The PGA has commissioned a silver golf ball perched on a silver tee and plinth as a thank you to the King of Bahrain who has agreed to open the gates of his private course in Safriya to stage next month’s grand final of the Gulf Air International Pro-Captain Challenge, supported by BMW (24-25 February).
The noble gesture by King Hamad came after the proposed final at Riffa Golf Club in May was ruled out due to redevelopment work meaning the nine pairs of finalists would have had to play in searing temperatures approaching 50 degrees C.
The silver ball, which will have the PGA initials engraved in it, was created by Birmingham-based jewellers Samuel Pitt Ltd with a little help from PGA chief executive Sandy Jones.
“It was a fairly simple process to make the gift, but it was an intriguing design by Sandy,” said Robert Pitt, great grandson of Samuel Pitt, who founded the jewellers in 1865. “There is an actual golf ball inside. We took the ball and dipped it into a vat of silver which created a perfect golf ball shape complete with the dimples.”
This is not the first time Pitt has worked wonders for the PGA – he has previously worked on many trophies, including the Ryder Cup. He also repaired the famous dent in the lid of the Llandudno Trophy, which is contested biennially by Great Britain & Ireland and America’s PGA Cup teams.
The lid sustained damage after it was blown off the Alliss family mantelpiece by a stray German bomb during the Second World War.
Pitt’s handiwork is held in high regard by the PGA and all those who have been lucky enough to be awarded their trophies or gifts.
Pitt also manufactures the diamond-encrusted cufflinks presented to recipients of the PGA Special Recognition Award including golfing legends as Seve Ballesteros and Jose Maria Olazabal.
“I have been doing bits for the PGA since the early 1990s,” added Pitt. “Sandy has often designed what I‘ve been asked to make and he’s getting quite a dab hand at it now.”
Jones commented, “Rob is very generous to give me any credit for the design of our presentation pieces.”