Thai legend Thongchai Jaidee announced today that he will return to the Asian Development Tour (ADT) to host the second edition of his own tournament, Thongchai Jaidee Foundation 2016, fromDecember 1 to 4.
A total of 144 players will head to the award-winning Black Mountain Golf Club in Hua Hin, Thailand, for the four million baht (approximately US$115,770) event, which will be the Tour’s first stop in Thailand this season.
The field will consists of 24 invite spots, which includes the man himself, while the remaining 120 spots will be split equally between the ADT and the All Thailand Golf Tour.
Thongchai, who won the 100th Open de France in July and finished tied-15th at the recently-concluded Olympic Games, is the second player following fellow Thai golf great Boonchu Ruangkit to host his own tournament on the secondary circuit of the Asian Tour.
“The ADT has grown immensely over the years. It has been a great platform for budding golfers to gain playing experiences and hone their skills before moving on to the bigger stage. The Tour has also produced a handful of upcoming young players who are just waiting to burst onto the scene.
“We have enjoyed a successful event last year where Kiradech (Aphibarnrat) won. I am sure the field will be very competitive again and we can look forward to some world-class action from the rising stars of the game this December,” said the 46-year-old Thai.
Besides aiming to create more playing opportunities and unearth more talents, Thongchai also hopes to draw attention to his Thongchai Jaidee Foundation through the staging of this event.
The decorated Thai star had launched his foundation in 2009 to help the under-privileged golfers in his hometown of Lopburi. The foundation not only supports professional golf for men but also women professional golf in Thailand through the Thai LPGA.
“At the Thongchai Jaidee Foundation, we helped raised kids by giving scholarships, golf lessons and accommodation. The aim is to provide them with the knowledge of the game which could probably earn them a living one day.
“We received an official letter from Thailand Ministry of Finance recently to certify that the foundation has been exempted from tax thanks to our contributions to the society over the years. It was a great milestone for us,” added Thongchai.
Thongchai holds an unprecedented three Order of Merit crowns and 13 titles on the Asian Tour and is currently ranked 45th position in the world.
Asian Tour Associate Director Irfan Hamid said: “On behalf of the ADT, we are very pleased to be sanctioning the Thongchai Jaidee Foundation 2016 for the second consecutive year.
“It’s great to see successful golfers like Thongchai giving back to the game. I am sure his tournament will continue to inspire the younger generation of golfers across the region.”
All ADT events offer Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) points. The winner will receive six OWGR points while the top six players and ties will also earn points based on a sliding scale.
The top-five finishers on the final Order of Merit will secure their Asian Tour cards for 2017.
The sponsors of the Thongchai Jaidee Foundation 2016 include SINGHA, Black Mountain Golf Club, Betagro, and Idemitsu.
For more information on the ADT, please visit www.asiandevelopmenttour.com