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Ken Borland

Bregman eager to mount strong defence of title

Posted on May 31, 2024 by Ken

The Sunshine Ladies Tour returns to the Western Cape this week with the Standard Bank Ladies Open at Royal Cape Golf Club and stalwart Stacy Bregman is eager to continue the steady improvement she has shown this season and mount a strong defence of her title.

Bregman claimed her sixth Sunshine Ladies Tour title in April last year when she won the tournament at Royal Johannesburg and Kensington’s West Course, beating Lee-Anne Pace in a playoff. She began this year’s campaign by missing the cut in the Dimension Data Pro-Am at Fancourt, but then finished tied-38th in the SuperSport Ladies Challenge at Lost City and then tied-19th in last week’s Fidelity ADT Ladies Challenge at Blue Valley Golf Estate, where she was in contention for the title before shooting 75 in the final round.

The 37-year-old Bregman says her game is really starting to come together.

“I do feel like I’m starting to find the keys to my game again, even though I wasn’t playing that well at first. But I’ve felt it coming together and my results have been getting better and better,” Bregman said.

“I’m in a good space, my game is trending in the right direction and I’m feeling good. I’ve been putting really well this year, but I could be a bit better off the tees.

“And you’ve got to be good off the tees at Royal Cape, because it’s quite tight and old-school. It’s about positioning yourself and putting well, but it gets really tricky, especially if there are winds, if you’re not in the right positions,” Bregman said.

Royal Cape is the oldest golf course in South Africa and much restoration work has been done in recent years with the original design of Charles Murray and the indigenous landscape at front of mind. The course is built on sandy fynbos plains, but hectares of the endemic Cape Flats vegetation has been lost to the pressures of urbanisation, so Royal Cape have embarked on a program of bolstering the endangered locally-adapted flora.

Although relatively flat, Royal Cape is a challenging course that has 58 bunkers and six holes that feature water. The parklands layout, with Table Mountain looming over it, is exposed to the famous Cape Doctor, the south-easterly wind which is a near-constant obstacle when it comes to finding the tree-lined fairways. It has hosted the South African Open for men 10 times.

The Sunshine Ladies Tour has seen strong competition this season with three different winners thus far – Kylie Henry, Tvesa Malik and Helen Kreuzer – and all three of them are in the field again this week.

The trio come from Scotland, India and Germany respectively, showing the greater interest from overseas that the tour is generating. But South Africa also has some amazing talents to keep an eye on and Kiera Floyd, Gabrielle Venter, Nicole Garcia, Cara Gorlei, Tandi McCallum, Nadia van der Westhuizen and Bregman herself are all capable of winning the R600 000 Standard Bank Ladies Open.

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