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The 2016 European Tour confirmed to return to Shenzhen Genzon Golf Club for the first stop in China

The 2016 European Tour will make their first stop in China at the award-winning Shenzhen Genzon Golf Club for the Shenzhen International golf tournament from April 21-24. Among the star attractions announced today will be Bubba Watson, the two-time former Masters champion and world No.4, who made such an impact in the inaugural event last year.

A high-quality field will be fighting it out for an increased prize fund of $2.8 million and for Chinese golfers, the tournament will have extra special meaning as it will play an important role in determining who will represent their nation at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil – the first time golf returns to the Games since 1904.  

The field for the Shenzhen International – co-sanctioned by the European Tour and the China Golf Association (CGA) will be made up of 100 players from the European Tour, 50 from the CGA and six sponsor invites.  

Mr Fei Hailong, the General Manager of Shenzhen Genzon Golf Club, said: “Shenzhen Genzon Golf Club is preparing well for hosting the Shenzhen International at our high-quality facility. Our theme this year is Shenzhen International, Your Home Course and so we are determined to give everyone – players and fans - a sense of pride and ownership of the tournament.  

“For the players, the fantastic atmosphere and the welcome awaiting them should make them feel as if they are teeing off at their home course in a truly high-class event. From the fans’ perspective, we will be extending a warm welcome to all of Shenzhen, and beyond, in what will be a true family atmosphere – with great golf on the course and pure entertainment and a host of activities off it.”  

Among the many attractions will be a chance for spectators to follow in the footsteps of the players, with an eight-mile ‘fun’ walk of the course. Those new to the sport will gain an understanding of golf etiquette and experience the true spirit of the game, while enjoying watching top professional players at close quarters.  

There will also be interactive games throughout the week and the chance to enjoy the ‘Hug Camera’ activity, where volunteers dressed to catch the eye will pose for ‘selfies’ with spectators and interact with the crowd.  

The tournament has benefited from considerable backing of the Shenzhen-based Genzon Group – the ”driving force” behind the tournament.  

Mr Deng Xueqin, the President of Genzon Group, explained how the company’s ethos and core values helped to determine the theme for the tournament.  

“As a company we are constantly evolving and always innovating,” he said. “It is also our philosophy for the tournament.  

“As a company we promote healthy lifestyles and a sense of fun, which is why we want people to come from far and wide to benefit from our creation of an open and innovative tournament platform. For players and spectators, the Shenzhen International will achieve a multi-win scenario. Everyone will find a home away from home and be welcomed with open arms.”     

In the year when golf returns to the Olympic Games for the first time since 1904, the Shenzhen International – co-sanctioned by the European Tour and the China Golf Association (CGA) – will offer a strong Chinese contingent a chance to stake an early claim for a place in the two-man national team to play in Brazil.

And ready to take on a strong Asian opposition, including hot young thing Li Hao Tong, Bubba Watson said he was looking forward to returning to China.  

“I have always loved playing in China, having won a world championships event in Shanghai in 2014, and will be trying hard to get another win on Chinese soil,” he said.  

“I thoroughly enjoyed competing in the Shenzhen International last year, although I didn’t play as well as I would have liked. My best memory is of the fantastic reception I received from the local fans and the venue. They made me feel very welcome, particularly as I was so far from home. For a week in April, the Shenzhen Genzon Golf Club will definitely be ‘my home course’. I can’t wait to get back.”  

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