The 2023-24 European tour season kicks off in Australia with the Fortinet Australian PGA Championship and in South Africa with the Joburg Open.
Fortinet Australian PGA Championship in Brisbane, Australia
The 2023-24 European tour season began with the Fortinet Australian PGA Championship at the Royal Queensland GC in Brisbane, Australia. The event featured a prize money of $2 million Australian dollars, with a winner’s share of $370,000 Australian dollars. The defending champion, Cameron Smith, is pursuing his fourth Australian PGA title, and notable LIV Golf players like Marc Leishman, Joaquin Niemann, and Mito Pereira were also in the field. Additionally, Adrian Meronk of Poland, who recently secured a PGA Tour card for 2024, participated in the tournament. The top 50 players at the end of the year will receive invitations to the Masters, adding further significance to the event. The tournament, dating back to 1929, marked the start of the European tour season and is part of the biggest two-week swing through Australia.
Joburg Open in Johannesburg, South Africa
In Johannesburg, South Africa, the 2023-24 European tour season also commenced with the Joburg Open at the Houghton GC. The tournament, co-sanctioned by the European tour and Sunshine Tour, featured a prize money of 17.5 million rand, with a winner’s share of 332,500 rand. Players not exempt for the British Open at Royal Troon had an opportunity to secure a spot through this event. South African LIV Golf players, including Charl Schwartzel, Branden Grace, and Dean Burmester, participated in the tournament, along with Dylan Frittelli, who earned a spot from the European tour as part of the five spots offered to players finishing between No. 126 and No. 200 in the FedEx Cup on the PGA Tour. The Joburg Open, a longstanding event since 2007, holds a significant place in the European tour schedule. Additionally, players had the chance to earn eligibility for a PGA Tour card through the Race to Dubai ranking, adding to the competitive nature of the tournament.
Upcoming Tournaments and Tour Summary
The RSM Classic concluded last week with Ludvig Aberg emerging as the winner. The PGA Tour is now heading towards the end of the season, with Viktor Hovland securing the FedEx Cup championship. On the LPGA Tour, Amy Yang claimed victory at the CME Group Tour Championship. The focus is now shifting towards the end of the season for both the PGA and LPGA Tours. Additionally, various other tours, including the Japan Golf Tour, the Ladies European Tour, and the Japan LPGA, have their own upcoming tournaments and defending champions, adding to the global landscape of professional golf.