“With a small field like we have here, and I think I may get in trouble for saying this, but I’m kind of glad it’s not sanctioned by the European or PGA tours,” said Daly, who opened with 3-under 69.
There are 30 players in the field, including 14 of the top 50 in the world rankings.
The China Golf Association teamed with the mega-agency to create, promote and put on the tournament. It is scheduled to be held through 2015 at the Nicklaus-designed Shanghai track and, presently, without any major tour to sanction it. There is thought that the European Tour could sanction the tournament as soon as next season.
Of course, the players don’t just enjoy the event because of the location. There is a $5 million purse which promises $2 million to the winner – the richest single tournament purse in the game. Players will earn a minimum of $25,000 in addition to appearance fees for playing.