South African Open (golf)
|Location||Ekurhuleni, South Africa|
|Course(s)||Glendower Golf Club|
|Length||7,564 yards (6,917 m)|
|Prize fund||R 15,000,000|
|Tournament record score|
|Aggregate||264 Ernie Els (2006)|
|To par||−24 (as above)|
The South African Open Championship is one of the oldest national open golf championships in the world, and is one of the principal tournaments on the Sunshine Tour. Since 1997 it has also been co-sanctioned by the European Tour. As the flagship event on the Sunshine Tour, the tournament also receives special status from the Official World Golf Ranking, with the winner being guaranteed a minimum of 32 points regardless of the strength of the field.
The first formal event was organised in 1903, following a series of exhibition matches that had been held over the preceding ten years. The championship was initially contested over just 36 holes until 1908, when it was extended to become a 72 hole tournament. Although non-whites had played in the South African Open before, most notably when Papwa Sewgolum finished second in 1963, it was not until 1972 that black golfers were allowed to compete.
Gary Player has been the most successful player in the tournament's history, with 13 victories over four decades between 1956 and 1981. Bobby Locke won nine titles, Sid Brews won eight titles, and George Fotheringham won the event five times.
- 1.^ Not an official record score because the 4th hole was unplayable during the 3rd and 4th rounds due to heavy rain. For scoring purposes, all players were deemed to have recorded a par for the hole.
- 2.^ Two events in 2005 due to rescheduling from January to December.
- 3.^ No event in 2014 due to rescheduling from November to January.
Prior to European Tour co-sanctioning
1 Tournament held in December 1993 (1994 season)
Tournament held over 36 holes prior to 1908
Eighteen men have won this tournament more than once through 2016.
|13||Gary Player||South Africa||1956, 1960, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1972, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1979, 1981|
|9||Bobby Locke||South Africa||1935, 1937, 1938, 1939, 1940, 1946, 1950, 1951, 1955|
|8||Sid Brews||South Africa||1925, 1927, 1930, 1931, 1933, 1934, 1949, 1952|
|5||George Fotheringham||Scotland||1908, 1910, 1911, 1912, 1914|
|5||Ernie Els||South Africa||1992, 1996, 1998, 2006, 2010|
|4||Laurie Waters||South Africa||1903, 1904, 1907, 1920|
|4||Jock Brews||South Africa||1921, 1923, 1926, 1928|
|2||Arthur Gray||England||1905, 1906|
|2||Harold Henning||South Africa||1957, 1962|
|2||Retief Waltman||South Africa||1961, 1963|
|2||Bobby Cole||South Africa||1974, 1980|
|2||Wayne Westner||South Africa||1988, 1991|
|2||Tony Johnstone||Zimbabwe||1984, 1993 (Dec)|
|2||David Frost||South Africa||1986, 1999|
|2||Mark McNulty||Zimbabwe||1987, 2001|
|2||Trevor Immelman||South Africa||2003, 2004|
|2||Tim Clark||South Africa||2002, 2005 (Jan)|
|2||Retief Goosen||South Africa||1995, 2005 (Dec)|
- "How the System Works". Official World Golf Ranking. 1 January 2007. Retrieved 2008-11-18.
- "South African Open Championship History and Highlights". South African Open Championship. Retrieved 2008-11-18.