PATTAYA, Thailand & SEOUL, South Korea--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Korean Ladies Professional Golf Association (KLPGA) will host the ‘KLPGA 2019 International Qualifying Tournament’ from August 20 to 23. This year the event will be held at the Phoenix Golf & Country Club in Pattaya, Thailand, in a four-round, 72-hole stroke-play competition.
The International Qualifying Tournament (IQT) is an annual tour event that offers an opportunity for non-Korean golfers to participate in the KLPGA Tour. In its first year, 2015, the event attracted six international golfers; the year after that, it was 20. Last year, the event, held in Malaysia, attracted 50 golfers from ten countries including Thailand, Japan, Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, China, the U.S., Canada, the Philippines, and Hong Kong.
A large field is expected this year as well, with even more benefits being offered to participants, especially international players. Like last year, the total prize money is USD 30,000, and green fees are waived, but unlike last year, the top three players will be eligible for the 2020 KLPGA Tour Qualifying Tournament Stage 3 without having to compete in a preliminary qualifying tournament. Moreover, the top five players will qualify to play on the KLPGA 2020 Dream Tour, and the players finishing the IQT ranked 6th through 10th do not have to compete in the preliminary qualifying tournament for the 2020 Dream Tour and will be eligible for the KLPGA 2020 Jump Tour.
Every year, KLPGA international rookies’ performance is of major interest to golf fans. Last year, Ploychompoo Wirairungrueng (Thailand) won the IQT, finishing at five under par 283 (73, 69, 72, 69). About the Tour she said, “I really appreciate KLPGA for giving me the opportunity to meet and compete with so many excellent international players.”
Genevieve Ling I-Rynn (Malaysia) said, “Since the KLPGA tour is so competitive, I learn a lot from just watching the other players. I decided to join the IQT to continue to play on the KLPGA tour this year.”
As of today, six international players, including Ploychompoo Wirairungrueng (Thailand), Sui Xiang (China), Takabayashi Yumi (Japan), Aratake Rui (Japan), Nishimura Miki (Japan) and Chen Yu Ju (Taiwan) have registered for the KLPGA.
Because of the heightened interest of international players, KLPGA is working to increase the competitiveness of the tour by offering more support to international players. Special services now being offered include transportation to and from tournament venues and the booking of practice rounds. It also plans to redesign its website to be more accommodating to international players. For international players living in Korea, it plans to provide Korean learning materials and cultural content.
A KLPGA official said, “We will do everything we can to make the Tour one of the best, most accommodating, most competitive tours in the world.”
More information on how to apply is available on the official IQT website at http://klpgaiqt.com/.
Korea Ladies Professional Golf Association (KLPGA)
KLPGA, since its founding in 1978 and for the last 41 years, has been promoting its brand and tour players in the interest of Korean ladies professional golf. As the organizer of tour events, it puts forth efforts to host championships and contribute to the popularization of golf and the globalization of Korean ladies professional golfers. This year, it will hold 29 KLPGA Tours, 21 Dream Tours, 16 Jump Tours, and 12 Champions Tours. KLPGA is taking the lead in developing the most advanced golf tour system using an IT-driven K-ranking system and KLPGA Data Center Service. Furthermore, to recruit international players, it has created an online and offline infrastructure for the management of IQT players and I-Tour members, and revised its website dedicated to foreign players, and offered more Korea-related content. Its ultimate goal is to become Global No. 1 tour.