The 2018 SP PNG Golf Open will be staged for the third time on the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia when it is hosted by the Royal Port Moresby Golf Club from 26-29 April 2018.

The 24th edition of the tournament, which first began as a pro-am, sees SP Brewery extend their support as naming rights sponsor of the AU$145,000 event.

“SP Brewery has had a long and successful history of supporting both grassroots and elite sport in Papua New Guinea and as the official beer of sport in PNG, I am delighted to announce that this year’s tournament will be proudly known as the SP PNG Golf Open,” said South Pacific Brewery’s Managing Director, Stan Joyce.

“This prestigious event offers not only lucrative prize money for the golfing Professionals, but great future opportunities on the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia, and a very unique golfing event experience in PNG. 

“We are very excited and looking forward to being part of our 12th SP PNG Golf Open.”

The 2017 SP PNG Golf Open went right down to the wire with Queensland’s Cory Crawford defeating Brett Rankin in a six hole playoff to claim his first win on the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia.

Crawford checked in as clubhouse leader after 72 holes at 10-under par and faced an agonising wait for Rankin, who was also 10-under, to finish his round in the group behind him.

Rankin had the chance to seal victory in regulation but was only able to make par on the 18th, forcing a playoff for the second year in a row at Royal Port Moresby Golf Club.

The pair could not be separated through five playoff holes on the par-3 18th, both making par on all attempts.

On their sixth trip, both Crawford and Rankin hit their tee shot approximately 40 feet from the flag. Rankin would eventually bogey the hole and Crawford made par for his first Professional victory.

“It definitely meant a lot considering the rough couple of years I have had out there so it was good to get it all together during that week and obviously to get the win was fantastic,” said Crawford, who has full exemption on the ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia until the end of 2018 courtesy of winning the 2017 SP PNG Golf Open.

The 2018 SP PNG Golf Open will also have its first Ambassador, with dual South Pacific Games Gold Medallist Kristine Seko accepting the prestigious honour.