Standard Bank Pro-Am Series returns to St Francis Links

Professional women’s golf returns to Eastern Cape as series goes to St Francis Links for the fifth event of this eight-tournament series, on 22 September.
The series is making its debut in the province even though it already has a footprint in the way of the Standard Bank Golf Development Programme that’s currently underway at East London Golf Club.
“This series is more than just about golf,” added Jenny Havenga of Lifestyle Golf, Founder, and promoter of the series. “It’s about building the nation, it’s about connecting professionals with corporate; it’s about making history, but mostly, it’s about bringing golf to women of all ages.
“Our sponsors and partners recognise that we are passionate about the development of female golfers from a young age and the investments they have made into this are a testimony to this fact. The Eastern Cape is inundated with talent and players such as Zethu Myeki, Yolanda Duma and her sister Siviwe are some of the players this province has produced.
“We want to unearth more talent and thanks to Standard Bank, now we have a fully running programme here to help us identify and nurture that talent,” says Barbara Pestana, executive director of the Women’s Professional Golf Association (the WPGA). “In that regard, we also thank the WPGA for their professional work and the progress we are seeing so far.
“The current home of South Africa’s second-oldest golf tournament, the PGA Championship, marks the third of four Standard Bank Pro-Am events to be played in a province outside of Gauteng, an achievement that speaks to the growth of the series since it was launched in 2020.
“We are delighted to finally stage a professional tournament in the province and especially here at St Francis.
“This province is rich with history and tradition and to bring the Standard Bank Pro-Am tournament here speaks to our shared objective of taking the sport to as many women as possible. It also augurs well with our development agenda and the national footprint. We are nearing the end of level two of our development programme for girls in the province and we hope that bringing a professional event here will inspire more women and young girls to want to be involved in golf, in one capacity or another.”
The Standard Bank Pro-Am series along with the development programme is initiated by Lifestyle Golf in collaboration with the Women’s Professional Golf Association (WPGA) and is now in its second year. It is aimed at growing women’s golf on all levels and creating opportunities for them to play professionally throughout the year, which will enable them to hone their skills further while earning some money in the process.
“At Standard Bank, we believe that growth in women’s golf has evolved tremendously and already showcases some of the highest talent on offer in South Africa,” says Unathi Maqalekane, Provincial Executive Head – Client Coverage Eastern Cape at Standard Bank South Africa.
This is a sport where commitment, perseverance and the right opportunities matter more than who is stronger or faster. We know that it should be about the quality of the golf. That is why we are backing South African women’s golf and giving them more platforms to succeed because we believe that: ‘Great golf, is great golf’ regardless of who is playing.”

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