By JACK AMI
Australian Daniel Gale will return to defend his Papua New Guinea Golf Open title, with South Pacific Brewery injecting K403,000 to continue its support of the tournament.
SP Brewery managing director Stan Joyce said in Port Moresby yesterday that the sponsorship was increased by five per cent from last year under the SP Lager flagship brand.
This is SP Brewery’s 13th straight year of sponsoring the tournament.
The SP PNG Golf Open, a tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia, will be held at the Royal Port Moresby Golf Club on May 6-12.
PGA Australia Queensland and Northern Territory division general manager Broc Greenhalgh said he was looking forward to the tournament which would see champion Daniel Gale return to defend the title. “I’m delighted to announce that Daniel Gale will be here to defend the title,” he said.
Gale did the double last year winning the Morobe Open and the PNG Open on consuctive weekends. New South Welshman won the PNG Open by a nine shot margin. He set a new course record of 11 under par in the penultimate round, closed with an impressive six under 66 to finish on 23 under the card, securing his first victory on the PGA Tour of Australasia.
PNGGA treasurer Alasdair Hinchliffe commended SP Brewery for its continued support.
“This event is growing in significance and popularity each year to bring about success,” he said.
Joyce said PNG Golf Open was one of biggest international golfing tournaments in the Pacific and “as the naming-rights sponsor, we are excited to be involved with the tournament again”.
“We would like to acknowledge the work and commitment which organisers have put into staging this event,” he said.
Joyce said the professionalism shown over the years by local and visiting golfers was proof that PNG could host the region’s top golfers.
“It is only right that such an event should be sponsored under the biggest brand, SP Lager, which has a long, successful history of supporting the grassroots level and elite sports in the country,” he said.
Joyce encouraged corporate sponsors to support the tournament. “We anticipate at least 80 professionals and amateurs this year,” he said. Joyce said SP Brewery’s partnership with PNG Golf Association (PNGGA) and Royal Port Moresby Golf Club had seen significant growth in the sport over the years.
By JACK AMI