FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
February 25, 2019
ANNIKA Invitational at Mission Hills Returns to China
World’s Largest Golf Resort Welcomes Deepest Field to Date with Winner Receiving
Exemptions to EFG Hong Kong Ladies Open and CLPGA’s Zhangjiagang Shuangshan Challenge
(ORLANDO, Fla.) – The ANNIKA Foundation – golf Hall-of-Famer Annika Sorenstam’s charitable organization – will once again bring its ANNIKA Invitational at Mission Hills to the Annika Course at China’s Mission Hills Resort, February 27 to March 1.
More than 90 girls hailing from eight different countries and territories (Canada, China, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Japan, Macau, Singapore and the United States) will compete over 54 holes of stroke play. They will be broken into three age groups (8-9, 10-12, 13-18). The overall champion will receive invitations to compete in the EFG Hong Kong Ladies Open, May 10-12, 2019, and CLPGA’s Zhangjiagang Shuangshan Challenge, June 6-8, both professional events.
Top-three overall finishers will earn exemptions into the prestigious 2020 ANNIKA Invitational USA presented by Rolex at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Florida. World Amateur Golf and China Golf Association ranking points are also up for grabs.
“The ANNIKA Invitational is one of the highlights of our annual junior golf program at Mission Hills, which features more than 50 tournaments for tens of thousands of young Chinese golfers each year,” says Tenniel Chu, Group Vice-Chairman of Mission Hills. “We look forward to welcoming Annika back and continuing our mission together to grow girls’ golf in China and across the region.”
“We’re excited to return to Mission Hills and welcome our strongest field to date,” adds Annika, who designed the host Annika Course and will be onsite for the tournament. “The ANNIKA Foundation is proud of its partnership with Mission Hills and role in helping to launch China’s first all-girls international tournament back in 2011.”
Japan’s Nanako Inagaki will return to defend her title. She will once again be challenged by Chinese Taipei’s Yi Ting Chou, who will be playing in her fourth ANNIKA Invitational at Mission Hills and finished T-3 in 2018. Three Americans (Ella Peiwei Han, Obi Chan and Yiyun Zou) are also scheduled to compete.
Following the ANNIKA Foundation’s “More Than Golf” mantra, Annika will spend time with the players both on and off the course, sharing the knowledge and experiences that have made her incredibly successful in both the LPGA and post-LPGA phases of her life. Activities will include a clinic, tournament dinner and talent show.
Each year, the ANNIKA Foundation conducts five other major golf events for juniors: the ANNIKA Invitational USA presented by Rolex, ANNIKA Invitational Europe, ANNIKA Cup, ANNIKA Invitational Latin America and ANNIKA Invitational Australasia. They are complemented by the ANNIKA Intercollegiate presented by 3M and the ANNIKA Award presented by 3M, which is annually bestowed to the most outstanding female Division I golfer.
Since the inaugural Foundation tournament – the 2009 ANNIKA Invitational USA – 45 ANNIKA event alumnae have earned LPGA cards, with more than 600 playing golf at the collegiate level.
For more information, please visit www.annikafoundation.org.
About the ANNIKA Foundation
Annika created the ANNIKA Foundation to provide opportunities in women’s golf at the junior, collegiate and professional levels while teaching young people the importance of living a healthy, active lifestyle through fitness and nutrition. The Foundation has partnered with key organizations to promote healthy, active lifestyles for children, including SPARK, Florida Hospital for Children in support of its Healthy 100 Kids initiative and The First Tee in development of the Nine Healthy Habits curriculum for children.
It annually conducts six major golf events for aspiring junior girls: the ANNIKA Invitational USA presented by Rolex at the World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Florida; ANNIKA Invitational at Mission Hills in China; ANNIKA Invitational Europe and ANNIKA Cup in Sweden; and, in association with the R&A, the ANNIKA Invitational Latin America and ANNIKA Invitational Australasia. In 2013, the Foundation’s reach extended to the collegiate ranks with the ANNIKA Award presented by 3M (awarded to most outstanding female NCAA Division I golfer) and ANNIKA Intercollegiate presented by 3M (12 team, 54-hole event in Minnesota). SPARK grants to schools, financial support of Healthy 100 Kids, endowing an AJGA ACE Grant, and the “Share My Passion” Golf Clinics are other areas of emphasis.
About Mission Hills
The Mission Hills Group – owner and operator of world-class resorts in the heart of the Pearl River Delta and on the tropical island of Hainan – is a pioneer in China’s hospitality, sports and leisure industry.
The fully-integrated Mission Hills resorts sprawl over 40 square kilometres, including 22 championship golf courses, five-star hotels, award-winning spas and volcanic mineral springs, international convention centers, state-of-the-art golf academies, a 20-pitch soccer training base, Asia’s largest basketball school and Asia’s biggest tennis facility.
Other significant projects at Mission Hills include shopping and entertainment at Mission Hills Centreville, Bromsgrove School Mission Hills in collaboration with the 550-year-old British boarding school, co-operations with world-renowned hotel brands Hard Rock, Renaissance and Ritz-Carlton, Mission Hills Movie Town, China’s first Wet’n’Wild water park and ground-breaking partnerships with FC Barcelona, NBA and PGA of America.
For more information visit www.missionhillschina.com or follow Mission Hills China on social media.