By Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja
Port Harcourt Club Golf Section has been declared the host of the third edition of the West Africa Golf Tour from May 12 to May 15.
The Port Harcourt Classic is a 72-hole professional tournament with a cut of 40 players and ties made after 36 holes. The winner will take $8,000 and win 500 points. The total prize purse is $50,000.
The President of the West Africa Tour, Emeka Okatta, said the city was selected because it met all the requirements to host an international tournament of such scope.
Okatta was hopeful that the event will be bigger than the previous editions held in Abuja and Ilara-Mokin in February and March this year.
The Captain of Port Harcourt Club Golf Section, Emmanuel Okene, applauded the decision to stage the tournament in the Garden City. He noted that the club in collaboration with other partners would work to deliver a world-class tournament that the state government and all stakeholders would be proud of.
“Rivers State is excited by this news as this is an opportunity to showcase our golf course to the world. It will also impact on the efforts to develop the game on different platforms as a product that will attract corporate interest and more players,” Okene declared.
Port Harcourt Club which was founded in 1928 plays as a par 70 golf course and is 5,457 meters in length.
The professional field is expected to comprise mainly of golfers from West and Central Africa region. Nigerian players, Oche Odoh and Kingsley Oparaku won the first two editions.
Amateur golfers will similarly be part of the excitement as they will be playing on May 14- 15. All players are expected to pay the registration fee of N20,000 to be eligible while registration will close two weeks before the event.
The Port Harcourt Classic will be followed by the B & E Match Play from June 22 -26 June 2016 in Abuja. The event also on the West Africa Golf Tour will grant 600 points for the Order of Merit. The Professionals will play from June 23-26, while the amateur hold their event on June 25-26.