Perth, Australia: Australia continues to be at the cutting edge of innovation in golf with the introduction of PGA Open Mic during the Fox Sports broadcast of the ISPS Handa World Super 6 Perth.
Driven by the PGA of Australia and Fox Sports, this initiative will see ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia players interact live with the commentary team as they play their round.
Imagine gaining an insight into a player’s thoughts as he walks off the tee and down the fairway to his ball or before he tees off on a hole during the match play section of the tournament, gaining an understanding of his strategy and approach.
This will be possible during the ISPS Handa World Super 6 Perth, an event tri-sanctioned by the European Tour, ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia, and Asian Tour, as players are interviewed by Fox Sports presenter Warren Smith, former pro and Fox Sports golf analyst Paul Gow.
“Golf needs to continue to innovate to stay relevant in the modern market. Fans increasingly want more insight into the game, watching a player hit a superb shot is no longer enough. We now want to know the thought process behind that shot,” said Gavin Kirkman, Chief Executive Officer of the PGA of Australia which owns the ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia.
“PGA Open Mic will allow fans an inside the ropes experience, from the comfort of their lounge room that they have never before experienced in golf. This is the first time this has ever been done in golf in Australia.
“This type of content has seen the broadcast of cricket enhanced dramatically. Fans love hearing from the players during the heat of the battle on the field of play. But it also helps the players express their personalities and enhance their reputations. This is a great initiative for everyone involved.
“I would like to thank Fox Sports for working with us to bring this idea to life.”
Fox Sports’ Head of Television, Steve Crawley, said: “It’s about giving fans an insight they wouldn’t normally get; to take them closer to the action and you can’t get much closer than hearing from the players as they walk down the fairway during play.
“This is a first of its kind for golf broadcasting in Australia and we can’t wait to offer this incredible experience to Foxtel subscribers.”
Australian golf has been driving innovation in the game for a number of years with the men and women professionals last week contesting the Oates Vic Open on the same course, at the same time for equal prize money.
This week sees the second staging of the stroke play/match play hybrid tournament; the ISPS Handa World Super 6 Perth. This was the first international tournament to utilise this format concept with tournaments like the GolfSixes and the European Challenge Tour’s Northern Ireland Open replicating its success.
“The ISPS Handa World Super 6 Perth is the perfect tournament for us to launch PGA Open Mic,” added Kirkman.
“The format is innovative and now we have an equally innovative way to comprehensively tell the story and show the action unfolding.”
The success of PGA Open Mic will be contingent on the players embracing this modern broadcast method and already the ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia players are responding positively to the idea.
“We have spoken to a number of our ISPS Handa PGA Tour of Australasia players and they are excited, too,” added Kirkman.
“They are passionate sports fans, they watch what other sports are doing to bring fans closer to the action and they want to provide this same opportunity to golf fans.
“We are anticipating this innovation to be very popular amongst the Australians and New Zealanders. Everyone is very excited so literally, watch this space!”
The ISPS Handa World Super 6 Perth will be broadcast to an estimated 460 million people in 33 countries around the world.
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