CAPE TOWN, 4 May 2017 – GolfRSA has announced a team of GolfRSA National Squad players, including four from the Southern Cape, to take part in its annual tour to the United Kingdom this June.
The team of 10 will participate in various top-ranked international tournaments over a four-week stretch, including the Carrick Neill Scottish Men’s Open Championship, the St Andrews Links Trophy and the British Amateur Championship.
South Africa’s top-three ranked players Kyle McClatchie, Garrick Higgo and Albert Venter will get an early taste of UK conditions when head over before the tour officially starts, to tee it up in the Brabazon Trophy.The Brabazon, also known as the English Amateur Stroke Play, will be played at Woodhall Spa Golf Club in Lincolnshire. South Africa has
The Brabazon, also known as the English Amateur Stroke Play, will be played at Woodhall Spa Golf Club in Lincolnshire. South Africa has proud history in this event, having produced four winners – Neville Sundelson (1974), Richard Kaplan (1986), Craig Rivett (1989) and the most recent being Charl Schwartzel in 2002.
The UK Tour officially kicks off with the Carrick Neill Scottish Men’s Open Championship at Western Gailes, as fellow GolfRSA National Squad members Marco Steyn and Franklin Manchest join McClatchie, Higgo, Venter and SA number five ranked Matt Saulez in Scotland.
Dale Hayes, in 1970, is the only previous South African winner of this prestigious event.
Jovan Rebula and Dylan Naidoo, who are based at college in the USA, will join the squad for the St Andrews Links Trophy, which is played over the Old Course and Jubilee Course and is regarded as the biggest amateur event in the United Kingdom, outside of the Amateur Championship.
Higgo, however, will miss this event as he joins up with the SA Junior team in Japan.
The left-hander teams up with reigning Sanlam SA Amateur champion Christo Lamprecht, 2017 Nomads SA Boys Under-19 champion Jayden Schaper and Luca Filippi to represent the country in the Toyota Junior World Cup at Chukyo Golf Club’s Ishino Course, where they will have an excellent chance of improving on last year’s tie-fourth finish.
The final event of the tour sees the squad travel to the south east of England for the British Amateur Championship Qualifier at Royal St George’s Golf Club and Prince’s Golf Club.
Lamprecht, Filippi and Higgo will join the large squad at the home of the 2011 Open Championship in attempting to become only the second South African champion after Bobby Cole in 1966.
The Golf RSA’s National Squad was launched last year with the help of a sizeable donation from South African businessman Johann Rupert.
To date, five former squad members have turned professional, with four of them campaigning in their rookie season on the Sunshine Tour, including 2017 Sunshine Tour Qualifying School winner Herman Loubser.
The fifth graduate, former number one-ranked Tristen Strydom, competes on the European Challenge Tour and the Big Easy and IGT Challenge Tour circuits at home.
“The 2017 squad is a much smaller and younger squad than last year, which allows us to pay closer attention to the individual needs of each player,” explained GolfRSA CEO Grant Hepburn.
“We look forward to working with the country’s most talented young amateurs over the next few years, giving them the best possible preparation for life as a professional golfer.
“Mr Rupert’s generosity has once again created an opportunity for the players to train together as an elite squad, as well as attend high-profile international events. The National Squad players will have the opportunity to learn from the best golf and life skills coaches in South Africa as well as compete against the world’s top young amateurs – both on home soil and internationally.”
2017 GolfRSA National Squad
NAME (Home Club and age)
Albert Venter (Silver Lakes CC / 21)
Carl Mwale (Eagle Canyon / 15)
Casey Jarvis (State Mines CC / 13)
Christo Lamprecht (Pinnacle Point GG / 16)
Cole Stevens (Parkview GC / 15)
Dylan Naidoo (Modderfontein GC / 19)
Franklin Manchest (George GC / 18)
Garrick Higgo (De Zalze GC / 17)
Jayden Schaper (Ebotse GC / 16)
Jovan Rebula (George GC / 19)
Kieron van Wyk (Ruimsig CC / 15)
Kyle McClatchie (Serengeti GWE / 19)
Luca Filippi (Milnerton GC / 18)
Marco Steyn (Modderfontein GC / 19)
Martin Vorster (Pinnacle Point GC / 15)
Matt Saulez (Durban CC / 20)
Wilco Nienaber (Bloemfontein GC / 17)
Yurav Premlall (Glendower GC / 13)