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Ken Borland

Kreuzer able to make winning birdie putt 2nd time round 0

Posted on May 13, 2024 by Ken

Helen Kreuzer was able to make the 10ft putt for birdie on the first playoff hole that she had missed shortly before in regulation play on the par-five 18th, giving the German her first professional title as she won the Fidelity ADT Ladies Challenge at the Blue Valley Golf Estate on Friday.

Kreuzer reached the 72nd hole on 12-under-par, back-to-back threes on the par-four 16th and 17th holes seeing her catch up with Tina Mazarino at the top of the leaderboard. But while the missed putt forced her to settle for par and a playoff with the Norwegian, Kreuzer was then able to take advantage of the wide fairways at the Gary Player design, and went for the green in two after a great drive, which would have pleased him.

“I hit a really good drive on the first playoff hole on 18 and decided to go for it with a three-wood. I was just off the green and I managed to get up-and-down, sinking the putt I missed for birdie during my round,” Kreuzer explained afterwards.

“It’s my first professional win so I feel amazing, the only other thing that comes close is maybe winning the national championship at college with Lynn University.”

With Mazarino producing a brilliant round of 65 to overtake those who had set the pace after the first two rounds, Kreuzer had to play at her best to catch the 23-year-old.

Kreuzer was superb on the front nine, playing in the final group with leader Ellen Hutchinson-Kay, going out in just 30 strokes. She began her round birdie-par-eagle and further birdies on the fifth, eighth and ninth holes saw her grab the lead.

But she then suffered a double setback when she bogeyed the par-four 10th and 11th holes.

“I was really on top of my game, hitting the ball close and my putter was hot. Ellen also played really well on the front nine, and it was good to be in the final group with her because that kept me going and I always felt I needed a few more birdies to get ahead of her.

“But then on 10 there was a very tough pin, I hit my approach a little long and bogey was not the end of the world there. And then on 11 a three-foot par putt just lipped out. You then have to tell yourself to stay in the moment and keep playing,” Kreuzer said.

The 25-year-old from Frankfurt certainly showed her mettle with that late pair of birdies.

“I was really excited about playing in the final group and keen to see what the day would bring. It was a great group, we had a lot of fun and all enjoyed ourselves, just taking it shot-by-shot. I was very pleased to pull through for the win. It was a big achievement, and now being able to play in the two Ladies European Tour co-sanctioned events on the Sunshine Tour is what I came for,” Kreuzer said.

While Hutchinson-Kay reached the turn on 11-under, she struggled on the back nine with bogeys on the 11th and 14th holes leaving her in third place.

Another German, Verena Gimmy, made a late charge up the leaderboard with a scintillating 64 to finish in a tie for fourth on eight-under-par with compatriot Carolin Kauffmann (69) and leading South African Kiera Floyd (68).

Pretoria Country Club’s Danielle du Toit also had an excellent final day, shooting a 66 to share seventh place on seven-under with Romy Meekers (69) and Ariane Klotz (72), who was second going into the last round.

In the sort of heat that could lead to medical attention, Strydom & Jamieson keep their cool 0

Posted on December 10, 2022 by Ken

On the sort of day when those unaccustomed to Lowveld heat could have ended up needing medical attention, South Africa’s Ockie Strydom stormed up the leaderboard in the third round of the Alfred Dunhill Championship, his 63 giving him a share of the lead as Scotsman Scott Jamieson stubbornly refused to let first place go.

Strydom ended the second round tied for 21st place on six-under, seven strokes behind Jamieson, but he produced an amazing round, eight birdies and an eagle taking him to 10-under through 15 holes.

He bogeyed the par-three 16th though, three-putting from the far reaches of the green, and then parred his way home to equal the course record set the previous day by Jamieson.

With 15-under now the target, Jamieson got to that mark with three successive birdies from the 11th hole and then ensured he made no mistakes and did not drop any shots coming in.

“I played the same golf as the first two days,” Strydom said as he improved greatly on scores of 68 and 70. “I made a few putts though, I holed a chip, hit my wedges closer and did not take any risks.

“The eagle on two, when I chipped in, was my shot of the day because I was in an impossible spot, short and right of the green, with a steep bunker to clear.

“There were quite tough flags and subtle breaks in the greens, which I saw were running at 13.7 at the start of my round. If they make them any quicker they’re going to kill us, but I managed to hit the ball in the right places.

“I made the right decisions out there and you can’t attack this course, you have to let it come to you, otherwise you’ll be done,” Strydom said.

Jamieson was happy with his performance, as firmer greens made for a tougher day for the 39-year-old. And that’s not mentioning the 35° heat.

“It was a solid day, I’ll take two-under especially after my front nine. As expected it was tougher today, the green speeds were right up. I hit poor shots on four and five that killed my momentum, but to be one-over at the turn was not a disaster,” Jamieson said.

“I knew there would be chances on the back nine and I was able to take three of them in a row. I was really disciplined, there were only two shots I was really not happy about, on four and five. I stuck to my game-plan and eventually got reward. I was proud of myself,” Jamieson said.

Both Strydom and Jamieson believe they have the equipment, both mentally and in terms of ball-striking, to get the job done in Sunday’s final round and claim the biggest victories of their career.

“I will do the same I’ve been doing every day, just play the golf and if it works out then it does, if it doesn’t, it doesn’t,” the phlegmatic Strydom said.

“We are all the same out there, we are all people, no different to each other. They are just names and we will have to see how good they do it in the final round.

“I’ve been there contending quite a few times and I will just keep doing what I’m doing,” Strydom, who has one Sunshine Tour win and 19 runners-up finishes, said.

“The tournament begins on the back nine tomorrow,” Jamieson said. “So far we’ve all just been jockeying for position, but tomorrow the game-plan could change.

“Tomorrow will be all about who plays the best golf and there are some good names up there on the leaderboard. So it’s going to take a good round to win, if I can get to 20-under I will be happy and hopefully that will be good enough. But you can’t control what others do,” Jamieson added.

One of those prime ‘others’ is Dean Burmester (68), who is tied for third alongside fellow South African Oliver Bekker (68) and in-form Englishman Dale Whitnell (66) on 13-under, two behind.

“I’m happy where I’m at. Leading is harder than chasing and Scott Jamieson won once years ago [2013] and Ockie has won once too. We will just have to wait and see what they do in the final round,” Burmester, who won his second DP World Tour title last year in Tenerife and has eight other Sunshine Tour wins, said.

Having grown up in the humid, subtropical climate of Mutare in eastern Zimbabwe, and with the confidence he has gained playing in America, Burmester is unlikely to wilt in the heat.

Bavuma gets chance to prove SA20 snub was wrong next week 0

Posted on November 04, 2022 by Ken

In a week’s time, Temba Bavuma will lead the Proteas into battle in the first T20 of a three-match series against India at Thiruvananthapuram, giving him an early opportunity to strike back at all the doubters and prove that his omission from the SA20 squads was a mistake.

National white-ball captain Bavuma failed to muster a bid in three attempts at the auction in Cape Town, despite, or perhaps because of, going in with a reserve price of R850 000.

The shock snub led to practically all the franchise coaches being quizzed about just how the player who will lead South Africa into the T20 World Cup next month had managed to lose out on a spot in the six franchises to play in the SA20 next January.

They seemed as nonplussed as the media.

“Just because you’re a good player in South Africa, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re going to be recognised around the world,” was the telling comment from Durban Super Giants coach Lance Klusener when he was asked about the omission of Bavuma and Proteas all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo.

“I’m sure Temba and Andile feel the same as the other players who weren’t sold. But it was brutal out there and there was a lot of competition.”

MI Cape Town coach, Simon Katich, the former Australian batsman, also put Bavuma’s absence down to competition for places.

“It’s a tough one, but there are plenty of good players who missed out because there was a lot of competition. And there was a lot of overseas competition for certain spots,” Katich said.

While Bavuma has proven his star quality in Test and ODI cricket, his strike-rate of 120.60 in T20 Internationals and 124.67 domestically is considered weak for the format.

But the often bizarre nature of T20 auctions was shown in how the franchises were willing to pay a dear price for Donovan Ferreira, the Northerns batsman who is an almost complete unknown overseas, but managed to fetch R5.5 million from Joburg Super Kings in the first express set of bids towards the end of the auction.

Super Kings coach Stephen Fleming seems a fan though.

“Donovan is relatively young, explosive and dynamic and he can keep wicket as well. I thought it would be a nice, easy buy, but the bidding got my heart beating.

“He was the last key position we needed, our last throw of the dice and we only just got him. Hopefully that effort will pay off for us.

“You usually can get some very good buys at the end and in the end it was a good day for us. The challenge is you set up your budget, but then you get blown out of the water on one of your prizes,” Fleming said.

Cronje yet to win the Currie Cup, and he burns a bit 0

Posted on June 20, 2022 by Ken

Lionel Cronje is an extremely well-travelled rugby player, but he is yet to win the Currie Cup and probably still burns a bit from his experience in last year’s final, giving the flyhalf a good reason to return to the Sharks and try and put that right.

The Sharks announced on Monday that the 32-year-old Cronje has returned to Kings Park on a two-year contract. Apart from playing for the KwaZulu-Natalians in 2014/15 and on loan last year, he has also  been on the books of five other South African provinces as well as playing in Australia for the Brumbies and, most recently, for Toyota Verblitz in Japan.

While on loan in Durban last year, he spoke candidly about his burning desire to win the Currie Cup, but the Sharks were hammered 44-10 in the final by the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld. The chance to play in Europe, in the United Rugby Championship, also figures high up on Cronje’s wish-list.

The Sharks have had a bit of an issue at flyhalf this season, with Curwin Bosch suffering a poor run of form and Boeta Chamberlain and Tito Bonilla not excelling enough to suggest they can help the Sharks to European glory. Cronje’s experience will now be thrown into the mix.

You would think that, with all the money they now have in their coffers from the MVM consortium, the Sharks could attract a world-class, high-profile flyhalf to Kings Park, but for the moment they are backing Bosch, but Cronje will be putting pressure on his position when he becomes available for selection in September.

The Sharks have also announced that locks Emile van Heerden and Renier Hugo have signed contracts that will keep them at Kings Park for the next three years, while exciting scrumhalf Grant Williams has extended his contract by another two years.

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    Philemon 1:7 – “Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.”

    “Every disciple of Jesus has a capacity for love. The most effective way to serve the Master is to share his love with others. Love can comfort, save the lost, and offer hope to those who need it. It can break down barriers, build bridges, establish relationships and heal wounds.” – A Shelter From The Storm, Solly Ozrovech

    If there’s a frustrating vacuum in your spiritual life and you fervently desire to serve the Lord but don’t know how you’re meant to do that, then start by loving others in his name.


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