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Nedbank Golf Challenge

Nedbank Golf Challenge

The Nedbank Golf Challenge is an annual golf tournament played on the Sun City Gary Player Country Club Course which is situated in South Africas North West Province. It has been over three decades since the inaugural event was played in 1981. The tournament which was the brainchild of Gary Player and founded by Sol Kerzner was first known as the Million Dollar Challenge and was originally an exhibition of golf rather than a tournament. The first event had only five players but over the years it has grown into a fully fledged tournament complete with official world ranking. Known as the African Major, the Nedbank Golf Challenge has become the greatest showcase of golf on the African continent. The event is played during the first week of December every year after the PGA Tours FedEx Cup and the European Tours Race to Dubai have been completed and in 2010 it saw some of the biggest names in professional golf competing.

Over the years the tournament has had a number of different names. During its years as the Million Dollar Challenge, the tournament had a total prize of one million dollars with the winner taking home a share totalling three hundred thousand dollars. Nedbank has been involved in the tournament since its inception in 1981 but in 1994 it took the mantle as the title sponsor. By 2010 the total purse was increased to 5 million US dollars with the winner taking home 1.25 million US Dollars putting the prize distribution almost on par with the normal pattern for a professional tournament. Over the course of the 4 days the event is televised to close on 1.4 billion people in over 200 countries. 2010 was the first year that the tournament was broadcasted in high definition (HD).

The selection process for the 12 positions is made up of the Defending Champion and the winner of the South African Tour Order of Merit, wth the remaining ten positions being awarded to the top ten places as per the Official World Rankings after the US PGA starting from number one.

Each year Nedbank and Sun International host The Sports Trust Challenge which is played the day after the Nedbank Golf Challenge in order to raise money for the Sports Trust. The Sport Trust which was founded by Nedbank and Sun International plays an important part in developing sports in South Africa, with the challenge raising over one million Rand each year. Corporates pay to enter a four-ball, and play the Gary Player course in the same layout as the previous days Nedbank Golf Challenge last round.

The Nedbank Golf Challenge 2011 will take place at Sun City from 1 to 4 December 2011.

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