With 10 teams, the Vizag Golf League will see 14 games played over the next seven weeks in Visakhapatnam

With 10 teams, the Vizag Golf League will see 14 games played over the next seven weeks in Visakhapatnam

Sylvan East Point Golf Club (EPGC) is bursting with energy as the second edition of the Vizag Golf League (VGL) begins. The long-awaited league was inaugurated last Sunday and the inaugural program was attended by Vice Admiral Biswajit Dasgupta, Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Naval Command (ENC), who was the chief guest.

VGL, which launched with eight teams last year, will see 10 teams participate this year with 12 players in each team and a prize money of ₹6 lakh. As part of the league, 14 games will be played over the next seven weeks. “This year, more than 140 EPGC members agreed to play for VGL, of which 120 were chosen. The idea is to encourage golfers to improve their game, spotlight East Point Golf Club and its facilities which are on par with other top golf courses in India and maintain the competitive spirit and l ‘enthusiasm among golfers,’ said the EPGC secretary. , Prashant Sagi.

EPGC’s newly designed 18-hole golf course was upgraded to a championship course in 2021 and is the only golf club in Andhra Pradesh. The winding course shaded by palm trees has 75 water-strewn bunkers on the long holes.

Over the past year, golf has attracted more enthusiasts in India and the EPGC has seen a similar increase in interest from golfers.

An aerial view of the redesigned East Point Golf Club as a Grade A championship course in Visakhapatnam

An aerial view of the redesigned East Point Golf Club into a Grade A championship course in Visakhapatnam | Photo credit: KR Deepak

According to Indian golf industry statistics, revenue around the game is currently around ₹75 crore and is expected to increase by 20-25% year-on-year in the immediate future.

“The energy is visible. Last year we hosted the South Zone Junior Golf Tournament in December and this year too the EPGC is preparing to host it again. It sparked a lot of motivation among junior golfers,” says Prashant.

According to TS Varma of the EPGC, VGL will create visibility for the club. After the EPGC upgrade, it was rated as moderate to high difficulty by the Indian Golf Union.

EPGC members say playing here in an 18-hole event is a test of physicality and fitness. “The design of the course is quite unique as it is surrounded by the Eastern Ghats range,” says Varma, who has been golfing for over 16 years. “Golf has been revived during the pandemic because it is the only sport that maintains social distancing. The wide acceptance and growing popularity of the sport has boosted the golf economy and industry and VGL is one of the steps towards creating an ecosystem for the sport,” he adds.