Flanagan fires in Windhoek

South Africa’s Demi Flanagan will lead the South African team into battle in the Regional All-Africa Challenge Trophy after a superb victory in the Bank Windhoek Namibia Amateur Ladies Stroke Play Championship on the weekend.

The Border player fired an opening three-under-par 69 to take a three stroke lead at the breath-taking Omeya Golf Estate in Windhoek and led by three strokes from local favourite Caro Els.

Flanagan closed with a 71 in Sunday’s final round to triumph on four-under-par 140, finishing three clear of Els, who signed off with a 71.

South Africa’s Cara Gorlei was slightly disappointed after a first round 74, but the Western Province number one rallied for third on even-par after a solid two under 70 in the final round.

“We are all extremely proud of Demi’s victory in her international debut,” said Womens Golf South Africa president Karen Olivant.

“She took a three shot lead into the final round and dealt with the pressure really well to maintain her lead to win by three strokes.

“Cara came back strong in the second round and her score could have been even better, but for two eagle putts that lipped out. Shawnelle (de Lange) battled a stomach bug but she hung in there and produce rounds of 78 and 75.”

Olivant said the opportunity to tee it up in the championship afforded the players the chance to get to know the layout and get battle ready for the Regional All-Africa Challenge Trophy.

“The Omeya course is in pristine condition and the girls enjoyed the chance to become acquainted with the layout,” Olivant said.

“There are a couple of driveable par-fours and one very long par-five and the girls had the chance to work on their course management ahead of the RAACT. We also enjoyed watching the 85-year-old Mrs Serfontein and 84-year-old Mrs Howard hit the opening tee shots Augusta style, with the difference that the oldest Namibian amateurs actually competed as well.”

The South African trio will aim to chase down South Africa’s fifth successive title in the prestigious event against Namibia, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Lesotho and Botswana.

Els from Rossmund, Omeya’s Thea Groenewald and Nadia Schmidt and Celonika Robinson from Windhoek Golf & Country Club will represent the host country in the team event.

The format is 54-hole stroke play, with two scores to count towards the team score.

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