Wednesday, 14 April 2021 15:52

By Michael Vlismas.

South Africa's top junior golfers will walk in the footsteps of Major winners, world number ones and Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup stars when they compete on the legendary Gary Player Country Club golf course in the Nedbank Junior Challenge from 3-5 May and for the chance to join golf royalty at the next Nedbank Golf Challenge.

This premier junior tournament on the GolfRSA calendar, played at the home of the Nedbank Golf Challenge at Sun City, will feature the country's elite junior amateur golfers and the rising stars of the South African Golf Development Board in a 54-hole competition offering both GolfRSA and World Amateur Golf Ranking points.

The 78-golfer field for the Nedbank Junior Challenge is focused on depth and inclusivity to incorporate a talented but also diverse field.

The field will be drawn from the top 50 on the GolfRSA National Under-19 rankings, the top 5 South African Golf Development Board (SAGDB) Elite Squad members and 14 leading development players from around the country. Additional spots will be filled from an open entry process for this first edition of the Nedbank Junior Challenge.

The overall winner will receive a replica of the famous Nedbank Golf Challenge trophy, as well as a behind-the-scenes experience at the next Nedbank Golf Challenge aimed at furthering the development of the game through the aspirational effect of attending "Africa's Major".

The winner will be invited to attend the next Nedbank Golf Challenge for an inside-the-ropes experience of this international event, highlighted by exclusive access to walk the golf course during the official Wednesday Pro-Am.

"We are delighted to be able to partner with GolfRSA and Sun International in hosting what is a major tournament on the national amateur calendar and which will truly showcase the depth in junior golf talent we have in South Africa. And we're particularly excited about being able to include the South African Golf Development Board in this tournament as we seek to keep supporting the development of golf throughout the country," said Tobie Badenhorst, Head: Group Sponsorships and Cause Marketing, Nedbank.

On behalf of Sun International, Ken Payet – the Operations Manager for Sport and Recreation at Sun City, and the Tournament Director of the Nedbank Golf Challenge – said they were looking forward to welcoming the best junior golf talent in South Africa to the fairways of the Gary Player Country Club.

"Junior golf is very close to our hearts. Every South African professional that's competed in the Nedbank Golf Challenge had their start in South African junior golf and benefitted from the excellent programmes and tournaments run by GolfRSA. So we're proud to be able to support this and, together with our longstanding partner Nedbank, to continue to play a role in the sustained excellence of South African golf.

"The Nedbank Junior Challenge is also a fitting event to tee off our popular Nedbank Golf Challenge Amateur Series for recreational amateur golfers, which will include a further three tournaments from May to October at Sun City and the Wild Coast Sun."

Grant Hepburn, the Chief Executive Officer of GolfRSA, thanked both Nedbank and Sun International for their continued support of South African amateur golf.

"The strength of South African golf is the passion of the people and sponsors involved to see the game succeed. The Nedbank Junior Challenge is a perfect example of this as it focuses not only on the elite juniors but also the rising stars in the South African Golf Development Board. We are incredibly grateful to both Nedbank and Sun International for this wonderful commitment to the amateur game."