Global banking giant HSBC’s Premier members will tee off in the second annual SriLankan Strokes 2007, slated for February 22 to the 24 in the picturesque hill station of Nuwara Eliya.
HSBC’s golf playing Premier members from Dubai, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and India are expected to take part at the second annual SriLankan Strokes following a successful inaugural tournament in 2006.
“We had strong competition in the inaugural, with some very good golfers from the region testing their skills in the challenging NEGC course,” SriLankan Airlines Head of Corporate Communications, Chandana de Silva said.
“This year too the line-up promises to be very challenging and we are sure to have a tough battle for the top honours.”
Golfers with best nett handicap score over one Stableford round will win a trophy and a chance to fly SriLankan Airlines in business class to selected destinations, while other category winners will win return air tickets courtesy of the airline.
Chief Executive Officer, HSBC Sri Lanka and Maldives, David Griffiths said “This tournament pairs well with our HSBC Premier member service and we are happy to be part of the tournament for a second year.”
“This year, in addition to the HSBC Premier trophy, the winner will get the opportunity to witness the HSBC Champions Tournament, which will be played in Shanghai, China in November 2007,”Griffiths added.
“Golf is a game enjoyed the world over and we consider it a privilege to be associated with SriLankan Airlines in this venture. This tournament is open to HSBC Premier customers in Sri Lanka and abroad and we hope it will provide a boost to tourism in Sri Lanka.”
HSBC Premier members playing in the Sri Lankan Strokes 2007 tournament will also enjoy exclusive tour packages from SriLankan Airlines, which includes airfare, airport transfers, accommodation at one of the partner hotels of the SriLankan strokes tournament, shuttle service to and from the golf course, caddy and green fees and invitation to the gala awards dinner on the final day of the tournament.
Non-golf playing friends and family can also enjoy the charm of Nuwara Eliya or “Little England” as it is also known, with its colonial style buildings and mild weather.
A series of day trips to nearby tea estates, water falls and other picture postcard attractions including the Horton Plains are available or travelling a little further, visitors can take in the majestic hill capital of Kandy and even visit an elephant orphanage.
Players and visitors will stay in luxury at the four official hotels – The Grand Hotel, St. Andrews, The Galway Forest Lodge and the Tea Factory.
All ground arrangements for participants and their companions will be taken care of by Hemtours, the Official Ground Handling Agent.
SriLankan Airlines operates its AirTaxi service to 14 locations within the island, including flights to the vicinity of the Victoria and Nuwara Eliya Golf clubs, cutting travelling time for golfers by about six hours.
In addition to enjoying a bird’s eye view of the island’s jungles, waterfalls, tea estates and hilly terrain aboard the AirTaxi, passengers also have the comfort of reaching their destination within 40 minutes and without the long journey on a winding mountain road.
SriLankan Airlines has pioneered international golfing tournaments in Sri Lanka, with four of the island’s leading tournaments sponsored by the airline.
The flagship SriLankan Golf Classic is on its twelfth successive year, with players from the US to China teeing off over four days in Sri Lanka’s hill capital – Kandy.
SriLankan Airlines, which now flies to 50 destinations in 28 countries actively promotes Sri Lanka as an ideal location for adventure sports and sports tourism, supporting a range of international sporting events including marathons, surfing, scuba diving, golf, rugby, wildlife photography and exploring and mountaineering.
About Nuwara Eliya and the Course
The town of Nuwara Eliya lies in the central hills of Sri Lanka, 6200 feet above sea level.
The 160 km drive from Colombo is one of the most scenic in the island with wonderful views and a visual introduction to the tea country of Sri Lanka.
The jewel in the crown of Nuwara Eliya is the 117 year old course in the heart of the town. Built in 1889 this club has been hosting the Sri Lankan Strokes and other premier tournaments dating back to 1891. The 5550 meter, 18-hole, par 70 course starts from one corner of the town and is nestled into the valley, between the town and the surrounding forested hills.
When approaching via Kandy, the 6th green is one of the first views the visitor has of Nuwara Eliya; in fact most of the course lies in the heart of the town, but is shielded from disturbance by a thick belt of foliage. The course has been hailed as one of the most naturally scenic in the world.