Lefty headlines strong Singapore field

Phil Mickelson, Graeme McDowell, Padraig Harrington and YE Yang have all given the Barclays Singapore Open the thumbs up.

Phil Mickelson, Graeme McDowell, Padraig Harrington and YE Yang have all given the Barclays Singapore Open the thumbs up.

And the four are not the only big guns who’ll be teeing off in this $6 million Asian Tour event at Singapore’s Sentosa Golf Club on November 10.

Jointly sanctioned by the European and Asian Tours, Asia’s richest tournament is expecting to announce some more big names in the near future

For the second successive season, a starting field of 204 players will compete on both The Serapong and The Tanjong courses at Sentosa Golf Club, the Asian Tour has announced..

Players will play on both courses for the first two days but after the halfway cut they will go back to The Serapong for both weekend rounds.

Robert Morrice, Chairman and Chief Executive, Asia Pacific, Barclays PLC said he saw the Barclays Singapore Open is being one of the most prestigious golf tournaments in Asia.

“Since our sponsorship began in 2006,”:he said this week, “the tournament has witnessed an ever-increasing field of players and size of prize purse.

“We feel that the commitment and passion for success expressed in this world-class event is a true reflection of what Barclays brings to our clients every day – quality, confidence and focus,” he added, getting in a bit of marketing punt .

Four-time Major champion Mickelson has competed in the last four Barclays Singapore Opens with his best finish coming in 2008 when he ended ninth.

The American, a three-time Mssters winner and one-time PGA Champion who claimed his 39th victory on the US PGA Tour at the Shell Houston Open this year, is currently ranked number 10 in the world.

McDowell, the popular winner of the 2010 US Open, tied for third in last year’s Barclays Singapore Open and was equal fifth in 2009. He will be chasing his eighth victory on The European Tour when he tees off at Sentosa.

Yang, who competed in Singapore last year for the first time, shot to fame in 2009 when he became the first Asian to win a Major after overtaking American Tiger Woods in the final round of the US PGA Championship.

Last year he claimed the Korea Open and the Volvo China Open, adding to his Korea Open and Champions Tournament wins in 2006.

Harrington narrowly lost to Indian Jeev Milkha Singh in the 2008 Barclays Singapore Open. That came at the end of a year that saw him reach stardom by winning both the Open Championship and US PGA Championship.

He also claimed the Open Championship in 2007 and has truly established himself as one of Europe’s finest ever golfers.

Speaking about the courses in play this year, Low Teo Ping, President of Sentosa Golf Club. said: “Both will be challenging with speeds in excess of 12 on the Stimpmeter and some dramatic changes, especially to hole six on The Serapong.

“Our golf course team will also be complemented by some 50 specialist volunteers from 10 countries and we are confident of being able to deliver another premier tournament with our partners.”

A total of 77 players from the Asian Tour and 77 from The European Tour will line up at the start.

Ten sponsor invitations and 22 places will go to members of the China, Indian, Japanese, Korean and ASEAN PGA Tours.

The Singapore PGA will receive four spots and four berths will be available for the Singapore Golf Association’s leading amateurs.

A qualifying tournament to be held on November 1 on The Tanjong will make five more places available.

This year marks the 48th staging of Singapore’s national Open.