Back for a 62nd staging this November – and for the first time since 2020, Hong Kong’s most prestigious sporting event is returning with even more lustre after being named as one of 10 events on the International Series.
2020 and 2017 champion Ormsby also has his sights set on securing a second International Series title of this Asian Tour season – and a coveted qualifying spot for the LIV Golf League that would come should victory help see him to the top of the Order of Merit.
“The International Series is number one on my schedule and Hong Kong being a part of that is a huge bonus for me because I’ve had good success around that golf course,” said the typically understated Ormsby.
“I had a win in Thailand early in the year and that put me in pretty good position, so I’m going to keep my head down and I’m hopefully in the mix there in Hong Kong. I’ve just got to do my stuff and play well.”
International Series status – and the US$2 million prize pool in Hong Kong that came with it – has added spice to an already red-hot return for Hong Kong’s Open after a pandemic-enforced break of almost four years.
Last time the world’s best players converged at Fanling for the historic championship, Ormsby prevailed by four strokes to win his second title. The now 43-year-old has maintained his form since, most recently claiming the International Series Thailand title back in March.
This time around, he’ll have to contend with the challenge that is sure to come from the two marquee stars announced to date: 2022 The Open Championship winner Cameron Smith and local star Taichi Kho, historic winner of the World City Championship presented by the Hong Kong Golf Club back earlier this year with a number of other top stars set to be announced in the coming weeks.
This year’s field is a reflection of the strength in depth and talent that the International Series brings and Ormsby is under no illusions about the task that lies ahead.
“These International Series events have great, great fields, and the Hong Kong Open has, too,” says Ormsby.
“It’s not just Asian Tour golfers. We’ve got a lot of Australians and Europeans, and you will see some Americans coming over and playing because it’s another pathway to LIV and it’s a very lucrative pathway.
“I’m really looking forward to it, especially an event with the prestige and history that the Hong Kong Open has got.”
The prestige of the International Series hasn’t been lost on Smith, either.
The man who has racked up two wins and four top-10 finishes already in 2023 is itching to get involved for the first time, coming back to a course where he finished T9 at his only previous appearance, back in 2014.
“I’ve actually been keeping up with the International Series a lot. I love watching it,” said Smith.
“I love the fact that the Series has gone to different parts of the world where maybe they haven’t seen much professional golf before. I think it’s doing great. So a really unique opportunity for the International Series, but also for the players.
“Players have the opportunity to get on LIV and that’s what everyone’s chasing; I’m hoping Wade can get up there at the end of the year and make a good run at it,” Smith added.
In addition to the world-class golf on offer, the Hong Kong Open’s Fan Village will once again entertain tens of thousands of visitors across the event week. The Fan Village is the place to enjoy all the sun and fun off the course at the beautiful Hong Kong Golf Club with a host of activities and entertainment with DJ performances, walking bands, golf simulators and other sport games, premier food and beverage offerings, shopping, face painting and more.
Tickets for the Hong Kong Open 2023 are now available via Ticketflap at www.ticketflap.com/hongkongopen2023.
Admission on Thursday and Friday, 9-10 November is free while daily prices for Saturday 11 and Sunday 12 November are $200 per day or $300 for a weekend pass.