Campbell is banking on a double

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 09 October, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 09 October, 2005, 12:00am

Michael Campbell, winner of the HSBC World Match Play Championship and the US Open this year, has confirmed he will go for the double at next month's inaugural Champions tournament, also sponsored by the banking group, in China.

Campbell will look to follow up his US$1,840,000 first prize at Wentworth by collecting a further US$833,300 in Shanghai for an unprecedented US$2,673,300 total.

It won't be easy though as Tiger Woods is playing in China's first tournament to offer points towards the world rankings.

The event offers a total purse of US$5 million - the biggest in Asia - and takes place at the Sheshan International Golf Club in Shanghai from November 10-13.

The tournament is being co-sanctioned by the European Tour, the Asian Tour, the PGA Tour of Australasia, the Sunshine Tour and the China Golf Association.

Campbell, whose win at the World Match Play Championship in September - he beat Ireland's Paul McGinley in the final - lifted him to number one on the European Tour Order of Merit list, is already looking forward to the Champions event.

'I've had a fantastic year, winning my first major and then the World Match Play Championship and, of course, taking home the biggest cheque of my career.

'I love the history of the Match Play and am thrilled that my name will be listed among winners who include golfing legends Arnold Palmer, Gary Player and Jack Nicklaus. At the same time, I think it would be special to be the first-ever winner of the Champions, an event that will undoubtedly become a very important part of our golfing calendar. The Champions gives me a great opportunity to kick-start my 2006 season and to increase my world ranking.'

This new tournament will bring together title winners across the four sanctioning tours, along with many of the world's leading players through the qualification criteria, including the top 50 in the world golf rankings as at September 12 this year. Eight Chinese players have been invited in a move to involve local talent and support the sport's development.