The participation of a legend, a hole in one, a Slovak sports accident or an endless shootout. This was also about the 7th year of the Penati Slovak Open.
The biggest international golf tournament of the year in Slovakia took place from September 10 to 12 in one of the world’s most beautiful resorts – Penati. The entire event, with a record subsidy of 22 thousand euros, occurred under absolutely perfect conditions, accompanied by sunny and windless weather. The Legend course, with a par of 73, was prepared at the highest level.
The three-day event started with the popular Pro-Am tournament, where professional players teamed up with personalities and partners of the Penati Slovak Open. Victory was claimed by the team led by professional Šimon Zach, who shared the stage with Andrej Chochoľ, Peter Palka, and Milan Sciranka. An additional competition during the Pro-Am day was the professional tournament, traditionally dominated by the Czech Tomáš Beck, finishing 6 shots under par and earning a 1000 euro bonus. His compatriot, Ondrej Lieser, came just one shot short of victory. On hole no. 3, a collection was held for handicapped golfers, who finally received a check worth 1450 euros.
The first round of the main two-round tournament, in which 64 players from seven countries participated, showcased admirable performances. The best starting position after the first day was secured by Denk and Sedláček, who achieved a score of -6. Luca Denk from Austria further bolstered his position with a hole-in-one on hole no. 12 and an eagle on the 15th – the iconic par 6 hole, the longest in Europe, measuring 712 meters. Meanwhile, Czech leader Tadeáš Sedláček recorded 7 birdies. The highest-ranked Slovak after the first day was the holder of a free card, René Bergendi, on the provisional 7th place.
Tournament ambassador Rory Sabbatini was also present at the Penati Slovak Open. The defending champion from 2019 shot 5 under par over two rounds, finishing tied for 4th. The Olympic silver medalist from Tokyo ended the season in Šajdíkove Humence.
Another Slovak, René Bergendi, also finished in 4th place. The 18-year-old golfing talent from our country performed brilliantly on his home course and seemed headed for a sensational victory with 9 shots under par. However, an unfortunate turn on the 18th hole, where two of his balls ended up in the water and he played 4 shots over par, brought his story to a bitter conclusion. Nevertheless, he did not regret his decision on the hole with the island green.
After the end of both rounds, three players were tied for 1st place: the leader after the first day, Austrian Luca Denk, alongside Czech player Marek Siakal and the defending champion from 2020, Olympian from Tokyo, Ondrej Lieser. Denk was eliminated in the first round of the shootout. Spectators at Penati witnessed an endless playoff that ended almost after dark. Siakala and Lieser had to replay par-4 hole number 18 up to 7 times, teeing off from three different locations. In the end, the winner was determined by a better-managed hole played from the red tee, where Siakala landed his first shot on the green, made two putts, and secured a birdie, while Lieser only managed par. In addition to the trophy, the winner of the 7th Penati Slovak Open, Marek Siakala of the Czech Republic, also received a bonus of 10,000 euros and a free card for the Swiss Challenge of the Challenge Tour series.