Rising star Shubhankar Sharma of India will resume his chase for the coveted Asian Tour Order of Merit crown when he tees off for the USD 850,000 Mercuries Taiwan Masters here Thursday. Sharma, who will be receiving the prestigious Arjuna Award from the President of India in Delhi, is determined to put up a fine performance this week to extend his lead on the Asian Tour Habitat for Humanity Standings.
The 22-year-old Sharma will spearhead the elite 123-man field from 23 countries at the fabled Taiwan Golf and Country Club, the traditional home of the Mercuries Taiwan Masters which is celebrating its centennial year in 2018 as the oldest club in the country. South African Justin Harding, highest-ranked player in 97th place on the Official World Golf Ranking (OWGR), will also feature in the storied event alongside Korea’s Sanghyun Park and Scott Vincent of Zimbabwe, all placed inside the top-10 on the Habitat for Humanity Standings.
The Mercuries Taiwan Masters, which is celebrating its 32nd edition this week, is the longest-running full-field event on the Asian Tour. Inaugurated in 1987, the event has been held annually on the region’s premier Tour since 2004. Players will be vying to boost their Merit rankings as the top 10 and top four players (not otherwise exempt) on the Habitat for Humanity standings will qualify for the USD 7 million CIMB Classic and USD 10 million WGC-HSBC Champions staged in Malaysia and China respectively.
The Mercuries Taiwan Masters will be the penultimate event for players to try and boost their rankings on the Habitat for Humanity Standings before the cut-off date on October 7.