Sunshine Tour rookie Nikhil Rama to play Investec SA Open

Papwa Sewgolum Class professional Nikhil Rama. Picture: Supplied/ Sunshine Tour

Papwa Sewgolum Class professional Nikhil Rama. Picture: Supplied/ Sunshine Tour

Published Nov 22, 2023


Gauteng-born professional golfer Nikhil Rama, who plays in the Papwa Sewgolum Class for the Sunshine Tour’s transformation, has been invited to the South African Open, which is now known as the Investec Open.

The 22-year-old professional golfer from Johannesburg made the Investec Open through his hard-fought Sunshine Tour, where he placed in the top 10 in six events.

Rama’s highest position for the year was fourth, which he placed in both the Fortress Open in September and the Vodacom Origins of Golf Final in November.

The Investec South African Open is to be played at Blair Atholl Golf and Equestrian Estate in Johannesburg from Thursday, November 30 to Sunday, December 3.

Rama, who turned pro in 2020, opened the Sunshine Tour season tied for tenth at the Zanaco Masters and fifth in the opening tournament at Zebula Golf Estate in Limpopo.

The Bryanston Country Club member said he has put in an enormous amount of work on the course together with his coach and has found a more consistent rhythm with his technique.

“I’m very grateful to receive this invitation. It’s an honour to play in our national Open, which is one of the oldest golf tournaments in the world. I’ve been playing really well, and I’m very excited to compete at Blair Atholl Golf and Equestrian Estate,” said Rama.

“I’ve been working really hard on my technique with my coach, and it’s now becoming more consistent. I can’t thank Investec enough for this invitation at this time. It’s a great reward after playing some good golf this season,” Rama said.

Peta Dixon, head of Sponsorships for Investec, said Rama played a wonderful season and earned his way into the Investec SA Open, which features 156 golfers and a prize money of around $1.5 million (about R27 million), excluding other prizes.

Last year’s winner, Thriston Lawrence, took home around R4.4 million in prize money after dominating the field in the 2022 SA Open.

“With Heinrich Bruiners qualifying by virtue of his rankings, it has now allowed us to invite Nikhil Rama to compete and thereby strengthen the presence of the Papwa Sewgolum Class professionals in the Investec South African Open field. This means even more of our young stars will gain invaluable experience playing against international competition.

“Nikhil has had a wonderful season on the Sunshine Tour so far, and it’s a privilege for us to be able to give him this opportunity to see if he can now take that next step up in his career,” Dixon said.