By Matt Smith
Some big names in the world of golf made the most of their trip to Singapore to check out the local sights ahead of this week’s Asian Tour International Series event at Tanah Merah Country Club.
LIV Golf stars will be competing alongside the cream of the Asian Tour in Singapore, with former Masters winner Patrick Reed and Zimbabwe’s International Series England champ Scott Vincent getting out and about along with Asian Tour Order of Merit leader Sihwan Kim and local hero Mardan Mamat.
The quartet took in Gardens By The Bay and went for a walk along the OCBC Skyway — two of Singapore’s biggest tourist attractions.
LIV Golf ambassador Reed said: “It’s my first time here in Singapore, and it’s very exciting to be here. I’ve heard from many players on the PGA Tour, the European Tour and the Asian Tour about how amazing and beautiful this place is, and to fly in last night and drive in and see the lights, and then experience this morning, it is definitely living up to expectations already.
“I’ve always loved experiencing new things, trying food and different cultures and making new friends in different places. I can’t wait to experience the rest of the week and play a proper golf course which can get challenging.”
Vincent, aiming for back-to-back International Series wins after his one-shot victory in the $2million event at Slaley Hall in June, was delighted to be back in Singapore, to catch up with old friends and give himself another chance of success. He said: “I haven’t been here for about two years, and I love coming here, it is good to come here and spend some time with some very close friends. Every week is an opportunity, a chance for me to get better and go through my routines and my daily goals, and that’s how I treat every week. I visualise winning – ultimately that is out of my control, so I just have to focus on doing my best.”
For Singapore veteran Mamat, the strong field and home comforts make it a special occasion. He said: “It is always nice to play a tournament at home in Singapore. It is nice to sleep on your own bed and prepare for a tournament. Of course, once you have a major winner playing in a tournament, most of the Singaporeans would look forward to seeing him play, and it is a great occasion for us, especially as we celebrate National Day today.”
Sihwan added: “It is very good to be back in Singapore and I’m really looking forward to playing here this week, my game is in good shape and hopefully my putting will be on par, and we will see how it goes. I played here in January this year, and the course is great. When the wind gets up it can be hard, so let’s see how it goes.”
The Singapore event is the first of two back-to-back tournaments, with the International Series Korea event taking place next week on the Lotte SkyHill course on Jeju Island from August 18-21. Both events offer $1.5m in prize money.
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