Bangalore: The second edition of the TAKE Solutions India Masters is set to showcase the region’s aspiring golfers on the Asian Development Tour (ADT) when it kicks off at the Eagleton-The Golf Village next week.
A total of 146 players from the ADT and the Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) will compete in the US$120,000 event, which has enjoyed a significant 71% increase in prize purse from the US$70,000 offered in the inaugural edition last year.
Asian Tour stars Rahil Gangjee and Rashid Khan will headline an impressive line-up of local prospects, who include title holder Chikka S, young guns Khalin Joshi, Angad Cheema, Chiragh Kumar and Abhijit Chadha in the event staged from October 28 to 31.
They will contend against a strong international field ledby Order of Merit leader Casey O’Toole of the United States as well as past ADT winners Jake Stirling of Australia, Thai veteran Thammanoon Sriroj, Janne Kaske of Finland and American Blake Snyder.
Kumar hopes to ride on his recent good run of form as he enjoyed a joint runner-up finish on the Asian Tour in Macao last week to earn full playing rights on the region’s premier Tour in 2016.
“I’m playing well right now. I just need to put forth all these together. I need to work on the mental aspects of my game as I think it is very important. I will stay focused and hopefully continue to play well next week,” said the 31-year-old Indian.
Other notable players in the field includes Asian Tour winners Digvijay Singh and Himmat Rai of India, ADT winner Sujjan Singh, also of India, as well as Canadian Lindsay Renolds and James Byrne of Scotland.
The top-five finishers on the final Order of Merit will earn playing rights in the 2016 Asian Tour season. The winner of the TAKE Solutions India Masters will take home a prize purse of US$21,000 and receive six Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR) points.
With the Olympic Games looming in 2016 where golf will be reintroduced as a medal sport, players in the region could earn their spots in Rio de Janeiro by earning OWGR points through the Asian Tour and ADT.
The ADT is celebrating its sixth season where it has grown immensely from five events in the first year in 2010 to a record 27 tournaments in 2015.