Choi, An and Bae to spearhead challenge
SOUTH Korean golf star K.J. Choi, rising star Byeong Hun An and Sangmoon Bae, who recently completed mandatory military service, have confirmed they will carry the local charge at the PGA Tour’s inaugural CJ Cup @ Nine Bridges next month.
As the first official PGA Tour event in South Korea, the tournament will offer US $9.25mil in prize money, one of the largest in world golf, when a 78-man elite field gathers on the holiday isle of Jeju from Oct 19 to 22.
World No. 4 Justin Thomas and the ninth-ranked Jason Day, who have combined to win 14 PGA Tour events in the last three seasons, have committed to play in the tournament along with former world No. 1 Adam Scott, Paul Casey, Rafa Cabrera Bello and reigning Players champion Si Woo Kim.
Choi, 47, is hailed as one of the nation’s golfing heroes after he won eight times on the PGA Tour, including the Players Championship in 2011. The veteran star has also won nine times in Japan, Europe and Asia, and is looking forward to featuring in the CJ Cup
@ Nine Bridges.
“It’s a special feeling to participate in the first PGA TOUR regular season event in my home country. CJ is providing a wonderful tournament for all the golf fans in South Korea as well as young players who have the opportunity to play at a worldclass level. Hopefully the Korean players will put on a great show for the fans. I look forward to playing in front of our home fans at Nine Bridges,” said Choi.
The powerful An enjoyed three top-10s on the PGA Tour this season to safely retain his card for the 2017-18 campaign, while Bae, who is a two-time winner on the PGA Tour, will be continuing his comeback to the game after spending the past two years serving in the South Korean military.