Scots beat SA at home

South Africa’s top amateurs failed to take the sting out of a home defeat at the Leopard Trophy earlier this year when they lost 11 – 7 to the Scots in a two-day test at Western Gailes Golf Club on Thursday.

The Scots took a two point lead at 5.5 – 3.5 into the second day and held their edge after a win, loss and halve each in the morning foursomes.

The South Africans fought vehemently to cancel the deficit in the afternoon singles, but the Scots proved too strong at home.

NJ Arnoldi and Louis Taylor combined to beat Bradley Neil and Jamie Savage 3 & 1 for South Africa’s only win in the foursomes.

Taylor carried his winning run to victory against Savage in the singles to claw back a point for South Africa after Arnoldi went down 2 & 1 to James Ross.

Reigning SA Stroke Play champion Jason Smith went head-to-head with former Scottish Boys champion Neil, but lost the battle 2 & 1.

South African number one, Christiaan Bezuidenhout, once again stemmed the bleeding and underlined his value in the team when he knocked out Jack McDonald 5 & 3 for another crucial point.

However the final two matches both went the way of the hosts.

Two-time Sanlam SA Amateur champion and recent Lytham Trophy winner Thriston Lawrence lost to Zander Culverwell at the last hole, while Scott Gibson put an exclamation mark on Scotland’s victory when he defeated Zander Lombard 1-up.

National coach Llewellyn van Leeuwen said the Test was a superb challenge for the players and the experience will boost their chances at the upcoming British Amateur Championship next week.

“They played as a team and for each other,” the Tuksgolf Club and Academies head coach and technical director said.

“Over the two days, the Scots had the upper hand, however, this is a very talented group of players never gave up. I enjoyed seeing the camaraderie on and off the course and the spirit with which they supported each other.

“Playing against some of Scotland’s finest players will serve them well at The Amateur.”

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

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