Chinese number one Liang Wenchong teed off the unique seven-day, seven-city Shui On Land China Golf Challenge in Shanghai yesterday.
Englishman Ian Poulter led the 18-hole tournament at one-under after the first day - two holes - putting him one shot ahead of Liang. Poulter's compatriot and world number two Lee Westwood was one-over, while world number three Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland was four-over after finding water on both holes at the Tomson Golf Club in Pudong New Area.
A general view of the Tomson Golf Club in Shanghai, China.
Liang, 33, believes the week-long tournament will show China and its young but growing golf industry in a fresh new light. "I am really excited because it's a completely new format, not a normal tournament. In China, many people only watch tournaments, but the Shui On Land China Golf Challenge will show people the lifestyle of golfers and showcase China's many modern cities. It will help the audience get close to the players and increase their interest."
This morning, the players fly on Bombardier jets to Zhengzhou, capital of Henan Province, where they will play the third and fourth holes of the tournament at Jinsha Lake Golf Club.
The foursome will then compete at two golf clubs in Beijing tomorrow before stops in Dalian, Chongqing, Dongguan and Macau.