Blaauw loses exemption into SA Open
The Glacier SA Amateur and SA Stroke Play Champion, Jacques Blaauw, has lost his exemption into the prestigious South African Open Championship being played at Pearl Valley Golf Estates from 18 to 21 December, announced the South African Golf Association (‘SAGA’) today.
“Jacques wrote to the SAGA stating that he had decided to give up his amateur status and consequently loses his right to tee up with the defending champion, James Kingston, in the first two rounds of the SA Open,” said SAGA President Enver Hassen. This means that the talented 22 year old Paarl Golf Club member will have to qualify, if he now wants to play, or secure an invitation.
The SAGA has five exemptions for the SA Open, these have been awarded to Dylan Frittelli (Gauteng North), Cameron Johnston (Western Province), Adrian Ford (Western Province), Derik Ferreira (Gauteng North) and Dean O’Riley (Ekurhuleni), the SAGA announced today.
Dylan Frittelli, the 18 year old Irene Golf Club member who is currently on a scholarship at the University of Texas, earned his place as a member of South Africa’s successful Eisenhower Trophy team that played in the World Amateur Team Championship in Sydney, Australia last month. Frittelli returns home, from the US, for a Christmas break next month.
Cameron Johnston, 37 year old Milnerton Golf Club member, who was Frittelli’s team mate in Australia, also qualifies. “I have entered the Sunshine Tour’s Final Qualifying School without forgoing my amateur status. In this way, if I make it at Tour School, I still retain my amateur status until such time as I advise the Sunshine Tour otherwise. I am not giving up an opportunity to play in the SA Open for anything,” explained Johnston.
Derik Ferreira, 19 year old Centurion Country Club member, and Adrian Ford, 20 year old who plays out of Durbanville Golf Club, currently ranked 2nd and 4th respectively on the latest SAGA Player Rankings, have both been selected to represent South Afica in the Juan Carlos Tailhade Cup and Argentina Amateur being played in Buenos Aires later this month. According to the SAGA they qualify as the next two highest ranked players who have won national colours this year.
The fifth spot goes to 19 year old Benoni Lake Golf Club member, Dean O’Riley, who represented South Africa in the Zone VI in April this year. He qualifies as the next highest ranked player, on the SAGA Player Rankings, who won national colours and therefore fills the final spot.