Three-time champion Lee Westwood has signed up to defend his title in the Nedbank Golf Challenge hosted by Gary Player at Sun City for the penultimate Rolex Series event of 2019 from 14-17 November.
Westwood’s emotional three-stroke victory over Sergio Garcia in 2018 made him the first European golfer in the history of ‘Africa’s Major’ to win this tournament three times following back-to-back wins in 2010 and 2011.
The Englishman joined Ernie Els, Nick Price and David Frost as the only golfers to have ever won the event three times.
Westwood’s win last year – in which he saw off Sergio Garcia and Louis Oosthuizen down the stretch – resulted in the most successful edition of the tournament since it became a full European Tour event, with an overall attendance of 72,000 fans including over 20,000 each day on the weekend alone.
Another boost for local golf was the confirmation that the partnership between Nedbank, the European Tour and Sun International has been renewed until 2021.
The 2019 NGC will entrench its status as one of world golf’s elite tournaments with an increase in both the first-place prize money and Race to Dubai points.
The winner of the 2019 Nedbank Golf Challenge will take home $2.5 million, an increase on the $1.25m won by Westwood last year.
The overall prize fund remains at $7.5m, with the balance of the 63-player field from second place onwards playing for a share of $5m.
This year’s tournament also offers an increased haul of Race to Dubai points from 7,500 to 10,000, placing it above what the World Golf Championship tournaments offer.