2008 Winning Nationality?
And the winning nationality of the BMW Asian Open 2008 isâ€¦
With the BMW Asian Open 2008 on Chinese soil for the fifth consecutive year, Chinese locals are once again hoping to claim a home victory. Indeed, the growing popularity of Chinese golf has increased the number of Chinese players participating in the tournament. But does the number of players representing a country increase the odds of it being the nationality to take the title? Not according to the statistics of the BMW Asian Open 2007.
Austria: 1 in top 50, 1 in top 10
Despite the lack of Austrian players, an Austrian winner for this yearâ€™s BMW Asian Open is quite possible if Markus Brier retains the form that won him the Volvo China Open, the KLM Open, and the Telecom Italia titles last year. Brier was the only Austrian in the top 50 of the BMW Asian Open 2007, ending the tournament in fifth position.
France: 4 in top 50, 1 in top 10
The defending champion, Raphael Jacquelin, was one of 4 French golfers in the top 50 and the only Frenchman in the top 10. He led every round of the BMW Asian Open 2007 and was a worthy winner. Earlier this year, Jacquelin tied for fourth position in the Indian Masters so maybe he has some work ahead of him if he wants to defend his BMW Asian Open 2007 title.
Australia: 10 in top 50, 2 in top 10
Australia, unlike Austria and France, were rather well represented with 10 golfers finishing in the top 50 in last yearâ€™s BMW Asian Open. However, only 2 Australian players, Scott Hend and Kane Webber, finished in the top 10. Hend, who has returned to form after a serious hand injury, has been nipping at the heels of the winners of last yearâ€™s BMW Asian Open and the Volvo China Open. Perhaps this is his year to take the title.
South Africa: 6 in top 50, 3 in top 10
Of the 6 South African golfers completing in the top 50 of BMW Asian Open 2007, Ernie Els, Richard Sterne, and Andrew Mclardy completed the tournament in the top ten. South Africa seems to be the case of quantity increasing the odds of a producing a top 10 player. Still, it didnâ€™t guarantee a win.
China: 1 in top 50, 0 in top 10
This year, the eyes of the Chinese public will undoubtedly be on Wen-chong Liang, the wonderboy of Chinese golf. Liang was the only Chinese representative in the top 50 of the BMW Asian Open 2007, finishing the tournament in 37th position. Heâ€™s started 2008 in good form with a 7th position in the Indonesian Open so his supporters have every reason to believe that he can claim a home victory.
So where does that leave China for the BMW Asian Open 2008? With a stellar line-up of world class golfers competing against each other, the winning nationality, at this stage, is still anyoneâ€™s guess.
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