Perth will host the most lucrative golf tournament in Australia when it stages the inaugural $2 million Perth International Championship next year.
Backed by the Western Australian government under a three-year agreement, the tournament is to be co-sanctioned by the European and Australasian tours and played at Lake Karrinyup Country Club.
The event puts Perth back on the international golf map, following on from the Heineken Classic, Johnnie Walker Classic and Lexus Cup staged in recent years.
Owned and promoted by international sports management company IMG, the Perth International should draw a strong field of overseas stars to battle the Australians through its connection with the European tour.
PGA Tour of Australasia chief executive Brian Thorburn welcomed the event as another boost for Australian golf after a big season highlighted by the Presidents Cup.
“The PGA Tour of Australasia is delighted to add the Perth International Golf Championship to its 2012 schedule and look forward to welcoming the European Tour and its players back to Australia,” Thorburn said.
“Perth has a proud history of staging world-class golf tournaments and following on from one of Australia’s most successful golf seasons ever, we look forward to working with all parties to grow this prestigious tournament.”
European tour chief operating officer Keith Waters welcomed his tour’s return to Western Australia and the Asia-Pacific region.
“Returning to Australia, and the city of Perth in particular, will further enhance the global nature of the European Tour,” Waters said.