Henrik Stenson says continued civil protests will not overshadow Hong Kong Open
"We have a Tour and they always put the safety of players and fans first"
By Jonathan Nagioff
Last Updated: 05/11/19 6:04pm
Henrik Stenson says he has no concerns over competing in this month's Hong Kong Open, despite ongoing unrest in the region.
The European Tour event was in doubt following a series of violent protests in the city which began in June concerning an extradition bill which has since been withdrawn, although anti-government demonstrations continue.
As a result, the Hong Kong Tennis Open and the Hong Kong Open squash championships were both cancelled, yet Stenson remains confident the golf tournament will be unaffected.
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"I've never had any real concerns travelling anywhere in the world to play golf," said the Swede.
"We have a Tour and they always put the safety of players and fans first. It's something that I leave for the European Tour as part of the staging of this event and whenever there's the go-ahead to play a golf tournament I'm there ready to play.
"It's never been a concern of mine."
The 43-year-old finished 20th at the WGC HSBC Champions event in Shanghai last weekend, as Rory McIlroy claimed a thrilling victory ahead of Xander Schauffele.
The 2016 British Open winner says he was satisfied with his performance, but accepts he has room for improvement ahead of competing at the Nedbank Golf Challenge in South Africa and DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, which he has won twice.
"When you have got 78 of the top players in the world, it's never a bad week if you're finishing 20th even if we always aim to finish higher," Stenson said.
"We want higher and we have the capacity for a lot better than that. I feel it was a decent start on a four or five-week tour here and I've had a few days to practice before Sun City, which is my next tournament, and then the Dubai final and then we come to Hong Kong.
"We've got to work hard and do the right things and we'll get the return eventually.
"You never know when that's going to happen. It would be good if Hong Kong could be that week where we get rewarded for that hard work."
The Hong Kong Open will take place from November 28-December 1 at Fanling.
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