Roux and Mowat primed for Argentinean challenge

Top amateurs Gerlou Roux and Callum Mowat are eager to take South Africa’s successful run in international championships this season outside Africa’s borders with a winning performance in two top international events in Argentina later this month.

Third ranked Roux from the Western Province and Central Gauteng’s Mowat, ranked ninth in the South African Golf Association’s national standings, will skip the South African Open Championship in favour of chasing down glory in South America from 14 – 24 November.

The pair will first aim to extend South Africa’s fine record at the Juan Carlos Tailhade Cup and then compete in the Argentine Amateur Championship at the Martindale Country Club.

Former Masters champion Trevor Immelman and multiple Sunshine Tour winner Ulrich van den Berg scored South Africa’s first victory in the Tailhade in 1999. In 2008, reigning Sanlam SA Amateur champion Ryan Dreyer partnered top ranked JG Claassen to the country’s second triumph in the prestigious championship.

Jared Harvey and Graham van der Merwe rallied for a third place finish in 2011 and Drikus Bruyns and CJ du Plessis produced a strong performance in the final round last year to tie for fourth.

South African Golf Association president Andre Pieterse believes Roux and Mowat are definitely up for the challenge ahead.

“They were both instrumental in national team victories this season, including the Test against a Scottish Golf Union team at Leopard Creek in March, South Africa’s 13th back-to-back victory in the Africa Zone VI Golf Championships at Windhoek Golf and Country Club in April and our seventh consecutive victory in the African Amateur Golf Teams Championship in Swaziland last month,” Pieterse said.

“In their personal capacities, both Gerlou and Callum claimed several titles this season and both are in-form and ready for action.”

Former professional Roux from Bellville Golf Club posted six top five finishes on the open amateur circuit, including four runner-up finishes, while Mowat from Modderfontein reeled in seven top 10 finishes and collected the silverware at the North West Amateur in March, the Southern Cape Open in August and the Swaziland Amateur Open Championship last month.

Mowat said he and Roux feel incredibly honoured to have been selected to represent the country in Argentina this year.

“Christiaan (Bezuidenhout), Zander (Lombard), Louis (Taylor), NJ (Arnoldi) and Thriston (Lawrence) will fly the flag for the SAGA at the SA Open, and we will fly the flag for South Africa in Argentina,” the 21-year-old said.

“It is such an incredible honour for both of us. We have played together a few times this year, we get along great and I think we complement each other well. We are both real fighters and proudly South African, so we will fight very hard to bring home the trophies.”

Roux added that their recent success in Swaziland has further strengthened their resolve to win.

“Our national teams have had an incredible season and Callum and I will give our best effort to continue the winning run,” he said. “We showed our determination to come from behind and win in Swaziland and we will take that same attitude to Argentina.

“We are both booking to finish this season on a high note.”

Both Argentinean championship annually draws entries from countries including Canada, Holland, England, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Finland, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, Peru, Colombia, the United States and Uruguay, while at least 70 local golfers also compete in the Individual Competition alongside the selected Argentinean team.

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