Ogilvy set to launch new pro tournament in Melbourne

Geoff Ogilvy has surprised the golfing world with news that he, along with golf course architect Mike Clayton, is launching a new tournament to be known as the Sandbelt Invitational.

The eight-time PGA Tour winner told Melbourne’s 10 News First that the inaugural event will be played across four courses – Royal Melbourne, Kingston Heath, Yarra Yarra and Peninsula Kingswood Country Golf Club – and mirroring the highly-successful Vic Open and TPS Series, will feature a mix of men and women including both amateurs and professionals.

Geoff Ogilvy Geoff Ogilvy (Credit: PGA Tour)

“We called a few courses and they were almost unanimously instantaneously, ‘yes, were in’,” Ogilvy told 10 News First’s Henry Peters.

“The men and women thing, I think golf’s always been a bit too segregated. I think we need to get everyone back into the same sort of pile.”

“These kids need something to play in,” added former player Mike Clayton, a six-time winner on the Australasian PGA Tour.

“They’re still playing football and cricket but there’s a whole bunch of really good players that have had nothing to play in for almost two years.”

The impetus for the launch of the new tournament was the cancellation of both the men’s and women’s Australian Open tournaments. However, Ogilvy plans to build the new event to a level where it can become a permanent fixture on the Aussie golfing calendar and rival the biggest tournaments of the golfing summer.

The Sandbelt Invitational is set to tee off from December 20th to 23rd.