Woods to return to Turkey for European event
Tiger Woods, the world’s No. 1-ranked golfer, will play in this year’s Turkish Airlines Open.
The Turkish event is part of the European Tour’s Final Series, a $30.5 million quartet of tournaments that will decide the European Tour’s overall champion.
Woods played in Turkey last year in the eight-man $5.2 million Turkish Airlines World Golf Final, won by Justin Rose. This year’s Turkish tournament will consist of 78 players.
“I had a great time during my first visit to Turkey,” Woods said in a statement. “Turkish Airlines, the Turkish Golf Federation and the fans who came to watch made it a really special event, and I’m looking forward to playing there once again.”
The $7 million tournament will be staged Nov. 7-10 at the Montgomerie Maxx Royal in Belek. It is the third event in the Euro Tour’s Final Series and ultimately will decide who qualifies for the next week’s season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Chubby Chandler of International Sports Management, who is promoting the tournament, said it was important to have Woods at the stop.
"We almost based the date around which week he could play, and this week suited the European Tour and Tiger Woods," Chandler told PA Sport in London. "The other 77 names in the field will not be familiar to Turkish fans, but Tiger Woods is. To have the World No. 1 there, it always makes it special if a European Tour player can win with Tiger in the field."
It will be the second European Tour event for Woods this season. He missed the cut in Abu Dhabi to start the European Tour season. The Turkish Airlines Open is held the same week as the McGladrey Classic at Sea Island, Ga., on the PGA Tour, which Woods has never played.
Turkish officials hope that having Woods at the tournament will boost Turkey's bid to host the 2020 Olympics.
– The Associated Press contributed