European Icons Looking to Start Strong at 2018 Abu Dhabi Golf Championship

European Icons Looking to Start Strong at 2018 Abu Dhabi Golf Championship
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Published January 1st, 2018 - 00:04 GMT via SyndiGate.info

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The 13th edition of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by Emirates Global Aluminium logo
The 13th edition of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by Emirates Global Aluminium logo

The 13th edition of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by Emirates Global Aluminium, EGA, has been further boosted following the news that household names Graeme McDowell, Ian Poulter and Thomas Bjorn will all be returning to the Championship fray in 2018.

These European golfing heavyweights join the headlining pack of 2017 European Tour prize money winner and defending Champion, Tommy Fleetwood, World Number One, Dustin Johnson, four-time Major winner, Rory McIlroy and 2016 Open Champion and Olympic Silver Medallist, Henrik Stenson. Also, American Ryder Cup star and Olympic Bronze Medallist, Matt Kuchar, and two-time championship winner Paul Casey also join the field.

With even more outstanding players to be announced, the roster for Abu Dhabi in 2018 underlines the championship's reputation for delivering a world-class field year on year. Over the four-day championship, 126 players will compete for a total prize purse of $3,000,000 – an increase of $300,000 from previous years.

Despite a quiet 2017, the well-decorated Graeme McDowell is raring to get things going in 2018, recently announcing that he has put together a five-year plan to revive his game.

McDowell said, "After a very positive end to my 2017 season and some hard work ahead over the Christmas break, I'm looking forward to starting my 2018 season again in Abu Dhabi. The Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship always provides wonderful playing conditions – it's a great way to kick off the year."

Poulter, another seasoned Abu Dhabi Golf Club visitor, said, "Everybody knows 2018 is going to be massive," expressed Poulter.

"I want to get out of the block quickly and set the tone for my season. My main goal for the year is obviously to make the Ryder Cup team and I'm going to be working extremely hard to reach that goal – and it all starts in Abu Dhabi."

Bjorn said, "I can't wait to get the year started. It's going to be a massive year, so how we start at the championship in Abu Dhabi could help set the tone for the remainder of 2018. I'll not only be working on my own game, but I'll be keenly watching how our European players get on against what is, once again, a world class field."

The 2018 Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by EGA will run from 18th to 21st January with Abu Dhabi Sports Council looking to top this year's turnout of over 69,000 spectators.

The 2017 tournament grew the championship's social media following by over 65% and the HD TV coverage, with a potential reach of almost half a billion viewers, allowed a global audience to watch the world's best vie for the coveted Falcon Trophy and a share in the US $3 million prize purse.

© Copyright 2017 Emirates News Agency (WAM)

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