The Surya Nepal Western Open is teeing off here at the Himalayan Golf Course on Tuesday.

A total of 51 players - 37 pros and 14 amateurs - will take part in the third event under the Surya Nepal Golf Tour 2021. After the 54-hole main competition, the tournament will end with the Pro-Am event on Friday.

"All the professional and top amateur golfers of the country have already arrived in Pokhara and are getting acclimatised to the playing conditions of the most adventurous golf course of the country," said the organisers, Nepal Professional Golfers Association, in a press release.

"The course set in the backdrops of majestic Mt Machhapuchre and rested in the ravine alongside Bijayapur River is certainly going to test the skills of the top-notch golfers."

The tournament carries a cash purse of Rs 735,000, raised by Rs 235,000 this year. After three gruelling rounds of golf, the top pro will be richer by Rs 130,000, while the runner-up will earn Rs 84,000. The second runner-up will receive Rs 60,000, while others in the top 21 - who survive the cut after second round - will get their share of cash prizes.

Defending champion Dhana Thapa and Nepal No 1 Bhuwan Nagarkoti are expected to face a tough challenge from Dharan pro Sukra Bahadur Rai, who won the second event of the tour, Dharan Open last month, Sanjay Lama and Rame Magar. South Asian Games double gold medallist Subash Tamang - who won the season-opening Surya Nepal Central Open and skipped the second event in Dharan - will be the player to watch along with amateurs Aijit BK, Yubraj Bhujel and Ritesh Tamang.

"Himalayan Golf course has been tweaked to its best standard and awaiting to punish the best players of the game in Nepal. The course - par-69 with 16 holes, playing the first and second holes twice - will make the competition very challenging," NPGA added.

A version of this article appears in the print on April 6, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.