Turkish Open put in Tour schedule

Turkish Open put in Tour schedule

Turkish Open put in Tour schedule

Justin Rose celebrates after winning the Turkish Airlines World Golf Final in Belek in early October. DHA photo

Turkey will host a leg of the European Tour next year, according to the 2013 schedule, which was announced by the organization yesterday.

Facing ongoing economic challenges at home, the European Tour announced a 45-tournanament schedule for 2013 that is increasingly global with new tournaments in Turkey, Russia and South Africa.

The $7 million Turkish Open, scheduled to be held next year through Nov. 7 and Nov. 10 at the Montgomerie Maxx Royal course in Belek, will be the last event of the Tour before golfers move to Dubai for the World Tour Championship.

“To have our members finishing The European Tour season at tournaments of genuine quality such as the BMW Masters, the WGC-HSBC Champions, the Turkish Open and the DP World Tour Championship is exciting,” said George O’Grady, chief executive of The European Tour.

For the first time, there will be six tournaments in South Africa, including the season-opening Nelson Mandela Championship next month. But there will be six fewer tournaments in Spain than two years ago and the schedule will not feature the Czech Open. The tour is also dropping the Singapore Open and the Hong Kong Open from the 2013 program.

“We are of course slightly disappointed that we have lost events in the eurozone countries,” O’Grady said of the schedule, which is one event down from the 46 in 2012. “The depth of the crisis is very, very strong. And I think we know if accountants are put in charge of the issue, the big thing is to cut cost whereas the strength of the European Tour is you market your way out of problems with tremendous value for your money.”