Chengdu (China): The 25th anniversary of the Volvo China Open will see China’s National Open Golf Championship return to the city of Chengdu from May 2-5, 2019
To be staged at The Tradition at Wolong Valley in the provincial capital of Sichuan, the RMB 20 million tournament will return to Chengdu for the first time in eight years as the world’s most populous nation celebrates 25 years of its flagship professional golf tournament.
Organised by the China Golf Association and sanctioned by the European Tour, the 2019 Volvo China Open makes a welcome return to the Rich Jacobson-designed course – venue for Volvo China Open qualifying events in both 2013 and 2014 – which was opened in 2012 and is located south east of Chengdu.
“Twenty-five is a very special number as China’s National Open celebrates a quarter of a century on the nation’s sporting calendar,” said Sven De Smet, chairman of the Volvo China Open board.
“It is an important milestone in what has been a significant development of golf in China, as well as underlining the strong and visionary partnership between Volvo and the China Golf Association.
“This will be the first time the tournament has been staged in Chengdu since 2011,” added De Smet. “The success of that event demonstrated the enthusiasm of people from southwest China and the local fans’ love for the event. When we were last in Chengdu, images of major champions Padraig Harrington and Sergio Garcia holding two of the city’s baby pandas proved popular around the world and helped further boost the popularity of the Volvo China Open.
“I believe with the full support of The Tradition at Wolong Valley, the vibrant and cosmopolitan city of Chengdu will be a fitting setting for the 25th anniversary celebrations of the Volvo China Open.”
Over the past 24 years under the support of the China Golf Association, the Volvo China Open has gradually grown into a top professional tournament boasting an international line-up, including winners such as Alex Levy of France, England’s Paul Casey, Belgian Nicolas Colsaerts and 2018 champion Alexander Bjork of Sweden.
A 7,209-yard, par-72 course, The Tradition at Wolong Valley is the closest golf club to Chengdu city centre and offers some of the best playing conditions in the region.
Jimmy Han, club representative, said The Tradition is delighted to have been recognised by the Volvo China Open.
“We’ve had the honour of hosting two Volvo China Open qualifying events and enjoyed a successful relationship with Volvo,” he said.
“The staging of next year’s Volvo China Open will give Wolong Valley a chance to show its best side to the world. As the name of ‘The Tradition at Wolong Valley’ indicates, the club has committed to carrying forward the tradition of golf as a gentlemen’s game. As a club we are young and actively in the process growing our membership base, The Tradition is excited to share the Volvo China Open with our current and future club members.
“We believe that hosting the Volvo China Open will further enhance the image and popularity of Wolong Valley club, as well enrich the members’ experience. In the next eight months, we will do our best to work closely with the Volvo China Open committee to make sure all players, sponsors, officials and media will fully experience the hospitality of The Tradition at Wolong Valley, and make the 25th anniversary of the Volvo China Open a memorable one.”
By Alan Ewens