Well, five-time British Open champion Peter Thomson would sure like to see it happen:
Thomson, who captained the International team to its only victory over the Americans in The Presidents Cup, believes the time is right for the biennial series to be played in China and is urging its government and golfing officials to launch a bid to host the 2015 Cup. The five-times British Open champion, whose golf course design company is active in China, is close to Chinese golfing officials and believes a successful bid can be launched. “They must start planning it now. The growth of golf in China is phenomenal and I believe the Chinese, by 2015, will be well represented in the International team. And China is wealthy enough to afford to host The Presidents Cup,” Thomson says. The US PGA Tour decides where the Cup is played, alternating between the US and an international country. It is believed to cost at least $US10 million to stage. Australia, South Africa and Canada have hosted the Cup, which next year returns to Royal Melbourne – where, in 1998, Thomson led the winning Internationals. His son Andrew, a former federal sports minister and now a lawyer in Beijing, is involved in lobbying the Chinese to bid for 2015.
China has proven it can play host to major events that attract major stars — so why not the Presidents Cup? Well, here’s one reason why I’d be skeptical of this happening anytime soon. From Wikipedia:
At the inaugural Presidents Cup in 1994, former U.S. President Gerald Ford was Honorary Chairman. Subsequent events saw former President George H. W. Bush, then-Australian Prime Minister John Howard, then-President Bill Clinton, the former President of South Africa Thabo Mbeki, George W. Bush and the Prime Minister of Canada Stephen Harper in the chair.
In today’s political climate, I can’t see a current or former Chinese General Secretary or President or Premier (or any other national official) putting themselves anywhere near such a golf event. If that were to happen, it would signal a dramatic and historic shift in the Chinese government’s public attitude toward golf. The last high-ranking Chinese official to be open about his golfing habit spent the final 15 years of his life under house arrest.
Maybe Barack Obama would fly to China to serve as Honorary Chairman? He seems to have no problem with being seen on the links.