Jamaica Open back after four-year absence

January 06, 2017
Johnny Bloomfield

International and amateur local golfers are set to compete over four compact days for a total prize purse of US$100,000 at this year's 50th Jamaica Open Golf Championship, which will be held at Half Moon Golf Course in Montego Bay, St James, from January11-14.

The championship will tee off with 40 juniors expected to compete.

Main competition will start the following day with 80 top amateurs and professionals from the United States, the Caribbean, Australia, and locally expected to face off for the first prize of US$19,000.


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The championship will be played as a 54-hole stroke-play event.

International golfers Johnny Bloomfield, a three-time winner; Tom Gillis; Gene Jones; and local star Wesley Brown will feature.

Peter Chin, Jamaica Golf Association president, is expecting the Jamaicans to compete well.

"We expect exciting golf. We have a very good field of professionals and amateurs and we expect some high- level golf," he said in an interview at yesterday's media launch at the Spanish Court Hotel in New Kingston.

The event returns after a four-year break.

The Jamaica Open Championship is one of the longest-running and more prestigious Caribbean tournaments, having started in 1953 at the Constant Spring Golf Club.

Tournament director David Mais says "this is the rebirth of the event," noting that the challenge has been getting corporate sponsorship.

The event will return to the Half Moon Golf Course after previous stagings in 1990, 1991, and 2008. It was last played at that venue in 2012.

Director of Golf of Half Moon Spencer Edwards said his organisation was proud to partner with the Jamaica Golf Association for the 50th staging.

"The Jamaica Open is an opportunity to put Jamaica on the map. We have incredible diversity of golf courses here in Jamaica," he outlined.

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