DIG Foundation hopes to unearth black golf talent
Not many black golfers have managed to make the breakthrough into the top tours be around the world. Tiger Woods, the only black golfer to win a major, has been the face of the game for nearly two decades, but he is in more ways than one, one in a million. And since his fall from grace, we have struggled to find the next black golf champion.
The situation is no different in South Africa where there is an alarmingly low number of black golfers making their mark on the Sunshine Tour, European Tour and even less in America. Just finding a black golfer on top of local leaderboards is a challenge on its own.While some such as James Kamte have featured from time to time, realistically we do not have many black household names in the sport.
There are many reasons for this.Opportunity and financial support are just two that keep coming up in conversations.The DIG Foundation wishes to give black golfers an opportunity to hone their skills competitively while they plan for that ‘big break’.
Earlier this year, and with the support from the Sunshine Tour, the DIG Foundation set in motion plans to bridge a few gaps and provide the necessary opportunities to those knocking on the door.
The DIG Tour which is the brainchild of Songezo Sonamzi is aimed at preparing these talents so they can hold their own on the big stage and when the opportunity arises.
On Tuesday some of golfers were in action at DIG Observatory Open at Observatory Golf Course. Thabang Simon who is the man to beat at the moment, shot a 67 to celebrate his third victory of the season. With a vast knowledge of the layout, he admitted to having an advantage over the field.“You know I grew up here. Me and Songs we playing here like two or three times a week, and of course we know the course, that is the thing,” said Simon.
As a golfer struggling to break onto full-time tours, he feels this project although still in its infancy could be what he and others need not only to get to the top, but to stay there.