Young Thai Nitithorn Thippong, who earned his breakthrough Asian Tour win at the inaugural edition of The DGC Open presented by Mastercard a year ago, returns ready to face a strong home challenge fronted by the likes of Gaganjeet Bhullar and Shiv Kapur.
The ever-smiling Nitithorn then added a further two titles post his victory at the Delhi Golf Club including the International Series Singapore and the Bangkok Open that helped the 26-year-old to a fourth-place finish on the Asian Tours’ Order of Merit.
The DGC Open is back this year with a 50 per cent hike in prize money, from half a million dollars last year to $750,000 made available to the field this March.
Bhullar finished fourth at last year’s DGC Open and thereafter added a record 10th Asian Tour win at the Mandiri Indonesian Open in Jakarta and is currently hunting for a top-10 finish at the International Series Oman.
Among other Indian stars Thippong will need to contend with are Mastercard brand ambassador Shiv Kapur and 2022 runner-up Ajeetesh Sandhu, who missed out in the playoff on the final day at the DGC.
Then there are the likes of Veer Ahlawat and Yuvraj Sandhu, who were tied for sixth place while Shamim Khan, Yashas Chandra and M. Dharma took a share of tenth place.
The field this time too will have 132 players, and golfers from around 25 countries are expected for the week which will be the sixth event on the world’s third-largest men’s professional golf tour that offers around $50 million in all as prize money for the season.
With over a dozen representatives on the Asian Tour, India is once again expected to provide a stiff challenge, particularly for the large contingent from Thailand that is expected to fly in for the 2023 edition of The DGC Open.
The Asian Tour has also been hugely boosted by a tie-up with the Saudi Arabia-backed LIV Golf League that is supporting four International Series events in the first half of the 2023 season.
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