Thursday, January 5, 2017

European Tour Golf Playing Field for 2017 BMW South African Open, Rory McIlroy playing

The 2017 BMW South African Open golf tournament on the European Tour is taking place this week from January 12-15, 2017, at the Glendower Golf Club located in the Johannesburg suburb of Edenvale, South Africa. Here is a list of the top golfers in the playing field for the 2017 BMW South African Open.

                                             (Photo by Tour Pro Golf Clubs)

The South African Open dates back to 1903. It's been a European Tour event since 1997. Gary Player holds the record for most wins with 13 while Ernie Els holds the record for most wins since the tournament became a European Tour event with 3 (Els has 5 total wins with two before the event was on European Tour). Henrik Stenson won the tournament in 2012.

To date, no American has won the BMW South African Open as a European Tour event. Scott Dunlap finished 2nd here in 1999. Americans Charlie Bolling (1983) and Fred Wadsworth (1989) won the event prior to its European Tour status. Charlie Bolling is playing this week along with fellow Americans Paul Peterson and Peter Uihlein.

Top ranked golfers in the playing field for 2017 BMW South African Open include the #2 ranked golfer in the world Rory McIlroy. Rory McIlroy is playing in the 2017 South African Open as a favor to Ernie Els, who hosts the event, because Ernie Els played in the 2014 Irish Open which Rory McIlroy hosts.

Other top ranked and name golfers in the 2017 BMW South African Open include Andy Sullivan from England, Jaco Van Zyl and Thomas Aiken from South Africa, Kristoffer Broberg from Sweden, and David Horsey and James Morrison both also from England. Golf major winners in the playing field include Sir Nick Faldo, Darren Clarke and Retief Goosen along with Ernie Els. 

The 2017 BMW South African Open does not have the strongest field one has ever seen for a European Tour golf tournament but the presence of Rory McIlroy guarantees that the golf world will be paying attention to one of the world's oldest golf tournaments this week.

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