Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia 2011 - A Showcase of International Golfing Event

Better prize money and increase in field size and number of competition days on the cards

KUALA LUMPUR, 11 July, 2011 – Sime Darby Berhad and event organisers, IMG, have announced that the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia 2011 will be even a greater showcase this year - offering better prize money, increase in the field size and number of playing days on the cards come October.

The tournament, to be played over 72 holes (an increase from last year’s 54 holes), will see the prize money increased by US$100,000 to a new high of US$1.9 million. The field size will also be expanded to 72 players from 60 last year and will comprise the leading 62 players from the LPGA money list and 10 sponsor invites.

This year’s Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia will be held from 13-16 October at the Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club’s East Course. Sime Darby and IMG recently confirmed that two Malaysian golfers, Kelly Tan and Jean Chua, would receive two of the sponsors’ invites for the 2011 championship. Rising star Tan ended in a commendable 32nd to finish as the leading local player in last year’s Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia, while Jean Chua recently qualified for the US Open 2011.

Last year’s Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia was won in spectacular style by a fast-finishing Jimin Kang of South Korea, who made birdies on three of the final four holes to edge out the legendary Julie Inkster for the title. The field also included nine of the top 10 players on the Rolex Rankings and five Malaysians.

Dato’ Abd Wahab Maskan, Sime Darby Berhad’s Group Chief Operating Officer and Managing Director of Sime Darby Property, said the improvements made in the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia 2011 reinforces the Group’s commitment to making the event one of the flagship dates in Malaysian and Asian sports calendar.

“This is also in line with our Company’s philosophy of promoting sports development in the local and regional arena especially in advancing local sports talents through international sports collaboration such as the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia 2011.”

“The increase in the number of world’s best players playing for more days for a greater prize purse is indeed good news for sports fans for this year’s championship. I am delighted to also state that there will be many more exciting announcements about the 2011 Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia in the coming months and we look forward to putting on another great show for all of Malaysia in October this year,” he added.

Kang, who pocketed US$270,000 for her 2010 Sime Darby LPGA victory, is eager to return. “Last year’s Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia was an incredible experience for all of us on the LPGA Tour, visiting such a dynamic new city. To win at Kuala Lumpur Golf & Country Club was a special privilege for me personally, so I am very excited here that this event is going to continue to grow as one of the Tour’s best and become something even more special with its expansion in 2011.”

Robbie Henchman, Senior Vice President, Global Co-Managing Director, IMG Golf said: “The extension of the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia into a 72-hole event along with the growth in the prize fund and field are commensurate with our vision to building this tournament into Malaysia’s flagship international event – not just in golf, but in sports. With our partners at Sime Darby, we are proud to showcase Malaysia as a destination for major events and to build opportunities through golf for all walks of life in Malaysia.”

Sime Darby has used the Sime Darby LPGA Malaysia 2010 as a platform for a variety of grassroots campaigns in the golf game, including the Sime Darby Development Programme, as well as a range of charitable initiatives.

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