THE Zambia Sugar Open Golf tournament local organising committee (LOC) has raised US$500, 000 of the US$750, 000 targeted budget to successfully host the event that tees off on April 30 to May 3 at the Lusaka Golf Club.
At a media briefing in Lusaka yesterday, LOC chairperson Robert Penney said that the tournament has attracted 180 professional golfers but that the number will be trimmed to 144.
Penny said among the 144 golfers to make the final entry include 20 Zambian golfers of which 10 are professionals and 10 amateurs.
The prize money for the 2015 Zambia Sugar Open is R1.5 million from the R1.2 million in the past three years.
“The organisation of this tournament is proceeding well with much support from many sponsors and we have raised US$500, 000 towards the event. I am hopeful that the targeted budget will be met,” he said.
Among the notables participating in the tournament are defending champion from South Africa Lyle Rowe, Zambia’s Patrick Mwendapole and Bube Samutela.
He said the tournament will tee off with a Lusaka Golf club sponsored Pro-Am on April 28 and 29.
Penny said Madalisto Muthiya is the only Zambian that has chances of winning the Zambian Open. He however attributed the under-performance of Zambian golfers at international tournaments to lack of exposure and competition.
“To be honest in Zambia only Madalisto can win the Zambian Open because he is the only one that has been exposed, he has participated on the European tour,” he said.
Penny said there was need for the establishment of golf academies in Zambia to help improve the skills of golfers.