Invitations to compete in the 2023 Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship were sent in August and 118 players to date have been confirmed for the Championship, which will be held October 26-29, 2023, at The Royal Melbourne Golf Club in Melbourne, Australia.
Created in 2009, the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship was established by the Asia-Pacific Golf Confederation (APGC), The R&A and the Masters Tournament to further develop amateur golf in the Asia-Pacific region. The champion will receive an invitation to compete in the 2024 Masters Tournament and The 152nd Open, while the runner(s)-up will gain a place in Final Qualifying for The Open.
Players from 41 APGC member organizations have accepted invitations with 118 players confirmed for the 120-player field. The field is highlighted by Japan’s Yuta Sugiura (No. 20 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking as of September 5), China’s Wenyi Ding (No. 22), New Zealand’s Kazuma Kobori (No. 30) and Thailand’s Ratchanon “TK” Chantananuwat (No. 34). Additionally, the 2022 runner-up, China’s Bo Jin (No. 118) will return.
“The Asia-Pacific Amateur has always been one of my favorite tournaments on the calendar,” said Jin, whose older brother, Cheng Jin, won the 2015 Championship. “It is definitely one of the best and highest level [amateur tournaments]. I have had many fond memories at the event, with last year being the closest to winning. That experience gave me a lot of confidence in my own game and helped me grow mentally and hopefully this year I can move one step further…a chance to play at the Masters and The Open would be the ideal ending to my college golf.”
Notable past competitors include 2021 Masters champion Hideki Matsuyama, a two-time winner of the Asia-Pacific Amateur, and 2022 Open champion Cameron Smith. Over the Championship’s 14-year history, the Championship has served as a springboard to some of the world’s top players, including Matsuyama, Smith, Cameron Davis, Ryan Fox, Lucas Herbert, Si Woo Kim, Satoshi Kodaira, Kyoung-Hoon Lee, Min Woo Lee and C.T. Pan. Collectively, alumni of the Asia-Pacific Amateur have gone on to win 24 tournaments on the PGA Tour to date and more than 120 across the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, Asian Tour and Japan Golf Tour.
As the host nation, Australia will lead the list of 41 countries represented with 10 players in this year’s field. Three Australians have previously won the Championship, including Harrison Crowe at last year’s Asia-Pacific Amateur.
“I marked it on the calendar pretty much when it got announced and became official at last year’s event,” said Australian Lukas Michel. “I’ve never played the Composite Course at Royal Melbourne, which is the best 18 holes in Australia, probably by a fair margin, so it was on the highest of lists of things to play.”
Founded in 1891, The Royal Melbourne Golf Club is one of Australia’s oldest golf Clubs. The Championship will be played over the Composite course which comprises twelve holes from the West and six holes from the East course. The West Course was designed by Dr. Alister MacKenzie, the same architect who shaped Augusta National Golf Club. Royal Melbourne has previously held 16 Men’s Australian Opens, two Women’s Australian Opens, three Presidents Cups and the Asia-Pacific Amateur in 2014, when Adelaide’s Antonio Murdaca became the first Australian to win the event.