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Sunshine Tour welcomes back limited number of fans at tournaments 1

20th December 2021

Sunshine Tour announces strong growth for 2022 schedule

The Sunshine Tour has announced a bold start to 2022 with a schedule including two new tournaments co-sanctioned with the DP World Tour, and seven tournaments co-sanctioned with the Challenge Tour including a new event in Tanzania.

The opening four months of the New Year will see South Africa’s professional golfers competing for almost R80 million in total tournament prizemoney in what is an extremely strong and lucrative start to the Sunshine Tour season.

“A tremendous amount of work together with the ongoing support of our Chairman Mr Johann Rupert, our Executive Director Selwyn Nathan, our Board of Directors, our partners and sponsors has allowed us to announce what we believe is a fabulous Sunshine Tour schedule to start the year with,” said Thomas Abt, Commissioner of the Sunshine Tour.

“We are delighted to be able to grow our relationship with the DP World Tour and the Challenge Tour with the offering of even more opportunities for our member professionals to secure a place on an international tour while playing at home. This significantly enhances what has always been our global pathway to success for our professionals.

“We also have several new sponsors on board that have recognised the value professional golf offers. I’d also like to pay tribute to our existing sponsors – Dimension Data, Bain’s Whisky, City of Cape Town, the Limpopo Tourism Authority, Vodacom and the Kit Kat Group – many of whom have been with us for a very long time and who continue to give us the means to build on a Sunshine Tour brand that is globally recognised as a place of opportunity and reflective of our slogan that ‘GreatnessBeginsHere’.”

The Sunshine Tour’s 2022 schedule tees off in the final week in January with the Vodacom Origins of Golf Final at the Gary Player Country Club in Sun City.

February, March and April include the Challenge Tour’s Southern African Swing, which has now grown from three tournaments to seven.

The first new event is the Jonsson Workwear Open, which will be played at both Durban Country Club and Mt Edgecombe Country Club.

“Creating opportunities for passionate people to perform at their peak is the common thread that ties the Sunshine Tour to Jonsson Workwear. We are proud to introduce the Jonsson Workwear Open, a flagship event that will support our continuous efforts in building Durban as a city and KwaZulu-Natal as a region of endless possibilities,” said Nick Jonsson, Chairman and CEO of Jonsson Workwear.

This is followed by the Mangaung Open at both Bloemfontein Golf Club and Schoeman Park Golf Club.

The SDC Open also joins the Challenge Tour co-sanctioned schedule and will be played at the Zebula Golf Estate & Spa and Elements Private Golf Reserve in Limpopo.

“As an organization passionate about developing others in their personal and professional life, we took up this opportunity as a means of getting a greater awareness around what the SDC Group does to develop and grow the skills and wealth of people in South Africa. We are honoured to be associated with the prestige that comes with the tournament,” said Daniel Gibhard, CEO of the Skills Development Corporation (SDC).

The Tour then branches out into Tanzania for the first time for the new Mount Kilimanjaro Klassic at the Kilimanjaro Golf & Wildlife Estate in Tanzania.

“Tanzania’s Tourism is one of the main pillars of our economy. Golf has been identified as a major catalyst for tourism development globally. The launch of the Challenge Tour tournament will go a long way in developing golf tourism to showcase our unparalleled natural attractions,” said the Hon. Dr Damas Ndumbaro, Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism in Tanzania.

These new Challenge Tour events join the existing Dimension Data Pro-Am (Fancourt), Bain’s Whisky Cape Town Open (Royal Cape Golf Club and Rondebosch Golf Club), and the Limpopo Championship (Euphoria Golf & Lifestyle Estate and Koro Creek Bushveld Estate).

March features the two new tournaments co-sanctioned with the DP World Tour, the $1.5 million Pecanwood Classic at the Pecanwood Golf Estate and the $1.5 million Steyn City Championship at Steyn City.

This takes to a total of five the number of tournaments the Sunshine Tour hosts on the DP World Tour, adding to the Joburg Open, South African Open and Alfred Dunhill Championship.

The Kit Kat Group Pro-Am (Irene Country Club), Players Championship (Dainfern Golf Estate) and Tour Championship (Serengeti Estates) round off the new schedule.

And the country’s next generation of stars will have the opportunity to play their way onto the Sunshine Tour through either the Sunshine Tour Qualifying School or the Vusi Ngubeni Tournament for transformation golfers.

Sunshine Tour 2022 Schedule

17-20 January – Sunshine Tour Qualifying School First Stage (Maccauvlei GC and Benoni CC)

28-30 January – Vodacom Origins of Golf Final R1 000 000 (Gary Player CC, Sun City)

4-6 February – Kit Kat Group Pro-Am R1 000 000 (Irene CC)

10-13 February – Dimension Data Pro-Am $375 000 (Fancourt)

17-20 February – Bain’s Whisky Cape Town Open $250 000 (Royal Cape GC and Rondebosch GC)

24-27 February – Jonsson Workwear Open $250 000 (Durban CC and Mt Edgecombe CC)

3-6 March – Mangaung Open $250 000 (Bloemfontein GC and Schoeman Park GC)

8-9 March – Vusi Ngubeni Qualifying Tournament (Modderfontein GC)

10-13 March – Pecanwood Classic $1 500 000 (Pecanwood Golf and Country Club)

17-20 March – Steyn City Championship $1 500 000 (Steyn City)

24-27 March – SDC Open $250 000 (Zebula Golf Estate & Spa and Elements Private Golf Reserve)

31 March – 3 April – Limpopo Championship $250 000 (Euphoria Golf & Lifestyle Estate and Koro Creek Bushveld Estate)

7-10 April – Mount Kilimanjaro Klassic $275 000 (Kilimanjaro Golf & Wildlife Estate)

21-24 April – The Players Championship R2 000 000 (Dainfern Golf Estate)

28 April – 1 May Tour Championship R1 500 000 (Serengeti Estates)

26-29 April – Sunshine Tour Qualifying School Final Stage R100 000 (Gauteng – Venue TBC)

26-29 April – Vusi Ngubeni Tournament R100 000 (Gauteng – Venue TBC)

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14th December 2021

New Steyn City Championship tees off on DP World Tour schedule

The Club at Steyn City in the north of Johannesburg will host its first major international tournament with the new $1.5 million Steyn City Championship, which will make its debut on the Sunshine Tour and DP World Tour schedule in March 2022.

The Steyn City Championship, scheduled to take place from 17-20 March 2022, will be the fifth tournament co-sanctioned by both the Sunshine Tour and DP World Tour and will feature prominently amidst a strong South African Swing of DP World Tour and Challenge Tour events on local fairways.

Steyn City now takes its place on the global DP World Tour schedule, which visits 27 different countries in 12 months, putting the international focus squarely on this Nicklaus-design golf course.

“We are very excited to welcome The Club at Steyn City to our co-sanctioned schedule, and to be able to grow our international golf offering with another world-class event at an equally world-class venue,” said Thomas Abt, Commissioner of the Sunshine Tour.

“We have been discussing ways to develop a relationship with Steyn City and I’m delighted that we can announce this new tournament in partnership with the DP World Tour, and bring yet another major international golf tournament to the City of Johannesburg.”

The Nicklaus-design championship golf course anchors the internationally award-winning Steyn City Parkland Residence north of Fourways, Johannesburg.

The Steyn City Championship will showcase not only a magnificent golf course, but also one of the most talked about residential estates in South Africa – which was recently listed among the world’s top ten estates by wealth intelligence firm New World Wealth – to an international audience.

“It’s tremendously exciting for us to welcome our members and residents to this prestigious event, right on their home ground,” said Giuseppe Plumari, CEO of Steyn City Properties. “We’re equally thrilled to partner with the DP World Tour and Sunshine Tour and open our doors to all attending corporates and, of course, the players.”

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8th December 2021

Van Tonder wins the SA Open

Daniel van Tonder echoed exactly what every South African golfer dreams of when he said, “I can walk around knowing I’m the South African Open champion”.

With his one-stroke victory at the Gary Player Country Club on Sunday, Van Tonder joined the greats of South African golf in adding his name to this prestigious trophy.

“This is a special win. This is the second oldest Open in golf, and winning it is big. Watching people win it has always looked so good. And now I can say I’m the SA Open champion,” said Van Tonder.

On an overcast and at times wet Sunday at Sun City, Van Tonder produced a magnificent final round of 65 and birdied the final hole to win on 16 under par.

Oliver Bekker took second place on 15 under with a closing 66, and Hennie du Plessis finished third on 12 under with a final round of 69. The Freddie Tait trophy for the leading amateur went to GolfRSA National Squad member Yurav Premlall who finished in a share of 30th on two under par with a final round of 75.

Sunday morning began with the third round still to be completed, and with Justin Harding taking a commanding four-stroke lead at the end of it. But Van Tonder held his nerve and began his run with a birdie at the first hole. He turned in three under for his round and then produced the kind of back nine worthy of a champion as he made four birdies – including two in his last three holes – to take the title.

“I’ve been seven shots behind before. I’ve even been nine shots behind before. So I just played my game and made my putts. My mindset was to just go for it,” he said.

The win caps a memorable year for Van Tonder in which he claimed his maiden DP World Tour title  and played in two Majors for the first time.

“This year has been incredible, but it’s also been long and hard. We’ve been away for six months because of the travel restrictions. So to come back home and to a golf course I love, and win the South African Open is very special,” he said.

The amateur Premlall was delighted with his Freddie Tait triumph in his fourth appearance in the South African Open.

“I’ve waited a long time for this and it’s something I’ve always wanted. This one means a lot to me,” he said.