NELSPRUIT, 20 May 2014 – North West Province claimed the A-Section title in a show of true sportsmanship, while KwaZulu-Natal completed their undefeated march to promotion in the 2016 South African Country Districts Tournament at Nelspruit Golf Club on Friday.
Lali Stander – When their manager Leon Beval clinched the Manager’s Championship ahead of the tournament, the North West team took this as a good omen and pummelled Ekurhuleni 11 – 1 in their opening match.
The 2013 champions handed both Boland and Free State an 8 – 4 drubbing to top the standings heading into the final round and all they needed was one final show of strength against Mpumalanga to seal the deal.
This time, however, victory took a back seat to the spirit of the game of golf.
The two teams tied at 2-all in the Foursomes, but Marco Schoenfeld gave North West an early edge when he defeated Ivan Mare 6 & 5.
Naithen Moore widened the gap to two points when he downed Peetie van der Merwe 4 & 3, but Ru-Jean Lessingh hit back for Mpumalanga with a 2 & 1 win against Tiaan Maree.
Johan Krugel downed Chris Zietsman 2 & 1 to extend North West’s lead again, but Daniel Clifford kept the difference at one point when he beat David-Louis Nortje 1-up.
Then North West’s Zabastian de Jager halved against Gary Daniel and team-mate Slade Pickering also squared his game against Eddie Wilken to keep North West in control. It was down to the final game between North West’s Albert Britz and Christiaan de Beer.
“At this stage, we had a 6 – 5 lead, but we already won the title on game points,” explained North West manager Leon Beval.
“Albert had a putt to win his game, but we decided to concede the putt. Christiaan made his to win the game and we drew 6-all with Mpumalanga.
“This championship has a spirit of fierce competition, but it is also a great demonstration of sportsmanship and friendship. We conceded the game to honour the spirit in which championship is played.”
Moore finished the week undefeated and took the Most Valuable Player’s list, while Pickering finished second. Krugel and De Jager shared fifth with Lauritz Loubser from Boland, while the balance of the team all tied for 11th.
“Naithen was a huge banker for us this week and Slade was equally impressive, but if you look at the MVP list, you can see how the whole team pulled together for each other,” Beval said. “Everyone covered everyone else and that commitment was our recipe for success.”
KwaZulu-Natal also came into the final round undefeated, but unlike North West, the coastal side took their winning run all the way to the finish line to claim a four point victory on 10 points.
KZN mowed down Eastern Province 10.5 – 1.5 to lay a solid foundation in the first round, and kept up the pressure to defeat Limpopo 9.5 – 3.5 in round two. Southern Cape was next to join the casualty list and went down 3 – 9, and KZN protected their spot at the top of the log with an 8 – 4 result against Northern Cape in round four.
In the final round, Border won two games in the Foursomes, but the 2014 champions were no match for KZN in the Singles.
Number one Louis Albertse took the first scalp when he defeated Patrick Ludick 4 & 2. Sean Baker downed Fellow Ngantweni 3 & 1, Ryno Crous won 2 & 1 against Charl Stotter and Corne van Deventer took care of Jarred Scharneck to secure a 6 – 2 lead for KwaZulu-Natal.
Ian Thomas briefly stemmed the bleeding for Border when he downed Johan Pienaar 4 & 2, but Jens Hillerman, Derek Scullard and Combrinck Smit put the seal on the team’s victory when they squared the last three games.
Van Deventer finished second in the Most Valuable Players List behind frontrunner Lukas Steyn from Southern Cape. Albertse took third, Smit and Baker tied for fourth, and Hillerman shared sixth.
“This was a massive team effort and every guy on the team can take pride in this victory,” said KZN manager Wynand de Swardt.
“More than half our team finished in the top 10 on the Most Valuable Player’s List and that says everything about these guys’ commitment to the team. After two failed attempts, we got the job done this year. We are back in the A-Section and next year the guys are coming to play in our back yard. They better know that we will be ready for them.”
A-SECTION FINAL ROUND RESULTS
North West 6 vs Mpumalanga 6
Schoenfeld / Maree lost to Clifford / Daniel 5 & 3;
De Jager / Nortje beat Wilken / Zietsman 7 & 6;
Britz / Krugel lost to Mare / De Beer 5 & 3;
Pickering / Moore beat Lessingh / van der Merwe 5 & 4;
Marco Schoenfeld beat Ivan Mare 6 & 5;
Tiaan Maree lost to Ru-Jean Lessingh 2 & 1;
David-Louis Nortje lost to Daniel James Clifford 1Down;
Johan Krugel beat Chris Zietsman 2 & 1;
Zabastian de Jager halved with Gary Daniel;
Slade Pickering halved with E Wilken;
Albert Britz lost to Christiaan De Beer 1Down;
Naithen Moore beat Peetie van der Merwe 4 & 3;
Ekurhuleni 6.5 vs Free State 5.5
Olfsen / De Abreu halved with Muller / Froneman;
Joubert / Di Bucci beat Nel / Theron 3 & 1;
Haasbroek / Hulme lost to Erasmus / Schutte 5 & 4;
Gildenhuys / Gildenhuys lost to Swartz / Fourie 5 & 3;
Lawrence Joubert beat Franco Froneman 2 & 1;
Marco Di Bucci lost to Ge-Rico Muller 2 & 1;
Dino De Abreu beat Adriaan Sarel Nel 3 & 2;
Sean Olfsen lost to Almero Theron 1Down;
Brandon Gildenhuys beat Lourens Erasmus 5 & 3;
Burt Gildenhuys beat Jacques Schutte 3 & 2;
Stefan Hulme beat Pieter Swartz 1Up;
Andrew Haasbroek lost to Josef Fourie 8 & 6;
A-SECTION FINAL LOG
1 North West (4, 3, 1, 0, 7, 33.0)
T2 Mpumalanga (4, 2, 1, 1, 5, 25.5)
T2 Boland (4, 2, 1, 1, 5, 25.5)
4 Ekurhuleni (4, 1, 1, 2, 3, 18.0)
5 Free State (4, 0, 0, 4, 0, 18.0)
B-SECTION FINAL ROUND RESULTS
Kwazulu-Natal 7.5 vs Border 4.5
Pienaar / Crous beat Thomas / Stotter 2Up;
Baker / van Deventer beat Ludick / Scharneck 2 & 1;
Hillerman / Scullard lost to Jonas / Ngantweni 1Down;
Albertse / Smit lost to du Preez / Nel 3 & 2;
Johan Pienaar lost to Ian Thomas 4 & 3;
Ryno Crous beat Charl Stotter 2 & 1;
Sean Baker beat Fellow Ngantweni 3 & 1;
Jens Hillerman halved with Ben Jonas;
Corne van Deventer beat Jarred Scharneck 1Up;
Derek Scullard halved with Niel du Preez;
Combrinck Smit halved with Pieter Nel;
Louis Albertse beat Patrick Ludick 4 & 2;
Northern Cape 6 vs Eastern Province 6
Van Zyl / Kruis beat Manuel / Ludick 4 & 3;
Jacobs / Marais beat Manuel / Olivier 4 & 3;
Kori / Hugo lost to van der Bank / Burger 3 & 2;
Van der Walt / Kruger beat Qunta / Preston 2 & 1;
Gideon Kruis beat Johnny Ludick 1Up;
Darren Van Zyl beat Tiaan van der Bank 2 & 1;
Pieter Marais lost to Moolman Olivier 2 & 1;
Nico (Jnr) Jacobs lost to Gregory Manuel 3 & 2;
Stephanus Christiaan Hugo lost to Anthony Preston 2 & 1;
Andries Kori lost to Rhalf Manuel 1Down;
NJ van der Walt lost to Attie Burger 2Down;
Daniel Kruger beat Eddie Qunta 3 & 2;
Southern Cape 7 vs Limpopo 5
Faber / Barnard lost to Chandler / Wiggill 3 & 2;
Welgemoed / Human beat Mackays / Van der Walt 1Up;
De Lange / Geldenhuys lost to van Baalen / Hawken 1Down;
Steyn / Norgarb beat Putter / Olley 2 & 1;
Stafie Barnard lost to Shaun Chandler 2 & 1;
James Faber lost to David Wiggill 2 & 1;
Hans-Jurie Human beat Jay Van der Walt 3 & 2;
Marius de Lange beat Edwin Mackays 3 & 2;
Werner Welgemoed lost to Antony Hawken 5 & 3;
Ian Norgarb beat Conrad van Baalen 1Up;
Henk Geldenhuys beat Franco Putter 2 & 1;
Lukas Cornelius Steyn beat Vincent Olley 4 & 2;
B-SECTION FINAL LOG
1 Kwazulu-Natal (5, 5, 0, 0, 10, 44.5)
2 Border (5, 3, 0, 2, 6, 30.0)
3 Northern Cape (5, 1, 3, 1, 5, 31.0)
4 Southern Cape (5, 2, 1, 2, 5, 29.5)
5 Limpopo (5, 0, 2, 3, 2, 23.5)
6 Eastern Province (5, 0, 2, 3, 2, 21.5)