European Tour launches new £4m event in China

The BMW Masters is to be staged from October 25-28 and represents the third European Tour event this year on mainland China.

The event joins last week's China Open in Tianjin on the calendar and will be played the week before the November 1-4 WGC-Champions in Shenzhen.

"I am already looking forward to teeing off at the tournament," said world number one Rory McIlroy, who won last year's Lake Malaren Shanghai Masters which is now being replaced by the new event.

"The tournament will be one of the very best events in the world. That obviously makes it all the more exciting to defend my title there," added the Northern Irishman in a statement.

The new competition brings the total number of European Tour events this year to 47.

After the four major championships, the WGC (World Golf Championships) tournaments and the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai, the BMW Masters will be the most lucrative event on the European circuit.

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