Just rewards for Joshua

13 January 2022 – Joshua Koekemoer got the win he has been trending towards for the past two seasons when he wrapped up the Nomads Inland Order of Merit event at Benoni Country Club in fine style.

The Silver Lakes junior, now ranked fourth in the South African Under-19 rankings, powered to a four-shot victory over Randpark’s Johan Bredenhamp, who held the overnight lead. His final round 66 included a solitary bogey offset by seven birdies.

“Everything just came together nicely for me today,” said Koekemoer, who had three top-10 finishes in 2021. “I was really driving the ball well, my ball striking was good and I made a few putts. I missed a couple of makeable putts but that’s just how golf is. I’m really pleased with the round and the win.”

“I’ve been working so hard to get to this moment. There have been so many close calls so to finally get the win feels awesome and it means a lot to me and my coach.”

Koekemoer started the final round in third position, two shots behind Bredenkamp and one back from Buchanan.

A fast start, with three birdies in the first four holes, saw the 17-year-old join the pair at the top of the leaderboard. With nine holes to play, Bredenkamp held a two-shot lead, but he slipped from contention with bogeys on the 11th, 17th and 18th.

Meanwhile, birdies on the 10th, 13th, 16th and 17th carried Koekemoer to his first national title.

A birdie-eagle finish by Kingswood’s Keegan Schutt propelled the 15-year-old former Nomads SA U-15 Championship winner into a tie for third on two-under, alongside Jack Buchanan from Milnerton Golf Club, who shot a final round of level par 72.

GolfRSA National Squad member Fabrizio de Abreu finished in fifth, a further shot back.

209 Joshua Koekemoer 68 75 66
213 Johan Bredenkamp 72 69 72
214 Keegan Shutt 77 68 69; Jack Buchanan 69 73 72
215 Fabrizio de Abreu 76 67 72
216 Stefan Jacobs 75 70 71; Ivan Verster 71 74 71
217 Dylan Kayne 73 76 68
218 Caden Sanders 74 72 72; Janus Roberts 71 74 73
219 Daniel Bennett 77 72 70; Pearce Nash Lewin 74 72 73; Werner Potgieter 72 76 71; Pascal Gunther 70 79 70
220 Cayden Lasarow 78 70 72
221 Kayle Wykes 74 70 77; Keagan Crosbie 73 74 74
222 Jaden Deltel 77 70 75; Amilkar Bhana 76 75 71; Andries van der Vyver 73 74 75; Lyle Pedro 73 72 77; Blake Botes 72 75 75; Bernard Meyer 72 73 77