SA IPT kicks off with a day of surprises

Ekurhuleni rolled over the defending champions, Central Gauteng turned the tables on the local favourites and Boland claimed revenge in the first round of the 54th South African Inter-Provincial at Westlake Golf Club on Monday.

Twelve months after they raced to promotion in Rustenburg, Ekurhuleni produced the strong start manager Gavan Levenson hoped for with a 7-5 result against Gauteng North.

The teams were tied 2-all after the Foursomes, but winning performances from Stefan Cronje, Jason Froneman and rookies Bryce McCabe, Paul Boshoff and Tristen Strydom in the Singles left the rest of the field in no doubt about Ekurhuleni’s intentions this week.

“It’s always great to get your foot in the door on the first day,” said Levenson, a SA IPT veteran who served on victorious Southern Transvaal teams from 1974 to 1978.

“It was by no means an easy day out there. Three of our games went right down to the wire. It was tight, but the result has stoked the fires.

“It’s a great start, but you don’t win the SA IPT on the first day. There is still a lot of work to be done.”

Western Province and Central Gauteng also finished the foursomes in a stalemate but, against the odds, the young charges from Central dominated the Singles to win 7-5.

Rookies Marco Steyn and David Meyers both won 3&2, while Andi Dill, Darren de Smidt and Matthew Spacey reeled in three more points to carry Central to victory.

“The guys were incredibly motivated and they stepped up to the plate,” said skipper Louis Taylor, who was smarting slightly after a 7&6 drubbing from Province number one, Altin van der Merwe.

“We started on the back foot last year, so this is a good turnaround for us. There is no better way to start the week than to get the first win under the belt on the first day.”

Boland took a 3-1 lead in the Foursomes and a very determined Philip Spies rallied the troops in the Singles to secure a bittersweet 8-4 victory over Southern Cape.

“A year ago, Southern Cape beat us 9-3 in the first round,” Spies said.

“I think it was still in the back of our minds combined, but we’ve put the gremlins to bed now.”

Meyer Pauw, Jaco Spies, Pierre du Villiers, Karl Osche and Herman Loubser pulled through for the side, while Jovan Rebula, Nicholas Mitchell and Ivan Williams emerged victorious for Southern Cape.

Spies, Loubser, Osche and De Villiers also performed superbly in the foursomes alongside with Armandt Scholtz and Trevor Mahoney, who combined for 2&1 win.

“I’m very happy with the Foursomes, because pairings are always a bit of a gamble, especially at the start of the championship,” Spies said.

“Our combinations stood up well against Southern Cape, and that is always a comfort in this format.”

Boland and Gauteng North will face off on Tuesday, while Central Gauteng goes up against Southern Cape in round two and Ekurhuleni will battle host union, Western Province.

Gauteng North 5.0 vs Ekurhuleni 7.0
Western Province 5.0 vs Central Gauteng 7.0
Southern Cape 4.0 vs Boland 8.0

(Pos-Union-Played-Won-Drawn-Lost-Points-Matches won)
1 Boland (1, 1, 0, 0, 2, 8.0)
T2 Central Gauteng (1, 1, 0, 0, 2, 7.0)
T2 Ekurhuleni (1, 1, 0, 0, 2, 7.0)
T4 Gauteng North (1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 5.0)
T4 Western Province (1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 5.0)
6 Southern Cape (1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 4.0)

For the full results, click HERE

Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of the South African Golf Association.

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