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Venetian Macao Open 2016

by SCMP

Venetian Macao Open 2016

Flamboyant Ian Poulter makes Venetian Macao Open the first stop in his comeback from injury

After four months out, Englishman will tee off in Macau alongside Ryder Cup captain Darren Clarke, South African Branden Grace and defending champion Scott Hend

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 05 October, 2016, 5:26pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 05 October, 2016, 11:14pm

Two-time World Golf Championships winner Ian Poulter will make an eagerly anticipated return following a four-month lay-off with a foot injury when he tees up for the first time at The Venetian Macao Open 2016 at the Macau Golf & Country Club next week.

One of the most flamboyant and passionate golfers in the game, the Englishman was sidelined by an arthritic joint in his right foot, which has kept him out of tournament action since June.

Poulter is a 16-time winner in his professional carer with two titles on the Asian Tour. The 40-year-old has recorded eight top-10 finishes in major championships and represented Europe five times as a player in the Ryder Cup, winning on four occasions.

At the 2016 edition of the prestigious team event last week, Poulter assumed the role of vice captain for the very first time. Prior to his injury, his 2016 season highlight was a tied-third place at the Puerto Rico Open at Coco Beach.

Poulter is no stranger to playing in Asia, but 2016 will mark his first foray into October 13-16 event in Macau as he looks to regain some form and momentum heading into the end of the season and commented:

“It has been a long road back from my injury and I am delighted to make my comeback at The Venetian Macao Open, one of the best run tournaments in Asia,” said Poulter. “It has a great field this year with Branden, Darren, Scott Hend all playing, and I look forward to reconnecting with my fans there. The Venetian Macao has a great reputation in hospitality and entertainment and I can’t wait to check that out for myself.”

WATCH: Ian Poulter discuss what is in his golf bag?

Poulter will be in good company at the 18th edition of The Venetian Macao Open 2016, with defending champion Hend, 2016 Ryder Cup captain Darren Clarke, world number 14 Branden Grace, 2014 winner Anirban Lahiri, and Chinese golfers Zhang Lianwei and Liang Wenchong all signed up.

Inaugurated in 1998, The Venetian Macao became title sponsor of the tournament in 2012 and since then, has seen it develop into one of the most prestigious professional golf tournaments in the region and the highest purse at US$1.1 million for a full-field Asian Tour event this year.

The 144-player championship will continue to be jointly organised by Sports Bureau of Macao SAR Government and the Golf Association of Macau. It is sanctioned by the Asian Tour and the Golf Association of Macau, and promoted by IMG.