October 16, 2006 – Major winners Retief Goosen and Michael Campbell will head into next month’s US$2 million UBS Hong Kong Open on a high after another one-two finish on the Asian Tour.
The duo showed their world-class credentials at the Volkswagen Masters-China on Sunday (October 15, 2006) when, for the second successive year, South African Goosen took the title and New Zealand’s Campbell finished runner-up.
The pair will be among the favourites when the UBS Hong Kong Open is staged at the Hong Kong Golf Club in Fanling on November 16-19.
They will be part of a stellar field that also includes defending champion Colin Montgomerie, PGA Tour star KJ Choi, current Asian No.1 Jeev Milkha Singh and China’s top player, Liang Wenchong.
Goosen was delighted with his three-stroke victory in the Volkswagen Masters-China at Yalong Bay Golf Club in Sanya, Hainan.
“It’s a great feeling to defend a title,” said the two-time US Open champion. “It’s the first time I’ve won a professional title back to back. I’ve done it before as an amateur, so it will be great coming back next year to give myself a chance of making it a hat-trick.
“I’ve had quite a slow year up to now and have been working hard on my game. I’ve just started working with a swing coach and I feel that my game is improving.”
Goosen began the day with a five-shot lead and was never threatened as he closed with a one-under-par 71 for a total of 21-under 267.
Campbell, the 2005 US Open champion, had two bogeys in his first four holes but fought back to card a four-under 68. Scotsman Simon Dunn, also with a 68, was a further shot back in third.
Goosen said he was relishing the prospect of making his first visit to Hong Kong next month.
“I’m looking forward to playing the UBS Hong Kong Open,” he said. “I’ve heard that it is a great course and, of course, Hong Kong itself is renowned the world over to be a great city for restaurants and shopping.”
Hong Kong fans can anticipate another instalment of the Goosen-Campbell rivalry when the pair bring their talents to Fanling.
“It’s great news for the UBS Hong Kong Open that these two fantastic players are obviously in good form,” said Martin Capstick of tournament promoter Parallel Media Group.
“That’s two years running that Goosen has pipped Campbell in China, so we can expect to see Campbell going all out for revenge in Hong Kong.
“With Montgomerie returning to defend his title and a host of other top-class players on show, all the signs point to the UBS Hong Kong Open being a thrilling event.”
The UBS Hong Kong Open – once again co-sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours – is one of the oldest and most prestigious golf tournaments in Asia.
It was first staged in 1959 and has been won by some of the game’s all-time greats, including Major champions such as Peter Thomson, Greg Norman, Bernhard Langer, Tom Watson and José Maria Olazábal.