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Player Continues Charity Efforts in China

Participants at the Gary Player Invitational in Shanghai lit candles inside the word that gave meaning to the World Golf Hall of Famer's annual event.

November 16, 2011


SHANGHAI, China—The 2011 Gary Player Invitational was a rousing success, raising more than $2 million to help benefit children who have been affected by AIDS throughout China. 

“It was absolutely fantastic and I could not have dreamed of a better birthday present,” said tournament host Gary Player. “This was our fifth Gary Player Invitational event in China, and every year is better than the last. The support we received from our sponsors and guests was incredible, especially during such difficult economic times.

“Knowing that the money raised will make a real difference in the lives of children who have faced such hardship because of AIDS is truly gratifying,” Player continued.

The GPI event began with a gala dinner and auction held at the Shangri-La Hotel on Oct. 31 followed by a pro-am golf tournament at the Player designed Shanghai Links Golf and Country Club the next day. Singer Eason Chan, singer-songwriter J.J. Lin and actress and singer Ariel Lin headlined the evening entertainment. 

“The support from everyone has simply blown us away,” said Marc Player, CEO of Black Knight International. “The event has become so much more than a charity golf tournament, which is a testament to the commitment that Doug Jackson and his super team at Coca-Cola have made to this event,” he added.

Perhaps the most visually memorable aspect of the gala dinner was the word hope. To emphasize the true mission of the event—helping children in need build a better future—the word was placed at the entrance of the ballroom. Upon arrival each guest was given a candle to light and place within the word. The result was a candlelit beacon reinforcing the commitment to assist those who need it most.

The tournament featured major championship winners Retief Goosen and Louis Oosthuizen, Chinese professional golfer Lian-Wei Zhang and Player. 

READ MORE ABOUT: Gary Player , Retief Goosen
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