An impressive line-up including former Ryder Cup player Steve Richardson will battle it out to be crowned the inaugural PGA PowerPlay Golf champion at Frilford Heath on 17th October.
Richardson, who represented Europe in the 1991 Ryder Cup at Kiawah Island, will be among a 72 strong field competing in the two flag risk-reward event which carries a £25,000 prize fund and will include an exciting one-hole shootout for £5,000.
The format, which rewards attacking play with players nominating PowerPlay holes which net double stableford points, has proved a hit with Richardson who is a fan even though he’s only played it once.
“It’s very tactical, you have got to know what you are doing and make sure you play the PowerPlays really well,” he said.
“It helps if you know the course well too because you need to know which holes to attack. It’s all about making birdies and attacking golf rather than being steady so it’s a good format.”
Richardson, who is a popular figure on the corporate golf circuit where he is much in demand especially for his Ryder Cup experiences in the War on the Shore, is relishing the PowerPlay final but won’t be fazed if he makes it into the last-hole shootout.
“It will probably be a bit more intense because it’s a final but it will be fun and I’m sure I won’t be as nervous as I was when I hit that first shot in the Ryder Cup,” he added.
Among those teeing it up at the Oxfordshire course besides Hampshire-based Richardson (Lee-on-the-Solent) will be Mark Mouland, veteran of more than 500 European Tour events, Adam Constable – a two-time winner of the Welsh Young PGA Professional Championship and PGA Cup player Danny Taylor.
Also in the field will be Phil Trow (Hendon) whose victory in the Wildwood qualifier marked a return to form after a botched blood test injection threatened his career when it penetrated a nerve in his arm.
The format puts the onus on players to accumulate bonus points by racking up birdies on the more difficult position black flags instead of the easier white flags.
The field will be whittled down to 16 for an afternoon shotgun start with the leading six after eight holes then assembling for a one-hole shootout for the £5,000 first prize.
Peter McEvoy, co-founder of PowerPlay Golf, said, “We have piloted PowerPlay Golf extensively over the past 18 months with pros, with events as far afield as South Africa and Ireland. Our first UK professional champion will be crowned next week and that is a major landmark in the relatively short lifetime of PowerPlay Golf.
“The feedback we have had from professionals has been overwhelmingly positive. PowerPlay Golf is Twenty20 cricket for golf and the future for a shortened, more exciting version of the game. In 2009, professional PowerPlay Golf will be seen on TV screens around the world and the ‘two flag revolution‘ will move to a new, exciting level.”
PowerPlay Golf www.powerplay-golf.com
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