NEW DELHI: Cricket legend Kapil Dev on Monday announced 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 play along with amateurs, corporates and celebrity golfers.
The tournament, slated to be played from September 27-30, will be the first-ever full-field PGTI event to be played at the Gary Player-designed Course of the DLF Golf and Country Club in Gurugram.
The tournament will carry total prize money of Rs 1 crore and will feature 126 professional golfers, to begin with. After two days, the top 50 players and ties will advance to the final rounds.
The tournament will give amateur teams, consisting of golfers, celebrities and corporate leaders, a chance to partner with the pros in Rounds 3 and 4 to compete for separate team prizes. This gives club golfers a unique opportunity to experience what the pro golfers go through in the final two days of a tournament, the organisers said in a release on Monday.
Making the announcement, Kapil Dev said, "I am really excited about the tournament and would like to thank Vishesh Chandiok for sharing my vision of creating a truly landmark event in India's golfing history. I also extend my gratitude to DLF for agreeing to host the event. The event has been created keeping in mind other global standout events, such as the Annual Pebble Beach Pro-Am on the US PGA Tour and the European Tour's Dunhill Championship at St. Andrews, the home of golf."
Kapil Dev, who captained India to World Cup glory in 1983, is a board member of the PGTI and an active ambassador for the development of golf in the country.
Speaking at the launch, Vishesh C. Chandiok, CEO, Grant Thornton Bharat, said, "This format has been tried and proven for several years on the PGA and European Tours to be a success.
"It promotes engagement between fans and the players -- because golf allows this pro-am format and we intend to use this to strengthen interest in professional golf in India," Chandiok, added.
Uttam Singh Mundy, CEO, PGTI, said, "We at the PGTI are excited about adding 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 event partners for contributing to the growth of Indian professional golf."