SA team face France in Bordeaux

Four of South Africa’s top ranked mid-amateur golfers will be hunting glory against France in a two-day Test ahead of the prestigious International Team Mid-Amateur Championship at the Golf Du Medoc Resort near Bordeaux from 17-19 July.

Gerlou Roux, Josef Fourie, Elton James and Steve Williams will face the host nation in the curtain-raiser on Wednesday and Thursday.

The format of the Test will be 36 holes of Foursomes and Betterball at the Vignes Course in round one and Singles at the championship Chateaux Course on Thursday.

The team and SAGA president Gerhard Conradie arrived at the Medoc Hotel & Spa Golf Club at the weekend and quartet was able to pack in three practice rounds in preparation for the impending battle against France.

Western Province’s James said the Vignes Course features long holes and cleverly placed hazards that forces golfers to put a prime on accuracy and golf course management.

“The course bears a strong resemblance to Pearl Valley,” said the 2015 SA Mid-Amateur Stroke Play Championship runner-up.

“It is very well bunkered and long off the tips. Being aggressive helps, but it brings a lot of bunkers into play. If you play it safe, though, you are hitting a lot of four- and five-irons into the greens, and you have to constantly adjust your game plan.

“The course has a very links-like feel to it and imagination is key around here.”

Williams from Central Gauteng agreed and described the Vignes course as a very good test of golf.

“This layout demands good ball striking,” Williams said.

“The greens are huge and very undulating. You are left with testy putts on almost every hole and there are no straightforward holes.

“This course keeps you busy and on your toes all the time.”

The team look forward to further acquaint themselves with the par-71 championship Chateaux course on Thursday, which will also host the International Team Mid-Amateur Championship.

“The Chateaux course is pure Scottish Links tradition,” James said.

“It’s a par-71 and measures 6,576 meters. The fairways are very broad and lined with a variety of thick, long grasses. It’s a real technical challenge with most of the greens exposed to ocean winds and it requires accuracy and inventive strokes.”

PHOTO – The South African Mid-Amateur team will hunt down a victory against the French in a two-day Test at the Golf Du Medoc Resort near Bordeaux in France.
From left to right – Gerlou Roux and Elton James (Western Province), Steve Williams (Central Gauteng), SAGA President Gerhard Conradie and Josef Fourie (Free State); credit SAGA.

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

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