The Athena announces 5 Invitees and return of key commercial partners
SANDY GOLF LINKS, Melbourne, Victoria: The WPGA Tour announce the first 5 invitees for the Athena 2022 and the return of key commercial partners.
The Athena, a compact two-day event concept, will be played at newly re-designed Sandy Golf Links on Melbourne’s famous sandbelt on the 26th and 27th of February 2022, and will be broadcast live on Fox Sports / Kayo and, in a newly confirmed deal today, via Sky in New Zealand from 12:30pm to 4:30pm each day (AEDT).
Today we announce 5 (of the 12) players who have accepted invitations to compete in the 2022 Athena:
Steph Bunque, a returning player from the inaugural Athena says:
“I’m super excited to have been invited to take part in the Athena for its second year in a row. To be able to participate in an event which showcases us women and encourages difference and progression in this sport is something I’m definitely proud to be a part of!”
Steph’s 2021 Athena Profile is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cC8y8zAsCaw&t=6s
Amelia Garvey is the first player to be invited from New Zealand after a successful collaboration effort by WPGA Tour and Golf NZ for this summer’s event.
This collaboration has been proudly supported with an investment from Sky to broadcast the event LIVE.
Adam Crothers, Sky’s Head of Sport Partnerships says: “We’re really excited to share The Athena on Sky, the home of golf in Aotearoa New Zealand, and we’re even more delighted talented Kiwi golfer Amelia Garvey is taking part in 2022. The Athena is an innovative and exciting format which will encourage more girls and young women into the sport. Blending skills development with match play and opening the tournament up through digital apps is unique and will appeal to a wide range of young and aspiring women golfers.
“The Athena will be appointment viewing alongside an impressive slate of other women’s sport on Sky in early 2022. We’re convinced ‘if you see it, you know you can be it’. We’ll continue to look for ways to showcase premium women’s sport.”
It is with great excitement that we also welcome back 2 returning commercial partners for the Athena 2022, adidas Golf and Callaway.
Both partners contributed significantly to the concept launch and success of The Athena in 2021.
“Commercial partners who are intrinsically aligned to the success and professional presentation of the next generation of extraordinary female talent in our game are extremely important” says Karen Lunn, WPGA Tour CEO. “We see adidas and Callaway as long-term partners in the Athena and are very thankful they have increased their investment in the Athena to ensure these underrepresented athletes feel supported on and off the course.”
Darryn Lowe, General Manager of adidas Golf Pacific said “adidas Golf are extremely excited and proud to extend our relationship with The Athena for 2022. Being progressive and Inclusive is a major focus at adidas and with a dedicated focus on the female athlete and consumer in 2022, The Athena is the perfect platform for us to showcase the adidas Golf brand and provide support to the best of the best when it comes to female golfers across Pacific. We absolutely love everything that The Athena is about and look forward to working closely with WPGA Tour and other partners to make this another major success.”
Matt Meredith, Managing Director of Callaway South Pacific said “Callaway Golf are truly proud to be supporting The Athena again in February 2022. Callaway has a long history of supporting Women’s Golf and this truly revolutionary event is something we see as a key component in the growth of Elite Golf in Australia. It is an amazing opportunity for future female stars to compete on the big stage. The newly renovated Sandy Links which also happens to be the new home of all three major Golf governing bodies provides a great synergy for the event. We look forward to even more innovation at the 2022 Athena and thank the WPGA for continuing to welcome Callaway into their family.”
The PGA of Australia continues to support the Athena as another significant illustration of the collaboration between the PGA of Australasia and the WPGA Tour of Australasia. Golf Australia also proudly support the Athena concept.
Key points for The Athena 2022:
The Athena is a concept developed by Evolve Sports Group operated by the WPGA Tour of Australasia and in 2022 will be held at the iconic sandbelt location of Sandy Golf Links supported by Royal Melbourne Golf Club.
The Athena brings attention to the underrepresented but emerging stars of women’s golf, with the players individually selected by the WPGA Tour as the best of our many talented young stars.
The Athena is designed to test each player’s skills in challenging situations, or “clutch shots”, which they would expect when competing against the best players in the world. The concept is developed to entertain sports fans, not just golf fans.
On the first day – The Golf Challenge Day – the 12 invitees will each have one shot at 9 challenges. For example, a bunker shot, longest drive or “trouble shot”. A leaderboard that runs through the day will determine the best 8 players at the end of the Golf Challenge Day. Those 8 will continue to Day 2 - the Playoffs - where a head-to-head match play format takes place over quarter-finals, semi-finals and a final, and an Athena Champion is crowned. It is fast-paced, “clutch shot” based, and prepares our best young golfers in the country for a career in professional golf under pressure. Illustration of the Athena 2022 format here: https://theathena.wpga.org.au/athena_program.html
The WPGA Tour
Established in 1972, the WPGA Tour of Australasia, previously known as The ALPG Tour is one of seven major international women’s golf tours recognised by the Rolex World Rankings. This member-based organisation has seen significant growth in membership over the past decade and now has a current membership of over 300, with a large percentage of those being international touring professionals.
Phone: +61 477 021 091
More information @ www.athena.golf