The Vodacom Origins of Golf celebrates 20 years as the premier pro-am series on the Sunshine Tour this season. Vodacom has announced a three-year renewal of a series that has defined the careers of some of South African golf’s leading stars and contributed significantly to the overall growth of the game.
In celebration of this milestone, Vodacom and the Sunshine Tour will make history on the series this year. Ten Sunshine Ladies Tour professionals will compete alongside the Sunshine Tour professionals in the same tournament for the same prize money.
The overall prize money on the four-tournament series has also been increased to R2 million per tournament.
The announcement marks another significant investment into South African golf for a Vodacom Origins of Golf series that since 2004 has seen over 100 tournaments played at the leading golf courses around South Africa, with over R100 million invested into the local professional game.
“We are delighted to announce a landmark feature which will see Sunshine Ladies Tour professionals competing alongside Sunshine Tour professionals in pursuit of the same prize. This goes a long way in efforts to bridge the divide between the gender parity gap and is aligned with Vodacom’s pillar of Inclusion for All. Vodacom is also proud to announce the renewal of the Vodacom Origins of Golf series for a further three years,” said Andisa Ntsubane, Managing Executive for Brand, Marketing and Sponsorships at Vodacom South Africa.
“The Vodacom Origins of Golf series remains a valuable tool for interaction with our customers as they share the fairways with the professionals, but also to meet our objectives of always making an impact in our communities.”
“Since the start of this series in 2004, it has been closely aligned with our overall objectives of supporting the elite professional game in South Africa while at the same time growing the game through the golf clinics at every tournament with young golfers from that area.”
“We are a company that turns problems into possibilities, with the clear messaging to Turn to Us to be empowered,” concluded Ntsubane.
Thomas Abt, Commissioner of the Sunshine Tour, said, “It’s a magnificent milestone for the Vodacom Origins of Golf to be celebrating a 20-year partnership with the Sunshine Tour. Vodacom has long been a strong and loyal supporter of South African golf. This series is the bedrock of our winter schedule on the Tour and gives our members valuable playing opportunities as they seek to grow their games for the international stage.”
“We are truly grateful to be able to look forward to another three years of a series that is unique in its pro-am offering and the experience it provides, and which truly embodies the ethos of Vodacom and the Sunshine Tour to deliver greatness on our fairways.”
For two decades, the Vodacom Origins of Golf has reflected the changes in the global game through innovative activations. These range from celebrating the game’s earliest roots with a theme of vintage cars and plus fours to paying homage to the careers of legends Gary Player, Ernie Els, and Retief Goosen in the years that the series was played in honor of their contributions to South African golf.
“The philosophy has always been to keep innovating in terms of the ultimate golf experience and to evolve with the changes in the game. The experience puts you at the cutting edge of not only the professional playing side of the game and the new generation of stars on the Sunshine Tour, but also the technology and style that is changing the face of the game. We look forward to raising that bar even higher in 2023,” said Jaco Beukes, CEO of SAIL and the rights holders of the Vodacom Origins of Golf series.
The Vodacom Origins of Golf has been the platform for a selection of South African golf’s stars to launch their careers.
Major champion Louis Oosthuizen won his first Sunshine Tour title in a Vodacom Origins of Golf tournament. Fellow Major winner Charl Schwartzel has also competed in the series. Branden Grace, George Coetzee, Dean Burmester, Thriston Lawrence, Justin Harding, and Ockie Strydom have all claimed victories on the series on their way to international success.
From experienced professionals such as James Kamte, Madalitso Muthiya, Jean Hugo, Heinrich Bruiners, Brandon Stone, Toto Thimba Jnr., Zander Lombard, Keenan Davidse, and Daniel van Tonder, to rising stars like Dylan Naidoo, Wilco Nienaber, Yurav Premlall, Martin Vorster, and Casey Jarvis, the Vodacom Origins of Golf series has been a vital platform for their careers.
This year’s Vodacom Origins of Golf series tees off in Limpopo at the Zebula Country Club in August. It will be followed by tournaments at Devonvale Golf and Wine Estate in the Western Cape in September, the Wild Coast Sun Country Club in KwaZulu-Natal in October, and the Grand Final at the Pezula Championship Course in November.
VODACOM ORIGINS OF GOLF SCHEDULE
11-13 August: Vodacom Origins of Golf Zebula Country Club
15-17 September: Vodacom Origins of Golf Devonvale Golf and Wine Estate
20-22 October: Vodacom Origins of Golf Wild Coast Sun Country Club
2-5 November: Vodacom Origins of Golf Grand Final Pezula Championship Course
- Sunshine Ladies Tour professional Tandi McCallum speaking at the launch of the Vodacom Origins of Golf at The World of Golf on Tuesday.
- Andisa Ntsubane, Managing Executive for Brand, Marketing and Sponsorships at Vodacom South Africa.