The stage is set for the 2014 World Amateur Team Championships

The World Amateur Team Championships get underway in Japan next week with many of the world’s leading men’s and women’s amateur golfers gathering for the international team competition.

The historic championships begin with the Espirito Santo Trophy women’s event from 3-6 September at Karuizawa’s Oshitate and Iriyama courses and continues with the Eisenhower Trophy men’s event from 10-13 September. The format for both events will be 72-holes of stroke play.  Each country will be represented by two or three players with the two lowest scores from each round counting toward the four-day total.

At the 2012 event in Turkey, a record 72 men’s and 53 women’s teams took part in the Championship which is run by the International Golf Federation.

The Republic of Korea will be looking for their third consecutive victory in this year’s Espirito Santo Trophy. In 2012, the trio of Kyu-Jung Baek, Hyo-Joo Kim and Min-Sun Kim shot a 13-under-par total of 563 for a three shot victory over Germany at Gloria Golf Club.  It followed their convincing victory in 2010 when they compiled a record-breaking 30-under-par total of 546 to finish 17 shots ahead of the USA.

Korea could become the first team to record three straight victories since the United States in 1984. American teams dominated the competition, which was first played in 1964, in its first three decades, winning 13 titles up to 1998, but more recently teams from Sweden, South Africa, Spain, Thailand, Australia and Italy have won the event or finished as runners-up.

Players of the calibre of Annika Sorenstam, Lorena Ochoa, Nancy Lopez, Karrie Webb, Suzann Pettersen and Paula Creamer have represented their countries in the Espirito Santo Trophy.

In the Eisenhower Trophy, the USA will be bidding to take home the silverware for the 15th time. In 2012, Chris Williams, the number one ranked player in the World Amateur Golf Ranking™ at the time, teamed up with 2012 US Amateur champion Steven Fox and Justin Thomas to shoot a 24-under-par total of 404 to clinch a five shot victory over Mexico.

A number of great players have featured in the event, first played in 1958, including Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Colin Montgomerie, Nick Price, David Duval, Martin Kaymer and Rory McIlroy, along with Jack Nicklaus, who holds the 72-hole individual scoring record of 269.

Karuizawa, which is 150 km north of Tokyo, will provide a unique setting for the championship, as the only place in the world to have hosted both summer and winter Olympic events.

For the draw for the 2014 World Amateur Team Championships please click here.