New Delhi: Cricketing legend Kapil Dev announced on Monday the launch of a new annual golf tournament, in association with the Professional Golf Tour of India (PGTI) and Grant Thornton.
The tournament, called the Kapil Dev-Grant Thornton Invitational, will see professionals playing alongside amateurs, companies and celebrity golfers.
The tournament, due to take place September 27-30, will be the first-ever full PGTI event to take place on the Gary Player-designed course at DLF Golf and Country Club in Gurugram.
The tournament will carry a total prize pool of Rs 1 crore and will feature 126 professional golfers, to start. After two days, the top 50 players and ties will qualify for the final stages.
The tournament will give amateur teams, made up of golfers, celebrities and business leaders, a chance to team up with the pros in rounds 3 and 4 to compete for separate team prizes. This gives golfers at the club a unique opportunity to experience what professional golfers experience during the final two days of a tournament, organizers said in a statement on Monday.
During the announcement, Kapil Dev said, “I am truly excited about the tournament and would like to thank Vishesh Chandiok for sharing my vision of creating a truly landmark event in Indian golf history. I also express my gratitude to the DLF for agreeing to host the event. The event was created with other great global events in mind, such as the annual Pebble Beach Pro-Am on the US PGA Tour and the European Tour’s Dunhill Championship in St. Andrews, the birthplace of golf. .
Kapil Dev, captain of India to World Cup glory in 1983, is a board member of PGTI and an active ambassador for golf development in the country.
Speaking at the launch, Vishesh C. Chandiok, CEO of Grant Thornton Bharat, said: “This format has been tested and proven over several years on the PGA and European Tours to be a success.
“It fosters engagement between fans and players – because golf allows for this pro-am format and we intend to use it to build interest in professional golf in India,” Chandiok added.
Uttam Singh Mundy, CEO of PGTI, said, “We at PGTI are delighted to add the Kapil Dev-Grant Thornton Invitational to our schedule. We thank our board member, Kapil Dev, for being the driving force behind the launch of this event. We also thank Grant Thornton Bharat and all the other partners of the event for contributing to the growth of Indian professional golf.