Golf's greatest stage awaits the champion of this week's Asian Amateur Championship - and Hong Kong's brightest talents are right in the hunt. The inaugural event, a four-day stroke-play tournament devised by the Augusta National Golf Club in tandem with the Royal & Ancient and the Asia Pacific Golf Confederation, tees off at Mission Hills Golf Club in Shenzhen today with six Hong Kong hopefuls in the field. The 117 players, drawn from 30 countries across the region, will have their sights set on a place at the 2010 Masters, the prize for the champion. Without doubt the most important amateur golf tournament to ever take place in Asia - and a clear illustration of the growing importance golf's hierarchy places on this part of the world - the AAC is one of only five amateur events to offer the chance to compete in the Masters. The winner and runner-up are also guaranteed a place in international final qualifying for the British Open at St Andrews. The ACC tournament will be broadcast to more than 150 countries. 'It's amazing to think I'll be playing for a chance to get into the Masters,' said 16-year-old Liu Lok-tin, who joins Steven Lam Tsz-fung, Jason Hak Shun-yat, Roderick Staunton, Shinichi Mizuno and Terrence Ng as Hong Kong's representatives. 'I've stayed up overnight to watch the tournament on TV ever since I started playing five years ago,' Liu said. 'Amen Corner, the unbelievable course conditioning, the Green Jacket - it's an incredible incentive for all of us. It's going to be a really exciting week.' Although Liu's strapping frame enables him to average over 300 yards off the tee, which will make him one of the longest players at Mission Hills, Hong Kong's best chances of success are likely to rest with 16-year-old Lam and 15-year-old Hak. Tsim Sha Tsui-born Hak, who now lives in Florida, made headlines around the world at last year's UBS Hong Kong Open after becoming the youngest ever player to make the cut at a European Tour event, while Lam enters the event in a rich vein of form. Two weeks ago at the Faldo Series Hong Kong qualifying event at Kau Sai Chau, the St Joseph's College student carded a stellar course-record 65 in the first round before adding a 68 on day two to win by a staggering 25 strokes. That performance came on the back of a made cut at the Asia-Pacific Panasonic Open in Japan, only his second ever professional event. Nevertheless, national coach Brad Schadewitz is under no illusions about the challenge his young players face. 'The level of play is going to be the best Asia has ever seen at an amateur event,' Schadewitz said. 'Realistically, our guys will be looking forward to future editions of the tournament and using this as a tremendous experience. You never know, of course. Steven is playing well, but at the same time he may be a bit young at this point. There are going to be many outstanding players on show.' Two of those players are South Korea's Han Chang-won and Kim Meen-whee, who finished first and second at last month's Nomura Cup [the Asia-Pacific amateur team championship], while the event's highest ranked player is Australia's Daniel Nisbet, who is 44th in the R&A World Amateur Golf Rankings. Also in the field is Mu Hu, the David Leadbetter-trained 18-year-old, who will be flying the flag for China.