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YIN AND CHANG TRIUMPH IN MISSION HILLS JACK NICKLAUS CHAMPIONSHIP

2015-05-25

The teenage boys and girls taking part in this week’s Jack Nicklaus Championship at Mission Hills in China are doing more than simply competing in a junior golf tournament – they are challenging themselves, having fun and making friends.

Stormy weather could not dampen the enthusiasm of totally 110 players from eleven countries and territories – China, Hong Kong, Chinese Taipei, France, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines, India, Malaysia, Korea and Myanmar – who battled for honours on Norman Course at Mission Hills Dongguan, the most difficult course in Asia.

“It has been wonderful to see so many talented young players showcasing their skills on Asia’s most hard-to-conquer tournament course. The narrow fairways, surrounded by long grass and dense forest vegetation contribute to the course's difficulty index of over 150, which is one of the highest in Asia. So it was a fantastic experience and a great learning curve for junior golfers.” said Mission Hills Group Vice Chairman Mr Tenniel Chu.

“Golf will be making its Olympic reappearance next year and Mission Hills’ support for the Olympic movement and golf’s return to the Games is well documented and we are delighted to be enhancing this via Jack Nicklaus Junior Championship, one of our world famous junior golf tournaments.

“It is recognized that Mission Hills places great emphasis on junior golf and it truly fulfils our vision to grow the junior game in China and the region. While congratulating our deserving winners, my sincere thanks go to all the players who have represented their countries and the game of golf with such distinction this week.”

The Jack Nicklaus Junior Championship, first played in 2008, is the eighth edition this year and one of the signature events in Mission Hills’ massive junior development programme that will see some 41 tournaments staged in 2015.

The promising Chinese teenager Yin Fengru fired rounds of 74, 68 and 74 to be boys’ overall champion while Chinese Taipei’s Chang Yachun was crowned girls’ overall champion with an aggregate score of 218.

Yin’s victory guarantees him a place in a forthcoming One Asia Nanshan China Masters while Chang’s success means she will be teeing off against some of the biggest names in women’s golf in the World Ladies Championship at Mission Hills Haikou next March.

China’s Zhang Zihong won the boys’ 15-17 age group while Chang Ting Shuo of Chinese Taipei was the winner of the boys’ 11-14 category.

In the girls’ competition, Lin Jiaxin from China was the 15-17 age group winner while Mikhaella Fortuna of the Philippines was first in the 11-14 group.

The Overall Champions in both Boys & Girls Category and the top three finishers in each age group will graduate to the Nicklaus Junior Championship, at Bear Lakes-Links in the US, and to the Mission Hills Golf Series Junior Tour Grand Final 2015. In addition to that, the Overall Winners in both Boys & Girls Category will be invited to play in the Faldo Series Asia Grand Final 2015 at Mission Hills Golf Club.

Nicklaus, the 18-time Major winner, commented: “The game of golf is not about just winning or losing, it’s about playing the game, playing together, representing your country and representing the game of golf and its future around the world. I believe that all the boys and girls who participated in this tournament had a great time, played good golf, enjoyed camaraderie and had a lot of fun this week.”

This year, for the second time, scores in the Jack Nicklaus Junior Championship contribute to the China Golf Association’s Junior Rankings. Results from the event are already factored in to the World Amateur Golf Rankings.