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Written By: Anjali Mishra
The Asian Tour confirmed, they have entered a strategic partnership with the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Tour which will help to facilitate the formation of one of the most comprehensive and innovative development tours in the modern game.
The Asian Tour's popular tier-two circuit, the Asian Development Tour (ADT), will align with the MENA Tour, with the ultimate goal of merging in 2023, based on a shared desire to consolidate their respective platforms.
Next year will be a transitional year, with the goal of hosting a number of ADT and MENA Tour co-sanctioned tournaments before the end of Q2, giving both sets of Members equal playing opportunities.
ADT MENA Tour in partnership with Asian Tour
The ADT and MENA Tours will then combine in 2023 to establish a single, formidable platform from which players can go to the main Tour. The Asian Tour Qualifying School will provide competitors with admission to the new development tour.
“We want to create an amplified pan-Asian development pathway by 2023 feeding directly into the Asian Tour,” said Cho Minn Thant, Commissioner & CEO, Asian Tour.
“The Asian Development Tour has always been an intrinsic part of our ecosystem and this new partnership with our friends at the MENA Tour is a forward-thinking statement of intent to build a combined property for the betterment of professional golf across the length and breadth of our region.”
Earlier in the year both Tours announced plans to increase dialogue on ways of working together but as tournament golf in the region has slowly started to return, they felt the time was right to accelerate their co-operative plans.
“This is the most significant development for the MENA Tour since its inception in 2011,” said David Spencer, Commissioner, MENA Tour.
“As the only Official World Golf Ranking Tour based in the Middle East our goal has always been to encourage, identify and nurture talent from all corners of the world to experience golf in the region which we are so proud of. We have worked closely with the Asian Tour, Cho Minn Thant and his team to create an alliance that underpins a unique and strong pathway for our members. We are intensely proud of our new alliance with the Asian Tour, and I look forward to seeing it flourish over the coming years.”
In 2022, the Asian Development Tour plans to have 10-12 events, with the MENA Tour hosting a significant proportion of them. Dialogue and strategic planning will now proceed at a rapid speed with the goal of optimising chances for all players and, where possible, reducing travel between events to make it more cost effective and safer for competitors.
Picture from MENA Tour
Last month, the Asian Tour relaunched with back-to-back events in Phuket, with MENA Tour members receiving invitations to the Blue Canyon Phuket Championship and Laguna Phuket Championship. Members of the MENA Tour have been extended further invites to next month's The Singapore International, ‒ the penultimate event of the 2020-21 season.
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