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A M AT E U R N E W S

Full marks for Ferdie at SA Senior Amateur

W

hen asked about his highlights of the Fellowship Cup, Matt Saulez didn’t talk mention his debut or South Africa’s roaring 26 – 6 victory. Instead, Saulez talked about friendships forged with the Indian competitors and the chance to run shoulders with the rest of the GolfRSA squad during the three-day Test at Leopard Creek.

Unheralded Ferdie van der Merwe sealed a sensational maiden victory when he clinched the SA Senior Amateur Championship title in dramatic fashion at Hermanus GC last month. The 51-year-old from Wellington stunned the field when he shot into contention with successive rounds of 72 in his debut on the senior amateur national circuit. Not surprisingly, the ‘rookie’ earned overwhelming applause after he defeated reigning Players champion Andre van Dyk at the first extra hole of a sudden-death play-off. “I feel 10 feet tall,” said the beaming Van der Merwe. “I’ve won more than 50 titles in club opens or Boland Golf Union events, but this is such a special moment. “I’ve hit the ball so well all week, but the putts refused to drop. It was frustrating, but I had my partner Cornel (de Jager) on the bag and she kept me calm and confident that the putter would warm up. I holed a short one for birdie at 12, but it took another seven holes before it warmed up again. “That last putt wasn’t very long – maybe six feet – but it rolled on the perfect line all the way and when

January | February 2018

it dropped, I almost couldn’t believe it. You know, I nearly didn’t even enter. They told me I had to enter online and I couldn’t figure it out, so if it wasn’t for Mariette at Boland Golf Union, I wouldn’t even have been here this week. “I’ve played Hermanus just twice in the last 18 years. We had to endure three club winds in all three rounds and this week was a real test of patience, but what a fantastic test of golf. To beat some of the legends of the game and to win on the senior circuit has been a dream, but now it’s a reality. I am sure this is how David felt when he knocked down Goliath.” Le Roux closed with a 75 to finish third on 223 in a tie with Watson, who signed for 82.

FINAL RESULTS: 222

Ferdi van der Merwe

72 72 78 (play-off / first extra hole)

22

Andre van Dyk

71 76 75

223

Francois le Roux

74 74 75

Graeme Watson

72 69 82

224

Stephen Johnston

74 73 77

225

Craig Poulton

77 73 75

Rurik Gobel

75 75 75

Morgan Phillips

75 72 78

226

Jock Wellington

73 73 80

227

Brian Mampies

80 75 72

Stanley de Beer

75 76 76

Richard Bruyns

74 72 81

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SA Golf Trader - January/February 2018  

SA’s Leading FREE Golf Products & Services Magazine

SA Golf Trader - January/February 2018  

SA’s Leading FREE Golf Products & Services Magazine