Gorlei keeps Sanlam SA Women’s Stroke Play bid on course

Cara Gorlei claimed her third podium finish this season when she edged out local favourite Lizzie Currie by two strokes for the KwaZulu-Natal Stroke Play Championship title at Beachwood on Sunday.

The victory in the Stroke Play marked a third title for the Western Province number one, following the Eastern Province Match Play Championship in early February and the Pam Golding Properties WGWP Amateur Match Play Championship a fortnight ago.

Gorlei is leaving for the United States in August to take up a golf scholarship at the University of Arkansas, but before she departs her native South Africa, the 19-year-old Milnerton golfer is targeting the Sanlam SA Women’s Stroke Play Championship next month.

In addition to the three victories, Gorlei has not finished outside the top five in four provincial starts this season and she hopes to carry her current form to the winner’s circle at Glendower Golf Club.

“I am definitely going all out in my preparation for the Sanlam SA Stroke Play,” Gorlei said.

“All my victories have been very special, especially winning the Nomads SA Rosebowl and Nomads SA Girls last year. There is something very special, though, about the Sanlam SA Stroke Play or Amateur Championship. It’s one of the two most sought-after titles on the Womens Golf South Africa circuit and I am working very hard to give myself a chance to challenge.

“I have to admit I was a little worried after scrambling to a 76 in the first round at Beachwood, though.

My putter was just not cooperating. I was striking the ball really well and giving myself so many chances for birdies, but I couldn’t hole a putt for birdie if my life depended on it.”

Gorlei found the bottom of the cup in round two, though, and rallied with a three under 70 to triumph on even-par 146 to deny Currie a home victory.

The Port Shepstone golfer registered rounds of 72 and 77 to finish second, but got her just rewards when she defeated Gorlei in the ensuing Match Play championship.

“Lizzie brought everything to the final and it was a real battle of wits and determination,” Gorlei said.

“She never backed down and in the end, she endured and took the match 2 & 1.”

Chiara Contomathios (78-73) from Modderfontein tied for third on five over 151 alongside Kaleigh Telfer (73-78) from Bryanston in the Stroke Play Championship, while Border Stroke Play Championship winner Zethu Myeki was in the mix again.

The Ernie Els and Fancourt Foundation player finished in fifth on 154 with successive rounds of 77.

Chloe Royston from Cotswold Downs carded rounds of 86 and 84 to edge out Lydia Muhl from Durban Country Club, Charmaine Stone from Amanzimtoti and Mount Edgecombe’s Judy Goss for the B-Division title on a winning score of 170.

Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of Womens Golf South Africa.

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