Stars set to come out for Mission Hills World Cup

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 31 August, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 31 August, 2011, 12:00am


Five major champions, including Masters winner Charl Schwartzel and US Open titleholder Rory McIlroy, will represent their countries as the 18 exempt nations confirmed their pairings yesterday for the Omega Mission Hills World Cup at Hainan Island in November.

Schwartzel is joined in a powerful South African line-up by 2010 British Open golf champion Louis Oosthuizen, while McIlroy will reprise his partnership for Northern Ireland with last year's US Open champion Graeme McDowell, a potent duo who earned a share of second place behind Edoardo and Francesco Molinari in 2009. The Italian brothers will defend their title at the Mission Hills Resort, from November 24 to 27.

Last year's US PGA champion, Martin Kaymer of Germany, will have Alex Cejka as his partner for the fourth successive time, the combination having finished sixth in 2007, fifth in 2008 and sixth in 2009 when the event was played at Mission Hills' Shenzhen/Dongguan complex.

The United States will be represented by Matt Kuchar and his partner Gary Woodland.

'I do a lot with our military charities and getting a chance to play for the USA means more than I can describe,' Woodland said. 'Matt is a very consistent player, always in play ... I have a little length to add to it, so hopefully I can drive it out there, he can knock it close and we both get our putters going.'

England's Ian Poulter chose close friend Justin Rose as his partner four years after they finished fourth on their only appearance as a double act.

'I'm a very patriotic guy and the chance to play for England on the world stage is one that I always relish,' Poulter said. 'I ... really enjoy the format of the World Cup.'

Robert Karlsson, a player with a powerful World Cup pedigree, returns with a new partner in Alex Noren, recent winner of the Nordea Masters in his native Sweden. Karlsson, former European No 1, captured the title with Henrik Stenson in 2008, and the same pairing shared second place with Ireland two years ago.

Spain's Alvaro Quiros has nominated the veteran Miguel Angel Jimenez as his ally, with Martin Laird and Stephen Gallacher representing 2007 champions Scotland, and Jamie Donaldson and Rhys Davies linking up for Wales.

The Molinaris are joined by another set of brothers, Camilo and Manuel Villegas of Colombia, while Denmark's Anders Hansen - third in the recent US PGA Championship - elected to play with Thomas Bjorn.

Japan's Yuta Ikeda joins forces with Tetsuji Hiratsuka, while Thongchai Jaidee competes for Thailand alongside Kiradech Aphibarnrat.

China will be represented by Liang Wenchong and Zhang Xinjun.