The Cyprus Showdown will break new ground with a first-of-its-kind format on the European Tour as the 16 leading players and ties after two cuts go head-to-head in a final round shootout.
The European Tour and tournament promoter International Sports Management (ISM) today announced details of the unique format for the inaugural tournament which takes place at Aphrodite Hills from November 5-8.
The second of two consecutive events on the island, the Cyprus Showdown will feature a 105-man field for the first two rounds of strokeplay as normal, with the top 32 players and ties progressing to Saturday’s shootout with their scores reset.
A thrilling Sunday showdown is in prospect with the top 16 players and ties in Saturday’s shootout progressing through to the final day. Once again, their scores will be reset with the remaining players battling it out in a further 18-hole shootout for the €200,000 first prize.
Ben Cowen, the European Tour’s Deputy Chief Operating Officer International, said: “The European Tour has been a pioneer of innovative new formats in recent years so we welcome ISM’s ambition in bringing a new format to the European Tour as we make our first visit to the island of Cyprus.
“Not only do these events help give valuable playing opportunities to our members, but we are able to showcase the nation of Cyprus and the excellent PGA National Cyprus Golf Course at Aphrodite Hills which will host us over the two weeks.
“This exciting format will undoubtedly add to that spotlight and we are confident it be wholly enjoyed by our global television audience, bringing an exciting and dramatic conclusion to our fortnight in Paphos.”
Both events on the Mediterranean island, the Cyprus Open and Cyprus Showdown, will be promoted by ISM, which has a long history of holding tournaments.
It was responsible for every aspect of the British Masters for six years to 2008 and pioneered the eight-man Turkish Airlines World Golf Final in 2012, which featured four of the top five players in the world including Tiger Woods, before setting up the Turkish Airlines Open, which ran for seven years from 2013.
The Cheshire-based management company also promoted Challenge Tour events at the Worsley Marriott and in Northern Ireland, held the Ladies British Masters at Mottram Hall and hosted the Seniors Matchplay and a Seniors tournament at Half Moon in Jamaica.
Andrew Chandler, Chief Executive Officer of ISM, said: “We need to try new things for golf, to try to attract new fans and players, and the Cyprus Showdown should be an exciting way to finish our two weeks in Cyprus.
“With two tournaments back to back in the same place, it should offer something a bit different and I’m sure the players will look forward to it.”
The Cyprus events will continue the European Tour’s strategy of staging tournaments in geographical clusters wherever possible to reduce the onus on international travel.
The two tournaments will be staged at Aphrodite Hills Resort in Paphos with prize funds of €1 million. Both will be played without spectators and will be subject to the European Tour’s comprehensive health strategy and based on Cypriot health authority guidelines.
Andrew Darker, Director of Golf at Aphrodite Hills Resort, added: “We are looking forward to welcoming everyone to our Mediterranean venue here at Aphrodite Hills Resort in Cyprus. It’s going to be a fascinating fortnight of golf, especially with the innovative format, and we are excited to see how the players tackle this new challenge.
“We have loved every minute working with ISM and we are delighted to be a part of the European Tour’s international schedule, and alongside the PGA National Cyprus, we hope there will be more exciting golf to come in our region.”
This will be the first time the European Tour has held events on the island, and Cyprus will be the 49th nation visited by the Tour in its 48-year history.