Cape Town - South
African sporting legend Ernie Els will bring added star power to an impressive
field at the Nedbank Golf Challenge hosted by Gary Player - the seventh Rolex
Series event on the 2019 Race to Dubai - from November 14-17, 2019.
four-time Major winner, who turned 50 on Thursday, has enjoyed great success at the Gary Player Country
Club, claiming the title three times - in 1999, 2000 and 2002.
He became the
third three-time winner of the prestigious event - after David Frost and Nick
Price - while Lee Westwood became the fourth player to join that prestigious
list last year by wrapping up a hat-trick of victories for his maiden Rolex
most recent Nedbank Golf Challenge victory came just a few months after he
triumphed in The Open for the first time, adding to the two US Open titles he
had claimed in 1994 and 1997.
The former world No 1 famously went on to lift
the Claret Jug a second time in 2012, making it 71 career victories
worldwide, including two World Golf Championships and a record seven
World Matchplay titles.
will also tee it up for the 40th anniversary of Sun City and Gary
Player Country Club as the current captain of the Presidents Cup International
Team, which will take on Tiger Woods’ United States side in Melbourne in
said: “It’s always a pleasure to play in South Africa and particularly at the
Nedbank Golf Challenge. I’ve got some great memories of the tournament -
particularly from my three wins - and I’m pleased that I’ve been able to
support the event as it has continued to grow over the years.
looking forward to a busy end of the year with the Presidents Cup coming up in
December. I’m pleased that I can include some competitive golf on home soil in
that schedule, and I’m sure it will be a memorable week, especially with the 40th
Player, tournament host, said: “I am thrilled that golf fans will once
again be treated to seeing one of the finest golfers in history competing at
the Gary Player Country Club for this Rolex Series event. Ernie’s success in
the Nedbank Golf Challenge is perhaps outshone only by his constant and loyal
support of this tournament over the years, which has been invaluable. I look
forward to shaking the big man’s hand on the first tee once again.”
joins a field that includes fellow South African Major winner Louis Oosthuizen
and another countryman in Branden Grace, who claimed his first Rolex Series
title at the Nedbank Golf Challenge two years ago.
field also includes European Ryder Cup Captain Padraig Harrington and English
Ryder Cup stars Tommy Fleetwood and Lee Westwood, who returns to defend his
Nedbank Golf Challenge title.
emotional three-stroke victory over Sergio Garcia in 2018 saw him capture his
first Rolex Series title and become the first European golfer to win the
Nedbank Golf Challenge three times, following his victories in 2010 and 2011.
Nedbank Golf Challenge will enhance its status as one of world golf’s elite
tournaments this season with an increase in both the first place prize money
and Race to Dubai points - the winner of the 2019 Nedbank Golf Challenge will
take home $2.5 million, an increase on the $1.25 million won by Westwood
overall prize fund remains at $7.5 million, with the balance of the 63-player
field from second place onwards playing for a $5 million prize fund.
year’s tournament also offers an increased haul of Race to Dubai points from
7 500 to 10 000, which places it above what the World Golf Championships