Rebula leads SA Juniors at Curro World Junior
Reigning Nomads SA Boys U-17 champion Jovan Rebula will lead a strong South African contingent in the Curro SA Junior International, which tees off at Langebaan Country Estate on Tuesday.
The country’s number two ranked junior and his South African peers will showcase their talents at the Gary Player-designed layout on the West Coast against a line-up of top golfers from 13 countries, including Australia, Austria, Denmark, England, Germany, Iceland, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, South Korea, Sweden, the United States and Zimbabwe..
The Curro SA Junior International marks the fourth year that South Africa hosts one of the four tournaments that constitute the World Junior Golf Tournament Series (WJGTS), but the first year in which Curro has taken the name sponsorship.
The WJGTS launched in 2009 and carries world ranking points for the Royal & Ancient World Amateur Rankings and the World Junior Rankings. All entrants are aged between of 12 and 19.
Rebula finished fourth in 2012 and took a sixth place last year. The 16-year-old from the Southern Cape hopes to go the full distance in Langebaan this week.
“The top South African junior earns an all-expenses paid trip to the RB German Juniors this year,” Rebula said. “The RB German Junior the final event in the WJGTS and I definitely want to give myself a shot at the prize. I’ve heard some great things about the tournament from other juniors that have competed in Germany in the past.”
The George golfer comes into the 54-hole event on the back of a solid run in recent weeks.
Following victory at the Nomads National Order of Merit event at Royal Durban Golf Club and a third place finish at Pollak Park in the Dr Bam in January, Rebula served on the victorious SA Junior team that defeated a junior French side in a Test at Serengeti Golf & Wildlife Estate in early February.
He was a member of the SA Junior side that triumphed in the annual Triangular against Scotland and the South African Golf Development Board at Randpark Golf Club two weeks later.
Just a week ago, Rebula lifted the prestigious Proudfoot Trophy as the winner of the stroke play qualifier at Hermanus Golf Club in the South African Golf Association’s flagship event, the Sanlam SA Amateur Championship.
Rebula is anxious to get his first look at the Langebaan course in today’s practice round.
“I’ve never played the course, but I’ve heard some great things about the design and layout,” he said. “I always enjoy playing at the coast, so I’m looking forward to the tournament. The WGJTS events are also always very well run.
“I’m definitely not going to get ahead of myself, though. Sometimes you can come into a tournament with great form, but something small can go wrong with your swing or with putting stroke and you are on the back foot.
“I don’t like having too many expectations, though. I prefer to take things one hole at a time.”
Nomads South Africa, the main benefactor of junior golf in South Africa, has partnered with Curro in endorsing the event, along with the South African Golf Association (SAGA) and Women’s Golf South Africa (WGSA).
Nomads Golf Coordinator, Ken Walker, was especially pleased that this year’s event will also see at least 10 players from the South African Golf Development Board (SAGDB) tee it up the tournament.
“We welcomed the chance to endorse this tournament and partner with Curro on the SA Junior International,” Walker said.
“We see this as an ideal opportunity to assist the South African Golf Development Board players that would never be afforded the opportunity to compete with their international peers. The experience the 10 young players Nomads have assisted, will stay with them forever.
Curro CEO, Dr. Chris van der Merwe, said the group of schools is proud to be associated as the naming sponsor.
“Through the Curro SA Juniors International we are dedicated to create sustainable international platforms for South Africa’s junior golf players. The Curro SA Juniors International will build the confidence of the South African junior golfers, and will simultaneously prepare them for a great future.
“We are proud of our involvement in this world-class event and hope it provides the perfect platform to promote good citizenship, lifelong global friendships and one of the best practical learning experiences on the sports field.”