WHILE the national golf association have remained mum on the subject of the Malaysian Open yet again talk within the industry has spawned debate that it might be soon making a welcome return.
Efforts to get comment from the Malaysian Golf Association (MGA) proved fruitless with a “no comment” all that was offered.
But despite this, some well-placed persons are of the opinion that we might yet have the national open resurface after an absence of four years as early as September.
Needless to say that if this were the case, the resurrection of an event that was once one of the most popular in the region and which featured prominently on the European Tour’s regular schedule for more than a decade and a half, would bring not only relief but also great cheer for more than just a few folks.
TeeUp, at the end of last year, suggested that the MGA, the custodians of the national open tournament, would soon secure the sponsorship needed for the event and make an announcement on its return.
However, there was no light shed on the matter and instead the MGA have kept to their tune that they were still seeking a principal sponsor.
Much of the recent discussion centers on the possibility of a ‘big’ bank with ties to golf being the most likely candidate to come to the rescue of the national Open. But again, there has been nothing concrete forthcoming.
But if there was some encouragement to believe that maybe there was some substance to the notion that the Malaysian Open was about emerge over the horizon, then it is maybe because the MGA are said to have been in negotiations with the Asian Tour.
A source from within the Tour confirmed that they had shared “a few possible dates this season” with the MGA with a view to hosting the national Open.
Further still, one of the country’s leading golf clubs has said privately that they had entertained enquiries about the possibility of hosting the event.
“It would be premature on our part to say anything about this right now,” said as senior member of the club. “But we would be happy to serve a sthe venue of the Malaysian Open, whether it be this year or next year.”
The Malaysian Open has not been held since 2015 when Maybank sponsored it for the last time, prior to going on their own with a first quarter date.
The Malaysian financial institution has since established the US$3mil Maybank Championship, an event co-sanctioned by the Asian Tour and European Tour.
It has grown to become one of the best golf events in the region.
According to one source, who chose to remain anonymous, the Malaysian Open would most likely carry prize money of US$1mil and feature only on the Asian Tour.