The Asian Tour will return to Thailand for the 2020 Qualifying School where aspiring golf professionals from across the globe go in search of an Asian Tour card over a two-month period starting from January next year.
The Qualifying School, which comprises of two stages – the First Qualifying Stage and the Final Qualifying Stage – will be held at the Lake View Resort & Golf Club (Course A, B, C and D) in Hua Hin, Thailand.
The First Qualifying Stage will be played over two different weeks. Players have the option of entering the First Qualifying Stage on the week commencing January 8, or the week commencing February 12.
The top-placed players from the First Qualifying Stage will progress to the Final Qualifying Stage, which will be played over five rounds from February 19 to 23. The top 70 players (and ties) after 72 holes will play in the pivotal final round, which will be held on February 23.
At the conclusion of 90 holes, the top 35 (and ties) will be ranked accordingly for the 2020 season. Players who compete in the 2020 Qualifying School will also be eligible to play on the Asian Development Tour (ADT), which is the secondary circuit of the Asian Tour.
Asian Tour Commissioner and Chief Executive Officer Cho Minn Thant is confident the 2020 Qualifying School will be another success as hopefuls aim to emulate the success of Thai duo Sadom Kaewkanjana and Kosuke Hamamoto on Tour this season.
Sadom became the fastest Qualifying School graduate to win on Tour when he won on his first professional start on Tour at the Bangabandhu Cup Golf Open earlier in April. Kosuke, on the other hand, retained his card for the 2020 season after just five starts this season.
“The competition is going to be intense but the rewards will be massive for successful entrants.” – Cho Minn Thant
“The Asian Tour has unearthed many promising talents through the Qualifying School over the years. Our recent champion Yikeun Chang of Korea is also one of them. He had topped the class in 2016 prior to his breakthrough in Chinese Taipei last month.”
"Qualifying School is a gruelling process but it gives players, both professionals and amateurs, the opportunity to earn their place on the Asian Tour in 2020. The competition is going to be intense but the rewards will be massive for successful entrants," Cho said.
Last year, Thailand’s Naras Luangphetcharaporn recorded the first-ever 59 on the Asian Tour en route to securing his Tour card for the 2019 season. The 26-year-old ended his campaign in tied-21st place and was one of the 41 players, who finished inside top 35 and ties, to earn playing rights on the Asian Tour this season.
2018 Qualifying School graduate Viraj Madappa became the youngest Indian winner on Tour when he won the TAKE Solutions Masters on home soil in his rookie season last year, at the age of 20.
American Kurt Kitayama, who also came through the 2018 Qualifying School, rose through the ranks after breaking through in Mauritius last December. The talented 26-year-old would go on to secure his maiden win on the European Tour earlier in March.
Other successful graduates include Australian Zach Murray, who won the 2019 New Zealand Open in what was his third start on Tour this season, as well as John Catlin of the United States, who marked his name in the Asian Tour history books by becoming the 10th golfer in Tour history to win three times in a single season last year.