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GOLF >Turkish Airlines Open gears up to host golf stars once more

BELEK

The star-studded lineup for the Nov. 13-16 Turkish Airlines Open includes last year’s winner Victor Dubuisson, Martin Kaymer, Lee Westwood, Henrik Stenson and world number four Sergio Garcia

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British golfer Lee Westwood.

British golfer Lee Westwood.

Europe’s finest golfers and many of the world’s greatest will be back in Antalya’s famous golf resort Belek next month for one of the most exciting tournaments in Europe.

Turkish Airlines Open 2014, which will be held at the Maxx Royal Montgomerie course between Nov. 13-16, will bring together 78 professional golfers who will vie for prize money, totaling $7 million.

The star-studded lineup for the event includes U.S. Open winner Martin Kaymer, former World number one Lee Westwood, 2013 FedEx Cup and Race to Dubai winner Henrik Stenson,  Victor Dubuisson, last year’s winner in Belek, and world number four Sergio Garcia.

The Spaniard missed last year’s inaugural event, but is driven this time by the tournament’s reputation and his own personal desire to make a late-season push for glory in the Race To Dubai.

“I heard so many positive things about the Turkish Airlines Open that I decided to check it out for myself,” said Garcia ahead of the tournament.

“It has already made a big impact on the European Tour and is in such a key position for the Race To Dubai, it’s established itself as one of the most important tournaments of the season.  I’m really looking forward to competing there, as well as meeting up with many of my Ryder Cup colleagues.”

Garcia was an integral part of Captain Paul McGinley’s side that won the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles last month and will be among the favorites to topple Frenchman Victor Duboisson, who claimed his first Tour success in Turkey last year, which became his own springboard towards worldwide recognition.

“It’s an extremely strong field, so it’s going to be a very interesting week at what I’m told is an excellent location,” added Garcia. “It should set up a great finale to the season.”

Defending champion Dubuisson is determined to hang on to the crown that took him from relatively unknown to being a global star last year.

“I am really looking forward to returning to Turkey,” said Dubuisson, who beat Tiger Woods and Justin Rose, among others, coming down the stretch. “The Turkish Airlines Open is where it all started for me and I’m delighted to be able to return to Antalya and not only re-live those wonderful memories, but hopefully build some more” he added.

The 2013 tournament was hailed as the best, first event on the European Tour by Chief Executive George O’Grady and the second edition of the 78-man field event promises to be even bigger and better.

“Turkish Airlines was proud and honored to deliver the greatest festival of golf ever seen in Turkey last year and we sure are in for an equally exciting week this time,” said Ahmet Olmuştur, the airline’s Chief Marketing Officer. “The tournament received a terrific amount of global publicity and we are aiming to make the second edition even more memorable. Having so many of the world’s best golfers already committed is a great start,” he added.

“It is a proud moment for our country when so many of the world’s best players elect to visit it,” added Ahmet Ağaoğlu, the president of the Turkish Golf Federation. “Last year’s tournament will take some beating for drama and excitement, but we are sure there will be plenty more this time. We hope everybody enjoys themselves, is enthralled by both the golfing and Antalya, and leaves with the feeling that they want to return.”

The Turkish Airlines Open presented by the Ministry of Youth and Sports will take place over the challenging Montgomerie Maxx Royal course crafted by eight-time European Tour winner and Ryder Cup legend, Colin Montgomerie.

October/29/2014

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