The Asian Tour is gearing up for one of its biggest weeks as some of the biggest names in golf head to Close House in Newcastle for the $2 million International Series England from August 17-20.
Lee Westwood, the former world No. 1 with 44 career victories — including eight on the Asian Tour — spearheads a cohort of 10 LIV Golfers set to wow the crowds over the Colt Course, situated just a few miles from Newcastle upon Tyne.
Despite being born and raised in Worksop, and an ardent Nottingham Forest fan, ‘Westy’ moved to the region a number of years ago and struck up a long-standing partnership with Close House as its attached tour professional.
Westwood said: “I’ve had the privilege of playing at home in tournament situations before, and there is truly nothing quite like it. Local excitement is building nicely with some of the players confirmed.
“I’ve been embraced by the people of Northumbria since I set up home there; their passion for sport is unrivalled and the full field will feel that during the tournament week — the atmosphere will be tremendous.”
Joining the Majesticks Team co-captain are 2018 Masters champion Patrick Reed, 2010 US Open winner Graeme McDowell and this year’s Saudi International victor Abraham Ancer. Like Ancer, whose most recent win netted a share of the US$5 million purse in Saudi Arabia, McDowell will be looking to improve on a single Asian Tour career victory, which came back in 2008 in South Korea.
Seven-time Asian Tour winner and LIV Golf player Anirban Lahiri will also make his second International Series appearance of the year, following an impressive runner-up finish at the Vietnam event back in April. On that occasion it was Kieran Vincent who emerged victorious, somewhat following in the footsteps of older brother Scott, who earned a place in the 2023 LIV Golf League by topping The International Series 2022 Order of Merit (OOM).
Spaniard Eugenio Chacarra and American Jason Kokrak also make International Series returns after teeing it up in the first event on the Asian Tour’s 2023 schedule in Oman. Meanwhile, England’s Richard Bland, Brendan Steele of the United States and South Africa’s Dean Burmester will make their debuts.