WORCESTER, 13 December 2015 – Western Province is primed to launch their title defence in the South African U-19 Inter-Provincial when they tackle Central Gauteng and Gauteng North in their opening gambit at Worcester Golf Club on Monday.
Western Province secured their 14th victory in the esteemed junior team championship with four straight victories and a tense, titanic tussle for final round tie against Central Gauteng at Krugersdorp Golf Club 12 months ago and skipper Michael Sherriff said the side is ready to go the full distance again.
“We worked hard in preparation for this week,” said Sherriff as the team put the final touches to their preparation in Sunday’s practice round.
“We know we will come under fire, but all the guys are positive and determined to give us the strong start we need to start the week on the front foot.”
The Western Province captain believes the A-Section teams are very evenly matched, but he does consider Central Gauteng a threat this year.
“We were involved in a do-or-die battle against Central Gauteng in last year’s final round, but we rallied exceptionally well to force the tie that clinched victory for us. We know Central Gauteng smarted after coming up short and they will be rearing to go.
“But we also expect Gauteng North to come out charging. They had a lot of rookies last year. They didn’t have a great start, but they kept improving and four of those guys are back this year. They also have Keegan de Lange in the team this year. Keegan was the joint Most Valuable Player in the Premier Inter-Provincial at Glendower in September. We will keep our eye on him.
“We are not taking any team lightly, but we will definitely be tested in the first round. We just need to start strong to get the momentum going.”
Sherriff and team mate Luca Filippi, who both played in the Premier SA IPT, return for duty alongside Cole Cruickshank, Hayden Garcia and Alistair Snowdon, all members of the victorious 2014 team, while SA Junior IPT rookies Hilmi Mallick, Craig Baba and Deon Germishuys complete their line-up.
Captain Dylan Naidoo, Marco Steyn, Keelan van Wyk, David Meyers and Fritz Orren once again line up for Central Gauteng alongside Guy Waterhouse, Emilio Pera and Kyle Barker.
The second A-Section match on Monday will see KwaZulu-Natal, Ekurhuleni and Southern Cape go head-to-head, while host union Boland will enjoy a first-round bye.
Meanwhile Eastern Province will be looking to emulate their 2014 Premier SA IPT and 2015 SA Mid-Amateur IPT teams in the battle for promotion in the B-Section.
Eastern Province will also be hunting a fast start in their opening gambit against North West and Limpopo, who was left holding the wooden spoon last year.
Border, Free State and Mpumalanga will face off in the second B-Section match, while Northern Cape – making their provincial debut in the SA U-19 Inter-Provincial – has a first round bye.
View the tee times and live scoring at ww.saga.co.za
Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of the South African Golf Association.