Niall Horan backing new men's and women's tournament for Northern Ireland
By Keith Jackson
Last Updated: 13/05/19 4:55pm
Niall Horan's golf management team have announced an innovative new mixed tournament will be sanctioned by the European Challenge Tour in August.
The ISPS HANDA World Invitational Men | Women, presented by Modest! Golf Management will be held at the Galgorm Spa & Golf Resort and the Massereene Golf Club in Ballymena, and will replace the Northern Ireland Open on the Challenge Tour schedule.
The men's and women's competitions will split the $500,000 prize fund equally, and both fields will be cut after the second and third rounds, with the final 36 holes being played at Galgorm Castle.
Tournament organisers also confirmed they will invite stars from the LPGA Tour, Ladies European Tour and their counterparts in Asia and Australia for the women's event.
Horan, whose Modest! Golf stable includes the recent Kenya Open champion, Guido Migliozzi, said: "We got into golf with the aim to help and develop the next generation of players. By supporting a tournament like this exciting new World Invitational we are to bring that goal to fruition.
"Myself and the entire Modest! team are delighted to be partnering with ISPS HANDA, a wonderful organisation who are synonymous with promoting the game around the world and helping to bring people together through sport.
"ISPS HANDA reach out to all areas of society as evidenced through their drive and support for blind golfers and golfers with a disability. In this part of the world we are aware more than most about the importance of creating a lasting legacy. By working alongside ISPS HANDA we can help deliver something very special through this exciting new tournament.
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The European Tour's chief executive officer, Keith Pelley, added: "As golf's global tour, our core values are innovation and inclusivity and this new tournament fits perfectly into both of those genres. We are so pleased to have another innovative format on the Challenge Tour's schedule following the success of the Jordan Mixed Open earlier this year.
"It's fantastic to see these pioneering events becoming more common on the global golfing calendar and we hope they continue to grow with the support of sponsors and broadcasters.
"We have seen the success of the ISPS Handa Vic Open in Australia - which was won by Challenge Tour graduate David Law - and it is really exciting to have a tournament of the same format taking place in Northern Ireland this year.
"We must thank Dr Handa, Niall Horan and Gary Henry for their hard work in organising this tournament and I am excited to see the action unfold at Galgorm in August."
Discounted advance ticket purchases can be made at worldinvitational.golf where spectators can take advantage of the "early bird offers" to enjoy this showpiece sporting event.