A million thrills wait as golf series heads to Sun City
JOHANNESBURG – The first Standard Bank Pro-Am series tournament to be played outside of Gauteng in June was decided via an exciting playoff in which future star Isabella van Rooyen emerged victorious and now as the series’ national voyage heads to Rustenburg for its second ‘out-of-Gauteng’ tournament – the fourth in the series – the anticipation of who will rise in Sun City is almost palpable.
The Lost City Golf Course will host the first tournament of this series to be played in the North West – a sign of growth given that the inaugural season’s events were played only in and around Johannesburg – from Monday 1st August to 2nd August.
Her “home victory” at Atlantic Beach Links in the second tournament of the current season was as inspirational as it was thrilling because not only did it solidify her status as a competitive professional who has the big-match temperament to perform at the highest level, but it also exemplified the objectives of the series, which are in part, to provide a platform for young professional women golfers to compete against their more experienced counterparts early on in the careers, and as consistently as possible while introducing more to the game of golf.
The fourth stop on the schedule is the Lost City Golf Course in Sun City, North West. An iconic venue by all accounts, and a place where dreams can turn into reality. It’s a place of thrills and adventure, a place of opportunity. Players like Brittney-Fay Berger, Larissa du Preez, Van Rooyen, Shawnelle de Lange, Nadia van der Westhuizen and Kelsey Nicholas amongst many others, are some of those who will sense opportunities in Rustenburg. Berger, for one, having won a couple of teams’ competitions in the series, will feel she has enough in her to pull something off in Sun City. Similarly, with Du Preez, her sudden-death defeat to Van Rooyen in Cape Town was a clear sign that she can dig deep when it’s time to.
“We are very excited to bring one of our tournaments here in the North West province,” said Jenny Havenga, founder of Life Style Golf and the Standard Bank Pro-Am series.
“One of our main objectives is to drive and champion the growth of women’s golf in South Africa, from developmental stages through to professional levels. Our sponsors have been of great support and the game is growing. Sun City is a world-class venue and most of these golfers are familiar with the place, and I’m sure we’re going to see some great golf.
“We have already seen in our last three tournaments that there is great competition in the series; we saw how Nadia (Van der Westhuizen) fought back at Serengeti to end up losing by two to the eventual winner Tandi McCallum. We saw how brilliantly Larissa played in Cape Town and how consistent Bonita Bredenhann has been. Our golf development programme is also doing great things in the Eastern Cape, Western Cape, in Orange Farm as well as at Serengeti.”
The format of the R 500 000-tournament will be a two-day pro-am with the professional golfers gross scores counting on both days.
Whether they be playing for breakthrough wins, or the prestige of being the first to win a Standard Bank Pro-Am series tournament here; there will be a lot to play for.
Initiated by Lifestyle Golf, and in collaboration with the Women’s Professional Golf Association (WPGA), the series, which is now in its second year, is aimed at growing women’s golf on all levels and creating opportunities for them to play professionally throughout the year, which will enable them to hone their skills further.
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