LIV Golf stars are set to take aim at the Asian Tour’s International Series event in Hong Kong, with India’s Anirban Lahiri, Australia’s Matt Jones, Spanish phenom Eugenio Chacarra and 2023 LIV Golf League Individual Champion hopeful Talor Gooch confirmed to compete in the Hong Kong Open from November 9-12 at the Hong Kong Golf Club.
They will join last year’s Open Championship winner and Gooch’s fellow LIV Individual Champion front-runner Cameron Smith, two-time Hong Kong Open victor Wade Ormsby, and local hero Taichi Kho — winner of March’s World City Championship.
The world’s top golfers are making the trip to Fanling drawn by the Hong Kong Open’s history, its new status as an event on The International Series — 10 elite-level tournaments sanctioned by the Asian Tour, providing a pathway to the LIV Golf League — and its purse of $2 million.
The 31-year-old Gooch is making his Hong Kong Open debut in record-breaking form, having won three times already this season on LIV Golf — in Adelaide, Singapore and Andalucía — becoming the first-ever player to achieve that feat on the fledgling global circuit.
“I am excited to be making my debut appearance at the Hong Kong Open in 2023. I have heard a lot about the city and the Hong Kong Golf Club from other players, and I look forward to playing in front of the knowledgeable galleries in Fanling,” said Gooch.
“Last year I didn’t get a win, so this year I was just so focused on getting an individual win. You don’t think much past the first one until you get it. I definitely didn’t have three in mind for the season, but it’s cool to be here.”
Gooch and Smith are two of the three LIV Golf stars in contention, along with American Bryson DeChambeau, for the 2023 LIV Golf Individual Champion crown to be decided at Royal Greens Golf & Country Club in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on October 13-15.
A top-10 finish for Gooch at the LIV Golf Chicago has him in contention for the individual title on 162 points in the individual standings, eight behind Smith’s leading 170.
Another confirmed star for the Hong Kong Open, Lahiri, performed even better in Chicago, finishing tied for second in what was his third top-10 finish this season.
The 36-year-old is no stranger to Fanling, with seven Asian Tour titles to his name, he has a best finish of tied for seventh at the Hong Kong Open back in 2015.
Lahiri will also be familiar with fellow headliner Smith, having finished as runner-up to the young Australian at The Players Championship in 2022.
Chacarra is ranked eighth in The International Series Order of Merit standings. The Spanish star turned pro in 2022 to join the LIV Golf League and struck gold on his fifth ever event winning the LIV Golf Invitational Bangkok.
His debut non-LIV Golf win came on The International Series at the Asian Tour’s inaugural St Andrew’s Bay Championships in August, when he defeated Matt Jones in a 10-hole playoff, the longest in Asian Tour history.
Main image: Talor Gooch. Asian Tour