Kuala Lumpur, Jan 20 (IANS) England’s rising star golfer Danny Willett and Thai stars Thongchai Jaidee and Kiradech Aphibarnrat have confirmed their participation for the inaugural Maybank Championship Malaysia at the Royal Selangor Golf Club (RSGC) next month, it was announced on Wednesday. Maybank Championship Malaysia announced that World No.19 Willett as well as leading Asian players, Thongchai Jaidee and Kiradech Aphibarnrat of Thailand will compete here from February 18 to 21, according to an Asian Tour release. 

They will join Louis Oosthuizen of South Africa and Martin Kaymer of Germany in the $3 million events sanctioned by the Asian Tour and European Tour. Their star presence will also ensure that the new event will be headline by five players inside the world’s top-40. The announcement reinforces the championship’s aspirations of ensuring the best mix of international and regional golfing talents in a Malaysian world-class tournament. In addition to the five players confirmed, the top 67 players from both the European Tour and Asian Tours will qualify for the Maybank Championship Malaysia. 

Another ten spots will be awarded to the top-10 players based on the Order of Merit from the Professional Golf Of Malaysia Tour (PGM) while up to five spots will be given to ASEAN Professionals that will be awarded based on the Asian Tour Order Of Merit, Asian Development Tour (ADT) Order Of Merit and National Professional Golfers Association of ASEAN Countries (where available) and an additional two spots will be given to Malaysian professionals. One spot will be accorded to the top player on the Middle East North African Tour (MENA). Two spots are reserved for other top players who are not members of European PGA Tour and the Asian Tour. 

The final two spots will be given to the top two amateurs that qualify — one to the highest ranked Malaysian in the Amateur World Rankings; and one to the Asian Pacific Amateur Masters Champion.

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    The IANS was founded by Indian American publisher Gopal Raju as the India Abroad News Service. It was later renamed the Indo-Asian News Service.

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