The Royal Trophy, the brainchild of the great Seve Ballesteros, arrives in Hua Hin Thailand this month, with a steela cast of top golfers from Europe and Asia.
The European team’s captain is none other than the 2010 triumphant Ryder captain, Colin Montgomerie, and when he calls the players can’t wait to play for Europe.
Peter Hanson, Thomas Bjorn, Johan Edfors, Matteo Manassero, Henrik Stenson, Pablo Martin and Rhys Davies make up Monty’s team.
Rhys Davies emphasised his eagerness to enjoy a taste of the action with Europe as he spearheaded the powerful force descending on the Royal Trophy.
The golfer hailed as the best putter in the world after just one season on the European Tour was the first player from either team to turn up at the stunning Black Mountain Golf Club in Hua Hin, Thailand.
And he was quickly experiencing the speed of the greens as he waited for Colin Montgomerie and the rest of his European team-mates to join him for the eagerly-awaited fifth edition of the Royal Trophy.
Davies commented: “I guess being here this early is a sign of how excited – and honoured – I feel to be part of such a prestigious competition.
“After witnessing Europe’s fantastic Ryder Cup win at such close quarters in October – as part of Colin’s support team – I was even more determined to actually play for a European team as quickly as possible.
“I never dreamed my chance would come this quickly, but having been selected I was determined to leave nothing to chance in terms of preparation, which is why I flew in to Thailand early on Sunday.’
The Asian team are perhaps as good as the US Ryder Cup team, with many of their team taking some big trophies in 2010.
Their team captain is Naomichi ‘Joe’ Ozaki from Japan and his players include veteran Thongchai Jaidee Thailand’s super star, Japanese wonder kid Ryo Isikawa, Asian Tour Number one Noh Seung–yul, Kim Kyung-tae, Yuta Ikeda, Shunsuke Sonada, Liang Wen-Chung and Jeev Milka Singh.
Whatever the outcome, the billions of TV fans around the World and the thousands of spectators at Thailand’s Black Mountain Golf Course will be in for a treat.