Asian Tour Appalled at European Tours Intrusion


NEW DELHI -- The Asian Tour is irate over the European Tour's plan to stage a tournament for the first time in India, saying it was 'clearly unethical' to host the $2.5 million Indian Masters without being jointly sanctioned by the Asian Tour.
Both golf organizations are part of the International Federation of PGA TOURS, and previous tournaments in Asian countries have been co-sanctioned by the European and Asian tours.
'The Asian Tour is appalled with the European Tour's plans to stage a tournament in India without the sanction of the Asian Tour,' chairman Kyi Hla Han said. 'This move is clearly unethical and against the protocol that exists within the framework' of the federation.
The criticism comes one month after European Tour chief George O'Grady said he was finishing plans to join forces with all tours outside the United States to come up with an attractive alternative to the PGA TOUR.
The European Tour on Monday announced the Indian Masters to be held in February, and that it would work with the Indian Golf Union, which oversees amateur golf in the country.
Some Indian golfers and one member of the Professional Golf Tour of India said they were left in the dark.
'There's a protocol to keep the local professional golfers' association in the loop,' said Jyoti Randhawa. 'We feel they should have gone through us, we have a players' body which will soon meet to discuss this development.'
Han said the European Tour's decision was 'invasive,' and he was backed by Ajay Gupta, head of the PGTI.
'You don't go to another territory uninvited,' Gupta said.
He said a European Tour event would be a big boost for India, but his first priority was to work with the Asian Tour.
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