Harare Open back on ZPGA Tour
Takudzwa Chitsiga Sports Reporter
THE prestigious Harare Open golf tournament will return to the local golfing radar after a three-year sabbatical.
The high-profile event was last held at Royal Harare in 2014 before it was launched at Chapman Golf Club yesterday.
It is one of the tournaments which the Zimbabwe Professional Golfers Association have managed to bring on board this year after the JM Busha and National Aids Council golf tournaments.
Led by Garry Thompson, the new ZPGA executive are working flat out to ensure that local professionals, at least, get a number of competitive tournaments.
The Harare Open will be supported by the Harare City Council who have promised to put a $20 000 purse for the players.
It has been slated for August 9-10 at Chapman.
At least 40 professional golfers and several amateurs are expected to tee off at this tournament.
The Harare Open was once one of the most sought-after local tournaments, drawing players from as far as Zambia and South Africa.
Usually, it was held a week before the prestigious Zimbabwe Open and organised by the Zambezi Tour and would take the Zimbabwe Open title sponsor’s name.
“We are very happy to have one of the biggest tournaments back on the calendar and we hope it is going to give our players something to smile about,” said Thompson.
“It has been some time since we had an event for our professionals, but at last, we are growing in confidence as our partners are understanding our plight.”
The Mayor of Harare and guest of honour at the event, Ben Manyenyeni, said they hope the event will emulate some tournaments like the Jo’burg Open, BMW South Africa Open hosted by City of Ekurhuleni Open and the Tswane Open which have gone on to be part of the European Tour.
“We are happy to support ZPGA with the Harare Open and I believe it is going to change the face of golf in the country as well as promote the Sunshine City.
“We have the capacity to hold these sports events and I think we will continue doing this in the future,” said Manyenyeni.