1st for Fijian International
‘I am really excited to have qualified for the Fijian International’
New Zealand professional golfer Gareth Paddison is the first player to book his ticket for the Fijian International in August. Winning the Fijian Open last month, Paddison earned a start in the prestigious tournament, becoming the first player confirmed for the 2016 tournament.
“I am really excited to have qualified for the Fijian International,”Paddison said.
“I love visiting Fiji, to have won the Fiji Open is an honour and confirming my place in the Fijian International is just icing on the top of a successful week.” Turning professional in 2001, Paddison has established a thriving golf career all over the world and is one of New Zealand’s most loved golfers. After already winning several major international amateur tournaments, it took Paddison just one year to record his first professional victory. Breaking through at the 2002 Scenic Choice Hotels Golf Classic, Paddison has gone on to win a further four tournaments on his home tour, the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia. During his career Paddison has also competed on the European Tour and won in France on the European Challenge Tour. Coming into the Fijian Open, where he won with a tournament total 23-under the card, Paddison has been in good form. Already this year he has recorded two top-20 finishes. However he hopes to build on this coming into the Fijian International, one of the biggest tournaments he will compete in all year.
“The Fijian International is a major tournament with a lot of prize-money on offer. So I am working hard on my game to make sure it is ready to take on the demands of Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course,” added Paddison. “My last win on the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia was in 2014, so I would love to add another victory to my resume.”
This will be Paddison’s third time competing in the Fijian International and he is hoping his course knowledge will hold him in better stead this year. “The Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course is one of the most beautiful and challenging courses we play on all year,” Paddison said. “Having already played it in tournament condition twice now I think I am starting to better understand the game plan I need to be successful at the Fijian International. “There is a real premium on hitting the fairways and with the course being right on the Coral Coast and exposed to the elements, it’s important to also be a good wind player.” With the tournament now being co-sanctioned by the European Tour, Paddison is looking forward to the new feel this will give the Fijian International.
“I have loved playing in the Fijian International the past two years and can’t wait to get back there this year,” Paddison said. “I was excited when I heard the European Tour would be co-sanctioning the tournament. Having all the European players competing is sure to strengthen the field.”
The Fijian International will be played at Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course on October 6-9. Tickets will be on sale shortly. For further information please visit fijiinternational.
The Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course is one of the most beautiful and challenging courses we play on all year. Having already played it in tournament condition twice now I think I am starting to better understand the game plan I need to be successful at the Fijian International.
New Zealand professional golfer
New Zealand professional golfer Gareth Paddison.