23 December 2019 – As we stare down the end of 2019, I’d like to take the opportunity to wish all our club golfers the happiest of Festive Seasons. For many, 2019 has been a year filled with difficult challenges and I do hope that you are able to take some time off over the holidays to recharge your batteries for 2020. Hopefully that includes some time on the golf course, doing what we love.

The year truly has raced by and I can scarcely believe that we are staring down 2020. It feels like just a few weeks since we were celebrating three of our most promising amateurs in Kajal Mistry, Wilco Nienaber and Jayden Schaper lifting the SA Amateur and SA Stroke Play titles, yet the reality is that we are just two months away from the 2020 edition of the tournaments.

The year may have flown past, but it was filled with unprecedented success for your elite golfers – both locally and internationally. It gives me so much pleasure to see our young golfers succeed against the world’s best players and there are many individuals and organisations that have contributed to their success. It is clear to me that our strength is in our unity – and the sum of all our parts – together with our collective dedication to making this game bigger and better.

Businessman Johann Rupert has invested a large amount of money to create the GolfRSA National Squad, and this generous donation has directly resulted in international playing opportunities for our top amateurs. These elite golfers all have strong support structures in their own coaches and/or academies that continue to guide them on their path to success.

For most, this path begins at a young age and our golf clubs provide wonderful courses and environments for these youngsters to learn to play and love the game. Club competitions lay the groundwork for competitive development, while our golfing unions run world-class tournaments across the country for our kids to cut their teeth in.

Nomads has been a wonderful partner to GolfRSA for many years, providing both financial and administrative support. The Sunshine Tour provides funding to development programmes, as well as junior tournaments, and also invites our budding professionals to play in some of their high profile championships, while the PGA of SA has a network of highly qualified teaching professionals who help shape the game.

At club level, we were delighted to introduce the Cape of Good Hope Wine Series this year, an event that we expect to grow from strength to strength over the next few years. Our Club Champion of Champions event was another great success and culminated in a grand final at Zebula. We hope to add to these two tournaments in the near future as we pursue our philosophy to create more opportunities and value for the average club golfer.

This year also saw the inclusion of the South African Golf Development Board and the South African Disabled Golf Association under the umbrella body of GolfRSA.  We are proud to welcome these wonderfully successful organisations into the official structures of the governing body.

All in all, it has been a hugely successful year and I look forward to an even better 2020. On behalf of GolfRSA, I would like to wish everyone a joyous time with family and friends.

Grant Hepburn
CEO GolfRSA

Please see below for a recap of some of the shining moments for amateur golf in 2019.

2019 INTERNATIONAL VICTORIES

Toyota Junior Golf World Cup
GolfRSA Junior Proteas wins the title with a record-setting 41-under total.
Sam Simpson 1st Boys Individual

All-Africa Junior Golf Challenge in Botswana
GolfRSA Junior Proteas Boys Team win for 21st time
GolfRSA Junior Proteas Girls Team win for 3rd successive time
Sam Simpson 1st Boys Individual Competition
Caitlyn Macnab 1st Girls Individual Competition

Africa Region V Golf Tournament in Namibia
South Africa wins for 23nd time
Jayden Schaper wins Individual Competition

Regional All-Africa Challenge Trophy in Swaziland
South Africa wins 13th title
Zethu Myeki 1st Individual Competition

All Africa Golf Team Championship in Mauritius
South Africa wins 9th successive title
Jayden Schaper 1st Individual Competition

East of Ireland Amateur Championship in Ireland
Winner Martin Vorster

Reply Italian International Under-16 Championship
Winner Amilkar Bhana

Junior North and South at Pinehurst
Winner Tyran Snyders (first South African winner)

Junior Players Championship at TPC Sawgrass
Winner Jayden Schaper (first South African winner)

Triad Junior Amateur, hosted by the Tarheel Youth Golf Association
Winner Ryan van Velzen

South African Juniors International
Jordan Rothman

US Collegiate Circuit

Symone Henriques (Daytona State College) – winner Stetson Hatter Fall Classic
Jovan Rebula (Auburn University) – winner Southeastern Conference and Kaiwah Classic

OTHER
Big Easy IGT Challenge Tour and IGT Challenge Tour
Yurav Premlall (youngest winner at age 15) – winner #2 at Observatory Golf Club.
Werner Deyzel – winner #4 Chase to Sunshine Tour at Services Golf Club
Xander Basson – winner #7 Chase to Sunshine Tour at Services Golf Club

INTERNATIONAL AND LOCAL HIGHLIGHTS

2019 SOUTH AFRICAN OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP, HOSTED BY THE CITY OF JOBURG
4 amateurs made the halfway cut – Jovan Rebula (T24 and Freddie Tait Cup winner), Deon Germishuys (T43), Yurav Premlall (T43) and Wilco Nienaber (T54).
At 15 years and five months, Premlall became the youngest amateur to qualify for, and make the 36-hole cut, in the history of the event.

SA WOMEN’S AMATEUR STROKE PLAY & MATCH PLAY CHAMPIONSHIPS
GolfRSA Elite Squad member Kajal Mistry claimed the eighth calendar ‘double crown’ in history with back-to-back victories in the Womens Golf South Africa flagship events at Woodhill Residential Estate and Country Club.

JUNIOR PRESIDENTS CUP
Five GolfRSA National Squad members – Jayden Schaper, Martin Vorster, Sam Simpson, Christo Lamprecht and Jordan Duminy – qualified on the Official World Amateur Golf Rankings for the 2019 edition in Australia. The SA juniors contributed 6 of the 11 points for the International Team.

ANNIKA INVITATIONAL USA
GolfRSA Elite Squad member Kayiuree Moodley tied for the lead at the end of regulation play at the World Golf Village. The 2018 South African Youth Olympian lost in a three-way play-off to Ingrid Lindblad from Sweden.

ASTOR TROPHY
South Africa’s number 1 ranked Caitlyn Macnab led fellow GolfRSA Elite Squad members Kaleigh Telfer, Kaylah Williams and Kiera Floyd to a joint second place finish in Canada, marking the country’s best performance to date in the quadrennial championship against Canada, Australia, Great Britain and Ireland and New Zealand.

JUAN CARLOS TAILHADE CUP
GolfRSA Proteas Luca Filippi and Kyle de Beer continued South Africa’s proud legacy with a top four finish in the team competition at Los Lagartos Country Club.

AUGUSTA WOMEN’S AMATEUR
GolfRSA Elite Squad member Kaleigh Telfer closed out a top 12 finish in the inaugural Augusta National Women’s Amateur at Augusta National.

ATI CIPUTRA GOLFPRENEUR JUNIOR WORLD 2019
Kieron van Wyk closed out a joint runner-up finish in the Overall Boys Competition & the Boys Class A (ages 15-18), GolfRSA B-Squad duo Megan Streicher and Samantha Whateley tied for third & 16th the Girls Class A (ages 15-18) respectively.
GolfRSA National Squad member Rori Nkosi was 4th in the Boys Class B (ages 13-14) and combined with fellow South African Golf Development Board member Van Wyk to finish 3rd in the Boys Team event in Jakarta.

SUNSHINE LADIES TOUR
GolfRSA Elite Squad member Kajal Mistry competed in seven of the nine events and won five leading amateur prizes. She finished the season ranked fourth on the 2019 Investec Order of Merit after five top 10s, including two runner-up finishes.

ST ANDREWS JUNIOR LADIES AND BOYS OPENS
GolfRSA Elite Squad member Jordan Rothman and fellow Western Province golfer Ayden Senger both reached the finals at St Andrews. Rothman lost 3 & 2 and Senger was beaten by the same margin by the Stroke Play Qualifier winner.

DUKE OF YORK YOUNG CHAMPIONS TROPHY
In this combined boys and girls championship, GolfRSA National Squad member Sam Simpson finished T10 overall in testing weather conditions at Royal Portrush.

R & A GIRLS AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIP
GolfRSA Elite Squad members Caitlyn Macnab, Kiera Floyd and Jordan Rothman qualified in the top 64 for the Match Play at Penmure Golf Club Scotland. Ekurhuleni’s Floyd reached the Round of 16.

OLD BOYS
Former number 1 ranked Garrick Higgo picked up his maiden professional victory on the Big Easy IGT Challenge Tour. He backed it up with a Sunshine Tour breakthrough at the Sun City Challenge and earned his card for the 2020 Challenge Tour alongside 2019 SA Amateur champion and fellow GolfRSA National Squad member Wilco Nienaber.

GOLFRSA MULTIPLE WINNERS (* First-time Winner)

JUNIORS
SA Number 1-ranked Caitlyn Macnab
Eastern Province Border Championship; North West Womens Open; Gauteng North Womens Open; Mpumalanga Womens Championship; Nomads SA Girls Championship; KwaZulu-Natal Junior Championship; Individual winner in the SA Women’s Inter-Provincial Seeding Round & WGSA 72-Hole Team Championship.
SA Number 1-ranked Jayden Schaper
South African Stroke Play Championship; Free State Open; ProShop Northern Amateur Open Qualifier; Ekurhuleni Open; Bobby Locke; Western Province Amateur Qualification; Nomads National Order of Merit Inland 1
Samantha Whateley
*KwaZulu-Natal Championship (2-way tie); Limpopo Ladies Championship
Kaylah Williams
Nomads SA Girls Rose Bowl, KwaZulu-Natal Championship (2-way tie); ProShop Gauteng Open; Nomads Gauteng Junior Open.
Megan Streicher
*Boland Ladies Golf Open; SA High Schools Championship individual winner
Jordan Rothman
WP Junior Girls Championship, South African Juniors International (girls)
Yurav Premlall
Harry Oppenheimer Trophy; KwaZulu-Natal Match Play; Nomads National Order of Merit Coastal 1
Sam Simpson
Nomads SA Boys U-19 Stroke Play Qualifier; Boland Amateur Stroke Play Championship; KwaZulu-Natal Amateur Qualifier (3-way tie)
Jordan Duminy
*Nomads SA Boys U-17 Championship; Cape Town Junior Open; Southern Cape Open
Martin Vorster
Western Province Amateur Match Play Championship; Limpopo Stroke Play Championship
Casey Jarvis
Silver Salver; Central Gauteng Open, Joburg Junior Open

OPEN AMATEURS
Zethu Myeki
Northern Cape Open; Free State Open; Ekurhuleni Womens Open
Kajal Mistry
SA Women’s Amateur Stroke Play Championship; SA Women’s Amateur Match Play Championship
Ben van Wyk
*Nomads SA Boys U-19 Match Play; Nomads National Order of Merit Coastal 2
Kyle de Beer
EP / Border Stroke Play; KwaZulu-Natal Amateur Qualifier (3-way tie)
Luca Filippi
Proudfoot champion (SA Amateur Qualifier); Northern Cape Open
Wilco Nienaber
Free State Open; SA Amateur Championship

MID-AMATEURS
Vicki Traut
SA Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship; *39th Ackerman Championship
Nina Grey
*Boland Mid-Amateur; Ekurhuleni Mid-Amateur
Liezl Smit
EP/Border Mid-Amateur & Senior Championship, Gauteng North Mid-Amateur & Senior Championship, KwaZulu-Natal Mid-Amateur Championship (2-way tie)
Sandra Winter
WP Women’s Mid-Amateur & Senior Championship; KwaZulu-Natal Mid-Amateur & Senior Championship (2-way tie)
Sonja Bland
Southern Cape Mid-Amateur & Senior Championship; Cenotec Gauteng Mid-Amateur & Senior Championship
Ryan Dreyer
Central Gauteng Mid-Amateur Open; Gauteng North Mid-Amateur Open
Gerlou Roux
Highveld Mid-Amateur Open; Free State Mid-Amateur Open
Derek Scullard
SA Mid-Amateur Championship; KZN Mid-Amateur Open

SENIORS
Craig Kamps
North West Senior Open; Vaal Senior Open; North West Senior Open
Andre van Dyk
Senior Players Championship; Cape Winelands Senior Amateur; Southern Cape Senior Open
Francois le Roux
Fancourt Senior Open; Eastern Cape Senior Open
Jock Wellington
Border Senior Open; Lowveld Senior Classic

FIRST TIME WINNERS

JUNIORS
Jonathan Wilsenach – Gowrie Farm U-15 Challenge
Kian Rose – Nomads National Order of Merit Inland 2
Reinhardt Uys – Sun City U-13 Challenge
Jordan Wessels – Sun City U-15 Challenge
Christiaan Maas – Dimension Data Junior Open
Jack Buchanan – Dimension Data Junior Open U-15 Challenge
Nikhil Rama – Friends of Engelberg, hosted by Anna Becker-Frankel
Kyle Kistensamy – Nomads North and South Junior Championship
Janko van der Merwe – Ernie Els SA Primary School Championship individual winner

OPEN AMATEURS
Christiaan Burke – ProShop Northern Amateur Open Championship Match Play
Wade Jacobs – North West Open
Nikhil Gopal – KwaZulu-Natal Stroke Play Championship
Francois van der Walt – KwaZulu-Natal Amateur Qualifier (3-way tie)
Nikhil Gopal – KwaZulu-Natal Stroke Play Championship
Rigardt Albertse – Mpumalanga Open

MID-AMATEURS
Heidi van der Bergh – Free State Mid-Amateur
Christopher Snyman – Border Mid-Amateur Open
Dylan Germshuys – Eastern Province Mid-Amateur Open
Johan Geldenhuys – Sterling Access Limpopo Mid-Amateur Open
Rowan du Preez – Southern Cape Mid-Amateur Open
Geoffrey van der Merwe – Northern Cape Mid-Amateur Open
Mark Beattie – Western Province Mid-Amateur Open
Adrian Ford – Boland Mid-Amateur Open

SENIORS
Johann Nel – Free State Senior Amateur
Graeme Watson – Central Gauteng Senior Open
Craig Poulton – Western Province Senior Open
James Dougan – Boland Senior Open
Richard Brooker – KZN Senior Classic
Ian Espitalier Noel – KZN Senior Open
Greg Woodbridge – WP Senior Masters
Attie Burger – Eastern Province Senior Open
Johan Krugel – Mpumalanga Senior Open
GR Forman – KZN Senior Spring Open
Mark O’Brien – Ekurhuleni Senior Open
Brian Naidoo – Otway Hayes Senior Classic