Taylor breaks through at Northern Amateur

SA Amateur cut short with his first podium finish at the Northern Amateur Match Play on Friday.

Taylor, who defeated fellow Springbok Tertius van den Berg 2&1 in the 36-hole final at Randpark Golf Club, was thrilled to lay his hands on his first piece of silverware.

“This really makes up for the disappointment of the Sanlam SA Amateur,” the Harrismith golfer gushed. “It felt good to win and to do it here in my home union made it extra special.

“I’ve worked really hard on my consistency over the last 12 months. It’s great to see it finally pay off.”

The country’s number four has been in threatening form this season and the breakthrough victory has certainly been on the cards since his stellar performance for South Africa during the inaugural Ten Nations Cup at Kingswood in early February.

A fortnight ago, Taylor reached the semi-finals of the prestigious Sanlam SA Amateur at Country Club Johannesburg, but his campaign to win at his home course was derailed when he was knocked out in the semi-finals by 16-year-old Mpumalanga teenager, Thriston Lawrence, the eventual winner of the prestigious title.

A week later, the 23-year-old was back in top form and made a huge contribution to the victorious South African side that claimed third victory against a Scottish Golf Union Mens National Squad side at Leopard Creek.

Taylor said that after a mediocre performance in the Stroke Play, it was touch and go before he made the top 32 field for the Northern Amateur Match Play.

“I had a long wait to see if I would make the top 32, because I shot five over par in the 36-hole qualifier and tied for 31st, but I just managed to squeeze in,” he said.

“I forgot about it straightway. From that point on it was just a matter of getting through each match.”

On his way to the final, Taylor defeated Scotland’s Jamie Savage 6&5, Centurion’s Aubrey Barnard 4&3 and Werner van Niekerk from Wingate and Glendower’s Jaco Mouton 4&3 in the semi-final.

Taylor said his goal this season has been to achieve greater consistency, but with his first win under the belt, he is now hunting a national open title.

“I’m happy with the results I’m producing and really relieved to get the monkey off my back,” he said. “I still want to work on my consistency, but one of my big goals going forward will be to break through on national level this season.”

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