Golfers from around the globe are slated to arrive in Cambodia with their golf clubs to take part in the 6th FCC Nations Cup.
The two-day friendly golf tournament that happens twice a year for golfers of varying abilities is being held in Siem Reap on May 5-6.
"We usually end up having about 10 countries represented," says Ben Jancloes, Director of Operations for FCC Hotels Indochina.
Countries being represented in the tournament include Thailand, Laos, Australia, the US, the UK, France, Canada, New Zealand and the winners of the last FCC Nations Cup, Malaysia.
While the event is really geared toward having fun, a certain amount of national pride is involved – especially for the winning country.
"It's a chance to have bragging rights for six months," says Louis Coyle, a Phnom Penh-based Australian national who has been a regular at the tournament.
Coyle, an Australian army colonel who's the defence attaché at the Australian embassy in Phnom Penh, says he really likes the tournament format of teams of four competing in the event. "It really is a team event," he says. "The FCC runs a really good tournament."
The tournament is based loosely on the Ryder Cup format as the FCC event follows a similar score card.
The first day of the tournament is aimed at establishing the players' handicaps while the second and final day is when the teams vie for the title. Some of the golfers who enter the event are quite hard-core while others are just out to have a good time, Jancloes says.
"It's a social gathering – we're not there to make any profit," he says, adding that the event is a good way to promote the FCC's presence and activities in Siem Reap.
When golfers aren't golfing, there's a good chance they can be seen having a drink on the course. "We have our iconic transfusion cocktail," Jancloes says about the popular drink that consists of vodka, cranberry juice and ginger ale.
The weekend's most sought after prize, which will be awarded provided that someone is able to sink a hole in one, will be an all-expenses-paid vacation to Siem Reap, Laos and Phnom Penh.
The FCC held its first Nations Cup in October 2008 when a dozen golfers turned out for the inaugural cup. The team from Vietnam, led by Saigon Stan Kinnear, easily ran away with the victory to become the first nation to win the trophy.
The money raised during the hole-in-one challenge goes to the Indochina Starfish Foundation, a Phnom Penh charity that started in 2006 and supports education and sports opportunities for underprivileged children.
Cost is US$280, which includes a hotel room, green fees, opening ceremony dinner, drinks and snacks on the course and a closing ceremony lunch.
The FCC also recently started hosting one-day golf challenges in Phnom Penh at the Cambodia Golf and Country Club. The challenge is a Texas scramble format with teams of two.
The first event took place in December while the second challenge was in February. "The last one we had 44 players," Jancloes says. "So we decided to do one every two months."
The next challenge is on April 28. Cost is US$80, which includes green fees, breakfast, drinks on the course and a BBQ lunch.
For more information or to register for either golf event, contact Leng Chantha at 093 222 745 or firstname.lastname@example.org