Asian Tour’s Spat with Europe Takes Korean Twist

I dislike dragging story angles over too long a stretch of time to the extent that they become tiring and predictable.

However, there are times when it simply cannot be avoided, such as new winners on the PGA Tour and the European Tour, as happened last weekend.

When Asian Tour officials last month got in a huff about the European Tour’s “colonial” advance on its turf by deciding to unilaterally stage a tournament in India, I felt I might be in for the long run on this one.

Sure enough, the story drags on, with the European Tour pulling another rabbit out of the hat. This time, they have announced a $2.5 million tournament in Korea in March next year, which, like the Indian Masters in February, does not involve the Asian Tour.

The press release announcing the tournament said talks with the Asian Tour were ongoing. Asian Tour executive chairman, Kyi Hla Han, however, was having none of it. He accused the European Tour of a colonial attitude in their decision to waltz into Asia and plant tournaments with impunity.

In a statement on their website, Han said:

“The European Tour continues to proceed on its expansion programme to colonise Asia with the announcement of a Korean event today without the official involvement of the Asian Tour. This represents the European Tour’s blatant disregard towards the Asian Tour, which is the official regional sanctioning body for professional golf in Asia.”

Han has nothing against European Tour events in Asia, after all, the two bodies co-sanction nine of them. He is upset because the Europeans are bypassing the region’s governing body for the latest two tournaments. The Asian Tour said it would table a motion on the issue at the International Federation of PGA Tours meeting during the British Open.

Leave a Reply