SA team off to solid start at Africa Zone VI Champs
The South African team made a solid start to their title defence at this year’s Africa Zone VI Golf Championships at Lilongwe Golf Club in Malawi with positive results in all eight opening singles matches.
Soweto’s Musi Nethunzwi and Benoni’s Gert Myburgh enjoyed a dream start in their debut for South Africa, with Nethunzwi beating his Tanzanian opponent 7&6 while Myburgh took care of his opposite number from Zambia with a 2&1 victory.
Reigning South African Stroke Play champion Haydn Porteous beat his Namibian adversary 2&1, while the country’s number three ranked player, Zander Lombard, beat his Malawian challenger 6&4.
CJ du Plessis, the only member from the victorious 2011 side, won his game against Kenya 5&3 while Southern Cape’s Shaun Smith claimed a 5&3 win over Zimbabwe.
Drikus Bruyns won his game against Mauritius 4&3 and JP Strydom brought home the final victory for the home side with a 2&1 win over Mozambique.
The 2012 Africa Zone VI Golf Championship attracted 10 countries in addition to the defending champions and hosts Malawi, the other teams being Kenya, Namibia, Mauritius, Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
“I think we reaped the rewards of a team that was strong from one to eight,” said South African Golf Association president, Colin Burger.
“Every player on the team worked hard to secure a victory. I’m sure the team won’t mind if I give Musi and Gert a special mention, though. They were both pretty nervous ahead of their debut for South Africa but they coped very well with the pressure of this international championship. Gert fought hard, especially coming down the stretch, to win his match against Zambia, and Musi was equally impressive, scoring a decisive victory over Tanzania.”
Burger said they spent their time on the pairings ahead of the Betterball and Foursomes on Wednesday.
“We achieved a whitewash today, but there are a couple of strong teams in the championship this year. We studied our combinations carefully, to ensure that we give ourselves the strongest possible chance to win all our matches. It is still early days in the competition, but the players complement each other, they are all in good form and very hungry to win. We are quietly confident after such a roaring start.”