Fun in the sun for PGA

HITTING out of the sand will take on new meaning when competitors tee-up for the PGA Tour of Australasia's new South Pacific Golf Open Championship.

Living out of a suitcase is part of life for any Professional golfer, but come this September PGA Pros will be throwing their boardshorts in with their clubs as they head to the PGA Tour of Australasia’s most exotic tournament destination, the South Pacific.
The newest tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia schedule, the exotic South Pacific Golf Open Championship will be played from September 14 – 17, 2011 at Tina Golf Club in Noumea.

A first for both the PGA Tour of Australasia and the local golf community, the Tour will head to Noumea for a fully sanctioned event that will count towards the Tour’s Order of Merit.
From humble beginnings as a pro am on the New South Wales circuit, the tournament has grown in stature and is now a confirmed event on the Tour schedule for the next five years.
“From Queensland’s Sunshine Coast to the Surf Coast of Victoria, the PGA Tour visits a number of destinations through the course of the year, but we are pleased to see this newest event the South Pacific Golf Open Championship break new ground,” said Brian Thorburn, Chief Executive Officer of the PGA of Australia.
“The growth of this tournament is testament to the hard work put in over the last few years by both our NSW Division and also the Tina Golf Club and I’m sure we will see this event grow even further in the coming years.”
The limited field four-round South Pacific Golf Open Championship will see a minimum of 70 Professionals head to Noumea in September where they will play for $110,000 with $16,500 going to the eventual Champion.
The Champion will also gain a spot in the Tour’s biggest events including the Australian Open, PGA Championship, NZ Open and JBWere Masters as well as a start in the majority of the remaining 2011 OneAsia events.
The tournament will feature an innovative pro-am style format for the first two rounds with Professionals set to play alongside local amateurs.
Patrick Koch, President of Tina Golf Club and Tournament Director said the elevation of the tournament was a huge coup for the local golf community.
“The elevation of this event to the PGA Tour of Australasia means a lot to us as the tournament has the support of everybody here in New Caledonia,” said Koch.
“We have very strong ties with Australian golf and thanks must go to everyone who has made this possible including the players who supported this event as part of the pro am circuit. Hopefully this will be the start of something big not only for this tournament but also for our local golfers.”

Just 10 minutes from the town centre, the 72 par Tina Golf Club exploits local geographic diversity along the shore, mangroves and beaches.
Tina, with its club house whose terrace overlooks the practice area, is considered by seasoned golfers to be one of the best courses in the South Pacific.

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