Rory McIlroy and Francesco Molinari have confirmed their places in the WGC-HSBC Champions at Sheshan International Golf Club, Shanghai from 25-28 October 2018.
McIlroy, a four-time Major winner, and the Open champion will tee up alongside American stars Dustin Johnson, Brooks Koepka and Patrick Reed in what is becoming a stellar field.
Newly crowned World No 1 and defending champion Justin Rose will also be joined by local hero Li Haotong, as the world’s best compete for an increased prize fund of $10-million.
Johnson and Molinari are both former winners of the WGC-HSBC Champions in 2013 and 2010 respectively and Johnson and Koepka notably finished tied second behind Rose at last year’s tournament.
‘Playing in Shanghai is very important to me,’ said Molinari.
‘It was such a huge moment in my career when I won there in 2010. It gave me the confidence to know that I can deliver on the big occasions against the world’s best fields when I get myself in contention. It is amazing to be returning to Sheshan, not only as a past champion which always feels good, but also as the reigning Open Champion.’
Johnson is ready to return to a venue that holds good memories.
‘I really enjoy playing in front of the Chinese crowds, as you can sense their enthusiasm for the tournament. Having won there a few years ago, it always feels special to return. I was very close to winning there again last year, so it would be great to head into the Christmas break after winning another World Golf Championship title against such an awesome field,’ he said.
Joining Johnson is 2018 double Major winner Koepka.
‘This will be my third time playing in the WGC-HSBC Champions and I am definitely hoping I can improve on last year’s second-place finish. It has been an amazing couple of months but hopefully I am not done yet and can keep this momentum going to win my first World Golf Championships title in Shanghai,’ said Koepka.
Completing the latest field announcement is 2018 Masters champion Reed who admits the lure of playing against the strong field is one of the reasons for his confirmation.
‘I always feel so lucky that we are able to travel the world and compete at some of the most amazing courses and cities in the world. I look forward to competing against the best players in the world in Shanghai. The Sheshan International Golf Club always offers a good test and I hope to play solid and have a chance to win a second World Golf Championship of my career,’ said Reed.