The Lion of Africa Cape Town Open returns to Royal Cape Golf Club from October 31 to November 3.
The inaugural tournament was played last year, bringing big-time professional golf back to the Mother City after an absence of over a decade, with Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille hitting the ceremonial first tee-shot on November 22, 2012.
She said then, “We’ve become involved because it’s the first international tournament in 11 years that Cape Town has hosted, and with this event we hope to continue to be a partner of Lion of Africa in taking this event forward.
“I really hope that we can continue to have this every year in Cape Town, because we want to position ourselves as the best event capital on the continent,” she added.
Lion of Africa Insurance Company, South Africa’s only Level 1 B-BBEE short-term insurer, is the title sponsor of the four-round tournament, which will feature a full field of 156 of the Sunshine Tour’s leading professionals. The winner’s share of the prize find is an impressive R317000.
“After a very successful inaugural tournament last year, we are pleased to be associated with the Cape Town Open,” says Fred Robertson, chairman of Lion of Africa Insurance Company. “As a leader in empowerment and transformation in the financial services sector, Lion of Africa is proud of being instrumental in ensuring that professional golf has a permanent place on the Cape Town calendar.”
The first tournament was won by Jake Roos in a thrilling four-way playoff with Jaco van Zyl, Tyrone van Aswegen and Mark Williams.
Roos is returning to defend his title, and the tournament will feature many of the top professionals who have won on the Sunshine Tour this year, including first-time winners Dean Burmester, Jacques Blaauw, Heinrich Bruiners and Neil Schietekat.
Van Zyl and Williams will return, and other Sunshine Tour winners from the 2013 season who have entered include Adilson Da Silva, Jean Hugo, Dawie van der Walt, Andrew Curlewis and Merrick Bremner.
There will also be two South African Open Championship winners in the field in James Kingston, who won in 2007, and Hennie Otto, the 2011 champion.
The South African Open has been hosted by Royal Cape 10 times, the first in 1910 and the most recent in 1996 when Ernie Els birdied the last three holes to win by one shot. Gary Player won in 1965 when he became the first player to break 70 in all four rounds. His four-round total of 273 (69-68-67-69) was also a record for the event.
“The Sunshine Tour is pleased to have professional golf back in Cape Town for the second year in a row, and we are proud to be associated with Lion of Africa and with the City of Cape Town,” says Sunshine Tour chief operating officer Grant Wilson.