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Sunshine Tour brightens pathway for young pros

Sunshine Tour brightens pathway for young pros

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Johannesburg – Sunshine Tour has managed to expand its global reach through its strategic alliance with the DP World Tour, one of the two most popular professional golf tours in the world.

As a result, Southern African golfers will have a chance to play more tournaments on home soil in the coming months. It will help them to stay sharp and not only rely on playing events on sponsor exemptions.

Thomas Abt, the Sunshine Tour commissioner, recently announced the Southern African tour would add two new DP World Tour events and four Challenge Tour events to its 2023 schedule.

This will be a massive boost for golfers and bolster the growth of new talent emerging on the Sunshine Tour.

“We have worked hard to grow our global pathway as part of a strategic alliance with the Challenge Tour, DP World Tour and PGA Tour. What this means is more opportunities for our members to take their careers to the next level,” said Abt.

“It is an invaluable opportunity for our members to be able to play Challenge Tour and DP World Tour events on home soil, which gives them the best opportunity to earn a place on these Tours and keep progressing in their careers.”

More good news from the Sunshine Tour is that it has landed a ground-breaking deal for its top 50 players. The deal will ensure great benefits for the golfers, and its services will only be available in South Africa.

“The initial two-year sponsorship deal with Momentum will see those professionals who ended in the top 50 on the final Order of Merit in May 2022, receiving cover for the 2023 calendar year,” said Abt.

“Those players who finish in the top 50 by the end of May 2023 will then receive the same for the 2024 calendar year. Beyond the traditional private medical aid offering, the additional benefits for the leading Sunshine Tour professionals will be access to Momentum’s Multiply wellness programme, which provides for the opportunity to save for additional day-to-day medical expenses,” Abt said.

“The offering is only for South Africa, and not internationally.”

The Sunshine Tour has gone to great lengths to ease the plight of local golfers who are keen to join the tour and play frequently, but are battling to play enough events in their start-up season.

“Through the formation of the Papwa Sewgolum Class, we have specifically created opportunities for our historically-disadvantaged professionals to gain more playing opportunities,” said Abt.

“We have excellent partners and sponsors who are as committed to this vision as we are, and who are doing a tremendous job in supporting us, from helping to pay certain running costs for these players, to insurance for their golf clubs and invitations to play in major tournaments.

“For example, this week at the Investec South African Open, one of our Papwa Sewgolum Class golfers – Keelan van Wyk – was given an invitation to compete. That is an opportunity at the highest level.”

The ongoing war between LIV and the PGA Tour has not impacted the Sunshine Tour.

“The Sunshine Tour has a long-standing alliance with the DP World Tour and the PGA Tour, and the global pathways created to these tours for our members,” said Abt.

“Our focus remains on growing this pathway and the opportunities it provides for our members.”


IOL Sport

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