Compleat Golfer hosted the 21st edition of its Annual Awards Dinner, brought to you by Volvo, at Country Club Johannesburg last night. The evening is a black-tie celebration of the success of the South African golfing industry, from tour professionals through to administrative staff, members of the turf industry and amateur golf.
‘Mr Golf’ Dale Hayes was in fine form behind the microphone and was ably assisted in introducing the awards by a whole host of golf and sports celebs, including Denis Hutchinson, Dave Usendorff and comedian Joe Parker.
Sunshine Tour executive director Selwyn Nathan was honoured for his life-long dedication to the game in South Africa with the coveted Contribution to Golf award. Nathan began his golfing career as a touring professional and has since been involved in the South African Golf Development Board and the Sunshine Tour, where he has been executive director for the past two years.
Turf specialist Pye Bredenkamp was awarded the Contribution to Golf Industry for his extensive input into improving the grass and turf standards on South African golf courses and other award winners on the evening included Ernie Els for Compleat Golfer’s Player of the Year after his magnificent triumph in the 2012 Open Championship and Richard Sterne for the Comeback of the Year. Sterne returned from a career-threatening back injury and won the Joburg Open earlier this year.
Branden Grace received the Volvo Mover of the Year award, having won five professional events worldwide, including the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland. The Southern Cape golfer moved from 271st in the World Ranking to 34th in 2012 and great things are expected of the 24-year-old. He was unable to be at the dinner to collect the award, however he did send through a video message from the US, where he is preparing for his first Masters.
For a third year running, Lee-Anne Pace collected the WPGA Player of the Year award after finishing seventh on the Ladies European Tour Order of Merit, while there were also awards for top amateurs Thriston Lawrence, Swaziland’s Nobuhle Dlamini and Haydn Porteous.
Neil Bisseker scooped the Telkom Business Golf Journalist of the Year Award as well as a cheque for R10 000 sponsored by Telkom Business. Bisseker has been a sports journalist for 20 years and is well known in the Eastern Cape as the sports editor on Algoa FM.
This year a total of 25 golf clubs were awarded the prestigious Compleat Golfer 5-Star Experience Awards proudly brought to you by Volvo, and these clubs represent the finest golf experiences in the country. This list includes Fancourt, Pezula, Pinnacle Point, Simola and Oubaai.
List of award winners
Compleat Golfer Mid Amateur champion: Marius Lourens
Telkom Business Golf Journalist of the Year: Neil Bisseker
SADGA Golfer of the Year: Daniel Slabbert
Volvo Mover of the Year: Branden Grace
CMASA Manager of the Year: Marius Els
Compleat Golfer Superintendent of the Year: Vern Whitson (RoyalCape) and Dean Whitson (River Club)
Compleat Golfer Newsmaker of the Year: Louis Oosthuizen
Compleat Golfer Comeback of the Year: Richard Sterne
WGSA Ladies Amateur Golfer of the Year: Nobuhle Dlamini
WPGA Player of the Year: Lee-Anne Pace
Junior Golfer of the Year: Thriston Lawrence
SAGA Men’s Amateur Golfer of the Year: Haydn Porteous
Compleat Golfer Contribution to the Golf Industry: Pye Bredenkamp
PGA of SA National Champion: Rudy Whitfield
PGA of SA Teaching Pro of the Year: Ben Fouchee
PGA of SA Order of Merit winner: Kenneth Dube
PGA Professional of the Year: Louis Destroo
Compleat Golfer Golfer of the Year: Ernie Els
Compleat Golfer Contribution to Golf: Selwyn Nathan