Ikoyi Club agog as 30 professionals battle in Ultimate Golf Challenge
About 30 top Nigerian golf professionals will today compete in the maiden edition of the Ikoyi Club 1938 Ultimate Golf Challenge at the golf section of the club. The 36-hole winner takes all competition, which is open to the top-30 players on Professional Golfers Association of Nigeria (PGAN) Order of Merit List, will feature 23 year-old Tokunbo Pedro, the only Nigerian male professional golfer, who plays in China, Andrew Odoh, current PGAN order of merit leader and Francis Epe, Ikoyi Club’s course record holder.
The winner of the competition will take home a cash price of N1 million and other consolation prizes.Unveiling the competition during the week, the Chairman of the Organising Committee, Akin Semowo said the aim was to contribute to the development of professional golf in Nigeria.
Semowo lamented that while in developed tours like the United States PGA, European Tour, and even South Africa, where Pro golf is very lucrative with the likes Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy, Phil Mickelson becoming millionaires playing golf, Nigeria’s professional golf was still developing.He said it was in the course of looking for ways to engender the growth of professional golf in Nigeria that they decided to birth the ‘Ultimate Golf Challenge’.
“The thinking from this end was to find out how we can contribute to the development of pro golf in Nigeria. To see how we can encourage professional golfers to take their job seriously and to see how we can help this group of athletes become very competitive. That is one of the reasons for putting ultimate golf challenge together,” he said.
Semowo added that with the competition, the club wanted to get more people to go abroad to play golf, just as he encouraged the pros to aspire to greater things, which is part of why the event is been organised.
Speaking on his expectations at the competition, Pedro said: “I try to enjoy the game whenever I compete and I always prepare while practicing hard. “You cannot control yourself or what people do; you can only control your game. I hope to win this competition regardless of being the youngest.”