JOHANNESBURG – The new-look SA Open – now hosted by the City of Johannesburg – will be played at Randpark Golf Club’s two courses from December 6-9, it was announced on Monday.
The second oldest Open in world golf has merged with the old Joburg Open and will in future be partnered with GolfRSA, the City of Joburg and the European and Asian Tours. It will also form part of the local Sunshine Tour.
The tournament will be played over Randpark’s two courses – Bushwillow and Firethorn – and will feature a field of 240 players, including Louis Oosthuizen, Charl Schwartzel, Branden Grace and former champion Brandon Stone.
Prize-money for the event will total R17.5-million.
The Executive Mayor of Johannesburg, Herman Mashaba, said he was delighted that the city would continue to position itself at the forefront of world golf through its hosting of the tournament.
This will be the third time the SA Open is played at Randpark. In 1995 Retief Goosen beat Ernie Els by five strokes and then in 2000 Swede Mathias Gronberg won the title.
Last year’s Joburg Open was staged at the venue, with India’s Shubhankar Sharma edging out local Erik van Rooyen for the title.
The SA Open defending champion is Chris Paisley from England, who beat Grace by three strokes at Glendower the last time the event was played, earlier this season.
Meanwhile, the Soweto Country Club will also become the official legacy project to the SA Open. Working with the City of Joburg and corporate South Africa efforts are underway to ensure that the Soweto CC becomes a top golf destination.@jacq_west