The organising committee for New Zealand’s premier golfing event, which due to the Covid-19 Pandemic was not held in 2021, is fully committed to holding the New Zealand Open in 2022 and are determined to do everything possible to stage the tournament and provide a much-needed boost to Queenstown and the greater Otago region, given the severe economic impacts of the pandemic.
In addition, the tournament provides a significant platform to promote tourism to New Zealand, and this is something that will be desperately needed once international borders re-open.
The New Zealand Open has been placed upon the Government Approved event list, and while it is possible for some international players to attend, the challenge faced is the need for players to self-isolate for seven days upon arrival without access to practice facilities.
“We believe that it will be very difficult to convince foreign national professionals to take an extra week out of their playing schedule, particularly at a time when other tournaments around the world are getting back to a more normal situation,” said Tournament Chairman Mr John Hart.
“In all probability, our only option will be to run a tournament that mainly features Kiwi’s, and we are delighted that a number of New Zealand’s leading professionals, including Ryan Fox, Mike Hendry, Josh Geary and others have signalled their support for the event, regardless of format,” said Mr Hart.
“Our process will now be to consult with our tour partners, international players, amateurs, sponsors and other key funding agencies to ascertain what might be possible, and indeed, if we are able to run a financially viable and high quality event” concluded Mr Hart.
A further announcement on the future of the 102nd New Zealand Open and its playing format will be made within the next few weeks.
The New Zealand Open, is scheduled to be played between March 31 and April 3, 2022 across 36 holes at Millbrook Resort. The tournament will be broadcast by Sky Sport in New Zealand and through various networks internationally, showcasing the best of Queenstown and New Zealand to the world.