The European Tour over the weekend unveiled GolfSixes, a revolutionary and novel short form of the game which further illustrates the Tour’s desire to embrace innovation and originality in professional golf.
The inaugural GolfSixes event – featuring a prize fund of €1m – will take place at the Centurion Club (pictured) in St Albans, Herts, on May 6-7.
The event will feature two-man teams from 16 different nations, each nation being represented by its leading ranked and available European Tour member from the 2017 Exemption Category List who will be joined by a compatriot of his choosing from the ET.
The first day’s play will see the teams split into four groups of four before the top two teams from each group progress to the knockout stages – the quarter-finals, the semi-finals, a 3rd/4th place play-off match and the final – all of which will be contested on the Sunday.
In the group stages, three points will be given for winning a match with one point given for a draw while the matches themselves will be played in a greensomes match play format. Both days’ play will be shown live on Sky Sports.
Keith Pelley, ET Chief Executive, said: “We have said for some time that golf needs to modernise and introducing innovative new formats is a major part of achieving that aim.
“We want to broaden the appeal of our sport to the millennial demographic and I think this format will do that, not only through the quick and exiting style of play, but also with the interactive digital experience fans will enjoy on site and the innovative television coverage people will enjoy at home.”
Players will be encouraged to interact with the fans during play and in the intervals between their matches, including taking part in Q&A sessions in the fan zone, while live streaming on social media will further enhance the spectators’ experience and maximise reach.
The interactive digital fan experience will feature polls, user generated content and unique social media content while the innovative broadcast items will include POV cameras, caddie cams, unique camera angles and on-course player interviews.
“We are also delighted to have brought a country versus country element to the fore. There is no question that the greatest atmosphere in golf comes every two years at the Ryder Cup and we are keen to try and emulate that national fervour in this format.”