Bubba confirms Shenzhen entry

The left-hander’s last trip to China proved profitable in November last year, when he landed his maiden World Golf Championship title in thrilling style at the WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai.

Watson holed a bunker escape for an unlikely eagle at the 72nd hole to force a play-off with Tim Clark before nailing a 25-foot birdie putt to see off the South African at the first extra hole.

The world No 2 will tee up at the Neil Haworth-designed course at Genzon Golf Club four days after the first major of the season at Augusta National, and he is looking forward to returning to a happy hunting ground.

???This is a great opportunity for me to come back to China and play in a new event, which will make a big contribution to the development of golf in southern China,” said Watson, who has not played in a regular European Tour event since the 2011 Nordea Masters.

“I???m looking forward to coming to Shenzhen next month and playing my part in making some history.

???I finished third in the WGC-Cadillac Championship and my season???s got off to a pretty solid start overall, but I???m still looking for my first win in 2015. I???ll be doing my best to make it a hat-trick of wins at the Masters, but back-to-back victories in China would be pretty special too.???

Genzon Golf Club general manager, Fei Hai-long, said: ???At the launch of this tournament we made a promise that the first edition of the Shenzhen International would feature world-class players, and we have kept that promise.

“A two-time Masters champion and now ranked second in the world, Bubba Watson is not only a world-class golfer but someone whose appeal transcends the sport.

???With his impressive driving distances, extraordinary charisma and legions of fans around the world, Bubba???s participation in the tournament sends a very strong message to the international golfing community about just how serious we are about establishing the Shenzhen International as one of the region???s leading elite golf tournaments.

“Additionally, his presence at the Shenzhen International will enable golf fans in Shenzhen, Guangdong and throughout China to witness his remarkable skills first hand, so we look forward to his arrival in Shenzhen.

???The Shenzhen International is a tournament named after its host city. One of our aims for this event is to promote the city and showcase both the growth of Shenzhen over the last 30 years and the role it plays as a window to the world in southern China.

“To have a star of Bubba Watson???s calibre coming to our tournament will undoubtedly echo throughout China???s golf industry, and draw attention to the city and its status as a world-class golf destination.?????

The tournament, which will be promoted by IMG, is the first of four events being held in China as part of the 2015 European Tour International Schedule.??