SA on track for 17th All-Africa Junior title

SAteamwalk_GNGULUSAKA, Zambia (7 May 2015) – South Africa has lined up their 17th successive title in the All-Africa Junior Golf Championships with another impressive performance in Thursday’s third round at Lusaka Golf Club.

After a disappointing start to his campaign in Zambia, Herman Loubser from Boland showed marked improvement in the second round and hit his stride on day three, leading the South African challenge with a two-under-par 71.

Marco Steyn from Gauteng North dipped one under par and Keegan de Lange from Gauteng North added a 74 for a second successive 217.

South Africa leads on 652 and will carry a 44 stroke lead over Zimbabwe into the final round.

“Herman played really nicely,” said national coach Llewellyn van Leeuwen. “Better course management and putting delivered an all-round good performance.

“Marco was very good tee to green and was a little frustrated not to have posted a lower score, but remarked after his round that he needs to stay positive and patient. Another solid performance from him.

“Keegan let a decent round slip to finish one over, but he has such a great attitude and work ethic, that I know he’ll bounce back with a low one again.”

Dylan Naidoo fought back for an impressive two over 75 after the Central Gauteng junior signed for an expensive nine at the second hole.

“Dylan learned a valuable lesson regarding hitting a provisional,” Van Leeuwen explained.

“Unfortunately spotter at the second took a tea break. Dylan pushed his tee shot left, and guessed he was about five meter into the left rough. After searching for three minutes, he thought he could run back to the tee to hit a provisional, while rest of his fourball continued searching for the last two minutes.

“His second tee shot landed an inch from the first ball. His markers were happy that he was still within the five minutes allowed to search for a lost ball, and he went on to play.

“Under the provisional ball rule, Dylan should have hit the provisional immediately after his first tee shot veered left and into trouble. However, because he returned to the tee and hit a second shot, the second ball was now in play and the first ball was technically lost.

“This meant that Dylan not only was penalized for the lost ball, but incurred a further two shot penalty for playing the wrong ball. All credit to Dylan, though, because he stayed calm in the situation and and fought back valiantly to make a non-counting 75.”

Meanwhile, the fight for second – and the coveted second spot in the Junior Golf World Cup in Japan later this year – will come down to a battle of wills between Zimbabwe and Zambia for a second year running.

Both teams posted third round scores of 230, but Zimbabwe will carry a five stroke edge on 696 into the final 18 holes.

652 South Africa 218 217 217
696 Zimbabwe 232 234 230
701 Zambia 238 233 230
716 Kenya 237 240 239
733 Swaziland 245 240 248
749 Tunisia 252 244 253
750 Uganda 249 252 249
758 Namibia 258 246 254
786 Botswana 268 259 259
791 Mauritius 257 280 254

PHOTO – The South African team will carry a 44 stroke lead into the final round of the All-Africa Junior Golf Championship at Lusaka Golf Club; credit SAGA