The prestigious Alfred Dunhill Championship will take place for the ninth time at the highly-exclusive Leopard Creek Country Club near Malelane, Mpumulanga.
The first playing of this event was in fact in January 2000 at Houghton Golf Club as a replacement for the South African PGA Championship, a co-sanctioned tournament on the European Tour. In 2004, the tournament was rescheduled to December, resulting in two events being staged that year. Following this change, the Alfred Dunhill Championship has formed part of the following year’s European Tour season. In addition, the event was moved to Leopard Creek Country Club.
Of the 13 past champions, only four of them are South Africans being Ernie Els, Charl Schwartzel, Richard Sterne and Garth Mulroy. Other well-known past champions also include, Johannesburg born Briton Justin Rose, Australian Adam Scott, and the big-hitting Spaniard Alvaro Quiros.
In 2009 Spaniard Pablo Martin took his first European Tour title when he held off a resilient Schwartzel by one shot. Martin’s favour for the course with a second consecutive victory at he 2010 event. He closed the final day two strokes clear of a three-way tie for second between Charl Schwartzel, Antony Michael and Thorbjorn Oleson.
Last year Garth Mulroy claimed a two-stroke victory over Scotland’s George Murray. It was a breakthrough victory for the 34-year-old, who subsequently earned cards for both the European and PGA Tours.
This year the field has some huge names, including former champion Richard Sterne and Masters champion Charl Schwartzel. The strength of the field promises some intense showdowns!
Prize Fund: Â1,5 million
Format: 156 professionals make up the field for the first two days. The cut will be the top 65 players and ties after 36 holes.
Tournament director: Theo Manyama (Sunshine Tour), David Williams (European Tour)
Tournament co-ordinator: Pauli van Meersbergen
Tournament secretary: Dornay Lombard (Sunshine Tour)/ Dorothee Demoulins (European Tour)