Golfers competing in FLC Vietnam Masters at FLC Golf Link Samson, Thanh Hoa Province, December 2020. Photo courtesy of Vietnam Golf Association.
Vietnam Golf Association (VGA) said local professional golf tournaments would make a strong comeback after the haunting Covid-19 outbreak.
The association revealed it would spend VND350 billion (over $15 million) on a total 32 tournaments for the 2021-2024 seasons.
VGA Tour 2021 will kick off with Vietnam Masters (May 10-15), followed by Vietnam Open (June 7-12), National Championship (Aug. 9-14), Challenge (Sept. 6-11) and Tour Championship (Dec. 13-18). Each event would have a prize pool between VND1-1.5 billion ($43-64 million).
The number of professional tournaments would increase to eight next year before climbing to nine in 2023 and 10 in 2024.
The string of tournaments in the upcoming years is contrary to 2020 when Vietnam only hosted one professional and four amateur tournaments due the global pandemic.
VGA explained it would strive to develop professional golfing tournaments on par with Asian Development Tour, with a relationship analogous to the Korn Kerry Tour to PGA Tour and Challenge Tour to European Tour, to attract top golfers from across the continent.
Vietnam received the World’s Best Golf Destination 2019 award at World Golf Awards in the UAE last October and won the Asia Best Golf Destination prize for the third consecutive year.
VGA Tour 2021 will also feature six amateur events this year, opening with Union Cup in March.
Amateurs, therefore, would have the opportunity to prep for the 31st SEA Games, scheduled for Nov. 21 to Dec. 2 in Hanoi, with golf listed among its 40 disciplines.
According to VGA, there were over 70,000 people playing golf as a leisure sport in the country in 2018, up from 10,000 in 2009. Vietnam operates more than 30 golf courses, many of international standard.