Choi, Yang to return to play in NZ Open

KJ Choi
KJ Choi
The two most successful golfers to come out of South Korea, KJ Choi and YE Yang, will line up at the New Zealand Open in Queenstown later this month.

Choi and Yang have both confirmed their entries for the Open from February 28 to March 3.

Choi is one of the top 25 players on the PGA Tour's all-time money list with earnings of over $NZ50million in prize money.

The South Korean has 20 professional victories worldwide to his credit, winning eight times on the PGA tour and winning the 2011 Players Championship.

Yang is the first Asian-born player to win a major, winning the PGA Championship in 2009 in a duel with Tiger Woods.

The 47-year-old proved he is far from a spent force in the game with an outstanding 2018 season on the Japan Golf Tour, including victory at The Crowns among seven top-13 finishes that enabled him to finish 12th overall on the Order of Merit.

The pair have a shared history in golf in New Zealand, both coming here as young professionals.

Yang returned to compete in the New Zealand Open in 2017 and Choi last year.

Both players are excited to return to the country and to have the opportunity to play with sponsors in Queenstown.

''I very much enjoyed playing in Queenstown last year but because I now know more about the courses I wanted to return and be even more competitive this time,'' Choi said.

He missed the cut by one shot last year.

Yang finished tied for 39th at the New Zealand Open last year.

The addition of Yang to the field now means that the 100th New Zealand Open will boast three former major winners, Yang lining up alongside former US Open champions Michael Campbell and Geoff Ogilvy.

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