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Pga Launches Powerplay Golf Championship With £34,000 Prize Fund
The PGA has added a new Championship to its 2008 schedule, featuring PowerPlay Golf - the exciting new 9-hole format featuring two flags on every green.
By: Andy Hiseman
With a total prize fund of £34,000, the PGA PowerPlay Golf Championship 2008 offers one of the PGA’s most attractive purses. It incorporates three regional qualifying rounds - with 24 golfers from each making it through to a £25,000 grand final.
Peter McEvoy, the former Walker Cup captain and co-founder of PowerPlay Golf, said: "We're delighted to be launching the PGA PowerPlay Golf Championship, which is our first event created specifically for professional golfers.
"The instant risk and reward element of PowerPlay Golf - where golfers have to perform under self-imposed pressure - is something that many competitors won't have experienced before. I congratulate the PGA for embracing this new format and for making this unique addition to their competition calendar."
In PowerPlay Golf, double Stableford points are awarded for birdies or better to the more difficult black 'PowerPlay' flags. Golfers must take exactly three PowerPlays during their first eight holes, with an optional PowerPlay at greater risk on the final hole, but need to choose carefully when to attack the course and when to defend their score.
Competitors in the new event will play both PowerPlay Strokeplay, and also the intense pressure of the innovative PowerPlay Shootout.
The Shootout, which is a TV-friendly format designed to take place in two hours, features an 8-tee shotgun start. Competitors then play 8 holes, walking through the 9th hole. A 'cut' is made after 8 holes, and the top 6 points-scorers at that point compete in a do-or-die shootout over the 9th and final hole, where the choice to attack the difficult black flag, or to play to the safer white flag, will be worth thousands of pounds.
Added McEvoy: "The PowerPlay Shootout format means that players are forced into playing shots under tremendously increased and self-imposed pressure.
“The Championship winner will have to demonstrate an ability to handle this intensity and execute shots under extreme tension. This is what makes PowerPlay Golf so exciting at all levels of the game."
The three regional qualifiers are at:
• Midlands: Bransford GC, Worcs – Tuesday 26th August 2008
• North: Oulton Hall GC, W Yorks – Tuesday 2nd September 2008
• South: Wildwood GC, Surrey – Thursday 11th September 2008
The final is at Frilford Heath Golf Club, Oxfordshire, on Tuesday October 7th 2008.
Jim Croxton, PGA Sponsorship Manager, said: "The PGA is a forward-thinking organisation and the team behind PowerPlay Golf is very innovative. Therefore, the PGA PowerPlay Golf Championship 2008 is a coming together of two organisations that are constantly looking for ways to develop and improve what is offered to golf professionals.
"This Championship boasts an excellent prize fund and we are sure it will appeal to and be well-supported by our members."
Supported by cricket hero and keen golfer, Sir Ian Botham, PowerPlay Golf has become a worldwide hit, with golf courses around the world – including in South Africa, Australia, the USA, Ireland, the Middle East and Scandinavia – setting up for golfers to experience the challenging new format.
And thousands of club golfers are currently taking part in the PowerPlay Golf British Championship 2008, the hunt for the best amateur ‘black flag’ golfer in Britain.
PGA online: http://www.pga.info
Notes to editors: PowerPlay Golf (http://www.powerplay-
Players earn extra points for birdies or better when playing to the Black Flag, which is generally in the more difficult position on the green.
A round of PowerPlay Golf takes half the time of a normal 18-hole round. Golf clubs become Official Venues, and can then offer PowerPlay Golf events for members and guests, green fee golfers, visiting societies and corporate golf customers. Golfers can earn PowerPlay Dollars by playing in both Official Events and in casual games, thus climbing the web-based PowerPlay Golf World Rankings, and can also create custom PowerPlay Leagues for friends and colleagues.
The format has been welcomed by many of the game’s governing bodies around the world. Peter McEvoy OBE, former captain and chairman of selectors of the Walker Cup, is one of the game’s co-creators.
PowerPlay Golf has been described by many as golf’s equivalent to Twenty20 Cricket. It will soon be seen on TV around the world.
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