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Jakarta: Asian golf legend and three-time Asian Tour number one Thongchai Jaidee of Thailand will compete in the inaugural US$750,000 Indonesian Masters next month, joining world number two Lee Westwood of England in the elite field at Royale Jakarta Golf Club.

Organisers announced today that PNTS, one of Indonesia’s fastest growing off shore bulk cargo handling companies, Garuda Indonesia, the national flag carrier, and Mercedes-Benz have also signed up as sponsors of Indonesia’s newest Asian Tour tournament from April 21 to 24, 2011.

India’s rising star Gaganjeet Bhullar, a two-time Asian Tour champion and no stranger to success in Indonesia, and Thai standout Chapchai Nirat, a three-time winner, will also feature in the Indonesian Masters which will be beamed live throughout four rounds to over 40 countries and 440 million homes worldwide.

After writing several pages in Asian golf history with his exploits, Thongchai is determined to become the inaugural champion of the Indonesian Masters.

“I am looking forward to the Indonesian Masters next month, especially when it will be played at Royale Jakarta. I have heard it is a fantastic golf course and I believe it will contribute to a very successful week of golf,” said Thongchai.

“The Indonesian Masters will be very exciting as it has attracted a truly world class player in Lee Westwood along with many other top players from the Asian Tour such as Gaganjeet Bhullar and Chapchai Nirat. I have played alongside Lee on many occasions and I’m looking forward to teeing it up with him again. I have no doubt the Indonesian Masters will be a premier tournament on the Asian Tour,” said Thongchai.

The 41-year-old Thai is presently the most successful golfer in Asia following an unprecedented three Order of Merit triumphs in 2001, 2004 and 2009. He also holds the most number of victories on the Asian Tour with 13 titles and is the leader of the career earnings ranking with over US$4 million in winnings since breaking into the scene in 1999.

In 12 seasons on the Asian Tour, the former paratrooper has finished outside the top-10 of the merit list only twice to cement his reputation as one of the most consistent performers on the region’s elite circuit.

“I owe my success very much to the Asian Tour and it is tremendous to see new tournaments like the Indonesian Masters coming up on our Schedule. I will always support the Asian Tour,” said Thongchai.

Bhullar, 22, broke through in a big way at the 2009 Indonesian President Invitational and he will be determined to secure another victory in the country when he tees up at the Indonesian Masters. Last year, he won the Asian Tour International in Thailand while earlier this season, he wrote a small slice of history by becoming the first Indian to win a European Challenge Tour tournament.

The 28-year-old Chapchai will be looking to add the Indonesian Masters to his list of victories which include the TCL Classic in China, Vietnam Masters and SAIL Open in India where he set a world scoring record for 72 holes 

Kyi Hla Han, Executive Chairman, Asian Tour, welcomed PNTS, Garuda Indonesia and Mercedes-Benz on board the Indonesian Masters sponsorship platform.

“On behalf of our talented players, I would like to extend our fullest appreciation to PNTS, Garuda Indonesia and Mercedes-Benz for their strong support towards the Indonesian Masters. They are three of the biggest companies in Indonesia and we are delighted to have them on board with us,” said Han.

Photo - Asian Tour 

Asian Tour 

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