Nick Gordon
2 minute read
26 Oct 2013
7:00 am

Sunshine Tour ‘amazing brand’

Nick Gordon

It's no secret that those responsible for running sport in South Africa haven't exactly covered themselves in glory over the years.

Divan Gerber during day 3 of the Sunshine Big Easy Tour Championship at Ebotse Links Golf Estate on October 25, 2013 in Johannesburg, South Africa.

There have been stories of political in-fighting and personal agendas that have done more harm than good, not only to the sportsmen and women who make a living from their respective codes, but also the sports themselves.

But one of the shining lights has been the Sunshine Tour and now the golfing body is looking to expand horizons and offer assistance to allow the women’s side of the game to experience a rebirth and grow into a successful entity.

The big news this week was that the Women’s Professional Golf Association (WPGA) had managed to bring the Sunshine Ladies Tour to life with the advent of the Chase to the Investec Cup and it’s an initiative that chairman Margie Whitehouse says owes a lot to the input of the Sunshine Tour.

“The Sunshine Tour has been fantastic. They’re giving us a real kick-start into the world of women’s golf. We’ve got full use of their structures and systems and if we had had to start from scratch this wouldn’t have been possible,” Whitehouse said.

The secret to success would appear to be the credibility of the organisation and executive director Selwyn Nathan and the rest of his team have worked hard to ensure that their brand remains a shining light.

It’s a model that Whitehouse wholly supports, so much so that she has roped Nathan in as an adviser to the WPGA board.

“The Sunshine Tour is an amazing brand. It’s incredibly successful one of the most successful tours in the world at the moment,” Whitehouse said before reflecting on the major turnaround that has resulted in a revival of the women’s game in the country.

“We looked at reformulating our whole strategy, getting good corporate governance and the basic disciplines in place,” said Whitehouse.

“We made sure that there was a board of directors purely in a pro bono situation just to drive the business forward. We started working to build ladies’ professional golf going forward within this structure,” she added.