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GOLF

Asians set to make their mark in world top 10 golf rankings within a decade

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 16 February, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 16 February, 2013, 5:09am

Asia will have up to four players in the world's top 10 by 2023, the Asian Tour predicted yesterday as it celebrates its 10th season this year.

Chief executive Mike Kerr also said the Asian Tour would produce at least three winners of golf's four majors and would be represented by more than 10 players at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with one medal winner by the 2020 Olympics.

Outlining the tour's vision for the next 10 years, Kerr said Asian Tour members would compete for more than US$100 million a year through a full season of 38 to 39 events by 2023. All major markets in Asia, including Vietnam, Brunei and Cambodia, would be represented with players and as host nations on the tour.

A new innovative shorter form of the game would also complement the standard 72-hole, four-day tournament on the tour's professional circuit.

"The foundation and fundamentals of the Asian Tour represent a very strong platform from which we are poised to grow. We are therefore delighted to outline our 10-year vision, in which I have every confidence," Kerr said.

"With the shift of the global economy east, coupled with the growing popularity of golf in Asia, we have every belief the Asian Tour will continue to develop over the next 10 years through the sustainable growth of existing tournaments and the expansion of the tour into new markets."

Launched as a player-led organisation in 2004 and structured similarly to the PGA Tour and European Tour, the Asian Tour kicks off its 2013 season next week with the Zaykabar Myanmar Open.

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