory Havret, Gregory Bourdy), Germany (Martin Kaymer, Alex Cejka), India (Jeev M. Singh, Jyoti Randhawa), Ireland (Graeme McDowell, Paul McGinley), Italy (Francesco Molinari, Edoardo Molinari), Japan (Ryuji Imada, Toru Taniguchi), Korea (Bae Snag-moon, Kim Hyung-tae), Philippines (Angelo Que and Mars Pucay), (New Zealand (Mark Brown, David Small), Scotland (Alastair Forysth, Colin Montgomerie), South Africa (Rory Sabbatini, Richard Sterne), Spain (Miguel Angel Jimenez, Pablo Larrazabal), Sweden (Henrik Stenson, Robert Karlsson), Taiwan (Wen-Tang Lin, Wen-Teh Lu), Thailand (Prayad Marksaeng, Thongchai Jaidee), United States (TBD), Wales (Bradley Dredge, Richard Johnson).
A third and final qualifier will be held in Venezuela (October 7-10) to complete the field.
About the Omega Mission Hills World Cup:
The 2008 Omega Mission Hills World Cup continues a new and exciting era in the history of the event. John Jay Hopkins, a noted Canadian industrialist, founded the event in 1953 as a way to promote goodwill among nations through golf. Initially named the Canada Cup, it became the World Cup in 1967 and is scheduled to be played at Mission Hills Golf Club through 2018. The 2008 Omega Mission Hills World Cup will offer a purse of $5.5 million, an increase of $500,000 from 2007. It is a four-day team event featuring a four-ball (better-ball) format on days one and three, and a foursomes (alternate shot) format on days two and four.
In its first year as host, Mission Hills' Olazabal Course was universally lauded by participants and media alike. Its namesake, the two-time Masters champion, collaborated with Schmidt-Curley Design to create a well-bunkered and dramatically contoured layout. Memorable holes abound, like the par-5 15th, featuring 26 bunkers, and the long par-4 18th finishing in the shadows of the massive Dongguan Clubhouse.
About Mission Hills Golf Club:
Stretching across the lush, rolling hills of Shenzhen and Dongguan in southern China, Mission Hills is China's highest rated golf club, and the largest golf club in the world according to the Guinness World RecordsTM. The property is home to 12 resort and championship courses designed by Jack Nicklaus, Pete Dye, Greg Norman, Nick Faldo, Annika Sorenstam, Ernie Els, Jose Maria Olazabal, Vijay Singh, David Leadbetter, David Duval, Jumbo Ozaki and Zhang Lian Wei.
Mission Hills is a full-service, luxury resort, featuring four clubhouses, three spas, two five-star hotels, three golf academies (including schools from world renowned instructors David Leadbetter and Cindy Reid), 51 tennis courts and numerous fine dining establishments serving cuisine from around the world. It has hosted more than 50 international tournaments, including the 1995 World Cup of Golf and the Tiger Woods China Challenge in 2001. The Olazabal Course will host the Omega Mission Hills World Cup through 2018.
Mission Hills' recent awards and accolades include:
• IAGTO Golf Resort of the Year (Rest of World category)
• Best Golf Resort in China – Asian Golf Monthly (2007)
• Pete Dye Course named the "Best New Course in Asia" – Asian Golf Monthly (2007)
• Olazabal Course ranked the number two course in China – Asian Golf Monthly (2007)
• Dr. David Chu, Chairman of Mission Hills Group, named one of the "Most Powerful People in Golf" – Golf Inc. (2007)
• Dr. Kenneth Chu, Vice Chairman of Mission Hills Group, named one of golf's "Most Admired Operators" – Golf Inc. (2008)
• World Cup Course named one of the 10 "most significant and influential courses" of last 20 years – LINKS Magazine (2008)
• Olazabal Course ranked the number one resort course in Asia – Golfing Magazine (2008)
Getting There: Mission Hills Golf Club is a short drive north of Hong Kong International Airport, www.hongkongairport.com. Flights on most major airlines from most major cities are available into Hong Kong. From the airport, Mission Hills transports golfers in luxury shuttles across the border to the resort hotel.
For more information about Mission Hills Golf Club, visit www.missionhillsgroup.com, email email@example.com, or call (852) 2122 1616 (Hong Kong) -- (86 755) 2802 0888 (Shenzhen) -- (86 769) 8728 8888 (Dongguan).