Mistry, Paulsen goes wire-to-wire for SA Amateur glory

PRETORIA, 20 March 2019 – Kajal Mistry slept on the lead for two straight nights and on Friday, she finished the job to lift the South African Women’s Stroke Play Championship trophy for a second time.

And Mistry was not the only one to reach the winner’s circle in wire-to-wire style.

Western Province rising star Kayla Paulsen also led from start to finish at Woodhill Residential Estate and Country Club to seal a five stroke victory in the B-Division.

Mistry opened her campaign with a two-under-par 70 to share the lead with fellow GolfRSA Elite Squad player Caitlyn Macnab. She fired a stunning five-under 67 in the second round to start the final day four shots clear of Gauteng team-mate Symone Henriques.

Macnab was a further three strokes adrift in joint third with Boland junior Megan Streicher.

Mistry birdied three of her first five holes, but a bogey at par three 12th and double bogey at the par four 13th cut her advantage to three shots.

The 18-year-old Randpark golfer, who had been remarkably poised all week, shrugged off the back nine stumble and solid pars from the 14th hole allowed her to enjoy a long-awaited walk up the final hole.

A six-foot putt for par at the last for a final round 71 and a five shot triumph was celebrated with a water shower from her close friends and fellow GolfRSA Elite Squad team-mates.

“I really happy with the result and the way I managed my game around this tough course to win again,” said Mistry.

“I played a really great round on day two to give myself a chance and I stuck to my strategy in the final round. When I won two years ago, it was the first time I experienced real pressure. This time around, I never felt under pressure and I could actually enjoy the win.”

Henriques birdied the second and eagled the par five fifth, but Mistry responded with a trio of birdies.

The 2017 champion hit a knock-down pitching wedge into the second and holed the six-foot birdie putt, and rolled in a left-to-right tester from 10 foot at the fourth for birdie number two. “I was a little out of position on the left at the par five,” said the Ernie Els and Fancourt Foundation member.

“I laid up with a 7-iron and I hit it about two metres past the pin. Symone was on the green in two and drained a 20 metre putt for eagle, but I got a good line from her and holed the birdie putt.”

Mistry’s lead dwindled to three shots after she dropped three shots at 12 and 13.

“That par three is really daunting from the elevated tee and the pin was front left and the last thing I wanted to do was go in the drink, so hit it way past the hole,” Mistry said. “I lagged it close but the par putt just burned the edge.

“At 13, I hit a terrible tee shot left off the tee. I had a tree in my way and couldn’t see the flag and hit my second shot in the left bunker. I had another tree in the way, so I punched out, chipped it to six foot, but missed the bogey putt on the low side.

“I learned a lot on the Sunshine Ladies Tour about letting go of bad shots, and even when the gap was reduced, I didn’t let my thoughts wander. I just made sure that I kept in the moment and played for pars coming home.

“I’m really stoked, but there won’t be much time for celebration, because the Match Play starts tomorrow. Now the pressure really starts, because anything can happen in this format. I would love to add my name to the winner’s list, so I’ll hit the reset button tomorrow morning.”

Macnab battled a balky putter on day two and struggled with the flat-stick for most of the final round, but something clicked as the Serengeti golfer came down the home stretch. She fired three birdies on the bounce from 16 to close out a runner-up finish with a three-under 69.

Henriques signed for a 74 to finish in third on one-under.

Two-time Bridge Fund Manager Junior Series winner Kiera Floyd reeled in a trio of birdies from the ninth on her way to a final round 71 that earned the 15-year-old Ekurhuleni junior fourth on her own on one-over.

Gauteng’s Kaiyuree Moodley closed with an even-par 72 to round out the top five on two-over.

Western Province Women’s Golf Development Squad graduate Paulsen was over the moon after edging out Kamaya Moodliar from KwaZulu-Natal with rounds of 87, 85 and 87 to win the B-Division. “I had low expectations coming here because Woodhill is such a tough course, and I’m so happy with the result.

“The course was quite long and the greens are so tough to read, but I was really happy with the way I started this week. I wanted to test myself against the field, and I really managed myself well. Now I can leave for Texas to start at Ranger College with a big win under my belt.

“I couldn’t have done this without the support of Western Province Women’s Golf. Their financial, emotional and coaching support has been incredible since I joined the squad five years ago, so I am definitely sharing this trophy with our president Maureen Weimar and all the amazing people at Western Province Women’s Golf.”

A-Division Final Result

208 Kajal Mistry 70 67 71

213 Caitlyn Macnab 70 74 69

215 Symone Henriques 74 67 74

217 Kiera Floyd 73 73 71

218 Kaiyuree Moodley 74 72 72

219 Kaylah Williams 76 72 71; Megan Streicher 71 73 75

220 Zethu Myeki 76 73 71

225 Larissa du Preez 73 77 75

227 Jordan Rothman 79 71 77; Stephanie Barbaglia 76 73 78

228 Gabrelle Venter 77 73 78; Samantha Whateley 79 71 78

232 Marine Legentil 76 81 75; Zane Naude 76 79 77

234 Emily Jones ZIM 81 74 79; Liezl Smit 76 74 84

236 Kaylan Boshof 78 80 78; Kera Healey 78 78 80; Nadia van der Westhuizen 75 80 81

237 Kim de Klerk 83 79 75; Eleonora Galletti 78 81 78

238 Sandra Winter 81 77 80; Danielle Bekker 76 81 81

239 Nicola Schoeman 83 82 74; Kyra van Kan 83 80 76; Vicki Traut 81 79 79; Demi Flanagan 78 81 80; Nina Grey 74 79 86

240 Alisa Rich 84 77 79; Annalie Swanepoel 76 79 85

241 Bobbi Brown 79 80 82

242 Isabella van Rooyen 86 78 78; Heidi van der Berg 79 80 83

246 Bronwyn Leigh Doeg 80 85 81

247 Lizzie Currie 85 82 80

248 Ineke Brynard 83 88 77; Teagan Lubbe 85 82 81

250 Lauren Clough 81 86 83; Eva Magala UGA 84 79 87

252 Anika Smit 87 86 79; Shani Brynard 83 87 82; Lynne Behagg 81 87 84; Tebogo Lefifi 82 82 88

253 Senayah Moodliar 79 90 84

256 Holly Lau 82 86 88

257 Charlene Oosthuizen 87 89 81; Petrone Rudolph 85 84 88

258 Pheletso Mota 86 90 82

260 Odette Booysen 86 84 90

262 Elizabeth Lightley 95 84 83

263 Melani Grobler 92 86 85

266 Gloria Mbaguta UGA 89 94 83; Millie Dondashe 88 95 83

268 Jessica Meyer 87 94 87; Megan Kraft 85 86 97

269 Ellandri van Heerden 94 88 87

282 Rouchelle Eksteen 98 91 93

285 Gizelle van der Westhuizen 98 95 92

WD Lize-Mari Prinsloo 93 WD WD

B-Division Final Result

259 Kayla Paulsen 87 85 87

264 Kamaya Moodliar 88 91 85

268 Jutta Tecklenburg 90 89 89

280 Melinda van den Heever 89 104 87; Rene Matthee 93 94 93

285 Zoe Heyneke 98 96 91

289 Anesu Gavaza 92 96 101

293 Sinead Rice 96 100 97; Amanda Kieser 93 98 102

WD Bonolo Thato Tshite 132 106 WD

Randpark golfer Kajal Mistry celebrated her second South African Women’s Amateur Stroke Play Championship triumph with a wire-to-wire victory at Woodhill Residential Estate and Country Club; credit Ernest Blignault.

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