Boost for professional golfers as CI Challenge nears return

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THE PGA Channel Islands Challenge Pro-Am is set to return for the first time since 2019.

The western links of La Moye will host the tournament on 27 September, with the second round due to take place the following day at Royal Jersey. Many local and mainland golfers are expected to participate.

The event began in 2012 as Alex Mollin realised the need to host a tournament in which Jersey-based professional golfers could compete in.

Prior to its inception, any professional on the Island had to travel to the UK to compete.

At present, the event serves as the only PGA tournament in the Channel Islands and provides the local pros with the rare chance to compete against each other, as well as against any mainland golfers who make the trip south.

Mollin said: ‘I think it’s been really appreciated, especially people coming through their training.

‘As part of your PGA course, you must compete in 21 events over the three years, so to offer this chance of a local tournament takes some of the strain off the local pros who will have to travel to make up the rest of the events.

‘I for one found it very tough to play in the required amount of tournaments.

‘Most of the male professionals were able to use local Tuesday League competitions to go towards the figure, but as a female, that opportunity wasn’t there for me and made life very difficult.’

One Islander who has been an avid supporter of the event is Duncan Ellis, who is a qualified professional himself with PGA South Africa.

Now the managing director of tournament sponsors Rock Accounting, his love for golf continues.

Ellis said: ‘We at Rock Accounting are delighted to be sponsoring the 2022 PGA Channel Islands Challenge and are very much looking forward to the upcoming Pro-Am event.

‘When Alex [Mollin] and Sam [Smith] from the PGA got in touch to see whether we would be interested, we didn’t need too much convincing.

‘Having been a member of the PGA for the past 13 years, this is a great opportunity for us to get behind the event and an organisation that continues to support the growth of the game.

‘The local PGA professionals do not get the chance to play too much competitive golf in the Channel Islands and this will hopefully give them that and an opportunity to enjoy the Pro-Am format after a few years’ break.’

Anyone who is interested in taking part, professional or amateur, is asked to contact Alex Mollin on 07797 718007 for more information.

The closing date for entries is 28 August.

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