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South Africa to Hold Second-Richest Tournament in Golf


South Africa will be hosting the second-richest tournament in golf next year. The $8.5 million Tournament of Hope will be held November 21-24 in Johannesburg. The event will raise funds related to the socio-economic issues of HIV/AIDS.

Only the PGA Tour's Players Championship - with its $9.5 million total purse - offers more prize money. A 10-year contract has been finalized for the new tournament - originally announced in February of this year - by the International Federation of PGA Tours, event promoter SAIL and the Sunshine Tour.

The event will precede the South African Open, the Nelson Mandela Championship and the Alfred Dunhill Championship - all co-sanctioned by the European and Sunshine tours. A host course will be announced at a future date.

"The Tournament of Hope had long been agreed to in principal, but now that we have a signed contract with the International Federation of PGA Tours, confirming our 10-year hosting of the event, we can begin our preparations in earnest," said Michelle van Eyden of SAIL.

Further details at Tuesday's announcement included the field's make-up. "The Tournament of Hope field will comprise a maximum of 72 of the world's top players who will be drawn from the top 50 players on the Official World Golf Ranking, the top eight available players from the European Tour Race to Dubai, the top eight available players from the previous season's final PGA Tour FedEx Cup points list, as well as those with eligibility similar to that of the majors and four existing World Golf Championship events, and supplemented by the individual money lists and Orders of Merit of the various Tours that make up the International Federation of PGA Tours," said Selwyn Nathan, the Sunshine Tour's executive director.

"Our vision is to ensure that this tournament becomes globally recognized as one of the top tournaments in the world and successfully positions South Africa to an international audience," said Brand de Villiers, chairman of SAIL.

"South African golf has long been one of the great success stories in the history of the global game. We now have the opportunity to match the success of our players with the staging of a major tournament that will keep this country at the forefront of international golf, and right in the minds of the almost 100 million television viewers worldwide who will be watching it," added De Villiers.