Cape Town - European Ryder Cup
captain Thomas Bjorn
will return to a happy hunting ground in Gary Player Country Club, the scene of
his last European Tour victory, after receiving an invite for the 2017 Nedbank
Golf Challenge hosted by Gary Player.
The Dane will make a
welcome return to South Africa, where four years ago he swept aside challenges
from the likes of Sergio Garcia, Henrik Stenson, and Justin Rose to claim the
Tour title of his glittering career.
Bjorn, whose 2013
triumph in Sun City was his first on South African soil, will tee it up
alongside some of the world’s finest players in the $7.5
million tournament, which takes place from November 9-12 and is
part of the 2017 Rolex Series - a collection of eight premium events.
delighted to be returning to the Gary Player Country Club at Sun City for the
Nedbank Golf Challenge,” Bjorn said.
“It is a
terrific event in a beautiful part of the world and I am very much looking
forward to competing there once again.
“My victory in
December 2013 was right up there with one of the best weeks of my career,
although it was also a week tinged with sadness, not just for the people of
South Africa, but for the entire world due to the passing of Nelson Mandela on
the first day of the tournament.
“I was proud
to win in the great man’s country that week and shooting 65 in the final round
to beat a field of that quality was something to truly cherish. There is no
doubt I will be returning with happy memories.”
Bjorn in ‘Africa’s Major’ is major champion Louis Oosthuizen. The South
African, who claimed his maiden Major title at the Open Championship at St
Andrews in 2010, will aim to improve on his previous
best finish of fourth place when he returns to Gary Player Country Club for a seventh
Also teeing it
up in the lucrative tournament – which has a limited field of 72 and is the 46th of 47 events in the 2017 Race to Dubai - is rising star Brandon Stone.
The 24-year-old, who hails from Pretoria, already has two European Tour titles to his name
after triumphing at the 2016 SA Open and
the 2017 Alfred Dunhill Championship, and is widely regarded as one of South
Africa’s brightest young talents.