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Three receive Masters invitations

China's Liang Wenchong, Prayad Marksaeng of Thailand and India's Jeev Milkha Singh have been given special invitations to play at this year's Masters in Augusta, Georgia.

"These three individuals are successful, accomplished and talented golfers deserving of a Masters invitation," Augusta National Golf Club chairman Billy Payne said in a statement on Monday.

"They are outstanding representatives of their respective countries. This is also another component in our objective of growing the game of golf world wide utilising the Masters brand.

"We think the interest in golf in each country will heighten when these players compete in the Masters."

Liang, who last month became the first Chinese player to win Asia's order of merit, and Prayad will be making their debuts in the opening major of the season.

Singh, the 2006 Asian number one, played at Augusta National for the first time last year, tying for 37th.

Eighty-seven players have been invited to compete in the 72nd Masters, Payne said.

Further spots are still available for winners of PGA Tour events over the next two months and via the top 50 in the world rankings the week before the tournament.

The 2008 Masters will be played from April 10-13 when American Zach Johnson will defend the title he won this year by two shots from Tiger Woods.


January 22, 2008

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