Home » NSW Open hits new heights with record $800,000 prize purse – Australian Golf Digest

NSW Open hits new heights with record $800,000 prize purse – Australian Golf Digest

NSW Open hits new heights with record 0,000 prize purse – Australian Golf Digest

The 2024 NSW Open is set to shine when it heads to the magnificent Murray Downs Golf & Country Club in the state’s south-west from November 14 to 17, with Australia’s best golfers competing for a record-setting purse of $800 000.

Last held in March 2023, the NSW Open will also return to the spring/summer window for the first time in five years.

“This year’s NSW Open presents a fantastic opportunity for us to ensure the tournament maintains its standing as the most prestigious state championship on the Australian golf calendar,” said Stuart Fraser, chief executive of Golf NSW.

“Rich River proved to be a fabulous venue for last year’s championship, and the crowds we saw throughout the week proved how thirsty the public are for elite tournament golf. We know Murray Downs will be just as successful,” Fraser added.

Defending champion, Victoria’s David Micheluzzi confirmed his status as one of the sport’s rising stars with his victory at Rich River. The win propelled him to the 2023 Order of Merit crown and a DP World Tour Card for 2024, where he currently leads the BMW International Open after round one in Germany.

With the NSW Open returning to a pivotal date on the calendar, this year’s champion could easily end up following in the footsteps of the Victorian Open.

PGA of Australia chief executive Gavin Kirkman said the NSW Open would be a major highlight of the 2024-2025 Challenger PGA Tour of Australasia.

“The NSW Open has a wonderful history with an outstanding list of past champions, and we’re looking forward to seeing who adds their name to the trophy at Murray Downs, one of the wonderful courses we have in our regional areas,” Kirkman said.

“It will kick off three huge weeks for our Tour, leading into the BMW Australian PGA Championship and the ISPS Handa Australian Open.

“We are very appreciative of the NSW Government and Golf NSW’s outstanding ongoing support of our tour and professional golf in general as we continue to grow the game across our region.”

Tournament Facts:

Host Venue: Murray Downs Golf & Country Club

Dates: November 14-17, 2024

Prize Fund: $800,000 (minimum)

Website: nswopen.com
 

The Venue:

Designed by Ted Parslow and opened in 1991, Murray Downs Golf & Country Club is one of Australia’s leading golf courses. The 18-hole championship par 72 layout is a striking contrast to the Mallee plains surrounding it. It has well-manicured fairways and large undulating greens framed by magnificent river gums. The course has several great holes, including the signature fifth, a long water carries to a well-guarded green.

History:

The NSW Open has a rich history stretching back to 1931, pre-dating the iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge. First held at Manly Golf Club, the tournament was initially played as a ‘close’ format championship, meaning it was open only to residents of New South Wales. Tom Howard, Sam Richardson and Charlie Gray finished in a three-way tie in the inaugural event, with Charlie Gray lifting the title after a 36-hole playoff. The championship grabbed the NSW public’s attention during the Great Depression when many had little to look forward to other than cheering on our sporting heroes. It quickly evolved into the tournament ‘They All Wanted to Play’ and soon became one of the big three tournaments, alongside the Australian Open and the Australian PGA Championship.

Legends

The list of players crowned NSW Open champion is impressive and includes some of the greatest names in Australian golf, such as World Golf Hall of Fame inductees Kel Nagle, Greg Norman, and Peter Thomson. Other names to lift the Kel Nagle Cup include Norman Von Nida, Frank Phillips, Ian Baker-Finch, Ted Ball, Billy Dunk, Peter Lonard, Jack Newton, Peter O’Malley, Craig Parry, Bob Shearer, and Ian Stanley. Six amateurs, including five-time champion Jim Ferrier, Owen Beldham, Tony Gresham, Rick Kulacz, Ben Eccles and Harrison Crowe, are also on the list of champions.

Notable Past Champions
1976, ’79 Jack Newton
1981 Bill Rogers
1984 Ian Baker-Finch
1978, ’83, ’86, ’88 Greg Norman
1987, ’92 Craig Parry
2004 Peter Lonard
2015 Ben Eccles (a)
2017 Jason Scrivener
2018 Jake McLeod
2019 Josh Younger
2021 Bryden MacPherson
2022 Harrison Crowe (a)
2023 David Micheluzzi