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Ken Borland

Floyd surely not far from breakthrough victory given recent form 0

Posted on July 01, 2024 by Ken

Talented 19-year-old golfer Kiera Floyd is surely not far from her breakthrough Sunshine Ladies Tour victory given her recent form, and this week’s Absa Ladies Invitational being played at her home course of Serengeti Estates may just give her that extra edge that leads her to her first professional title.

Floyd has finished in the top-10 of her last two events, the Fidelity ADT Ladies Challenge and the Standard Bank Ladies Open, while she also contended strongly in the Dimension Data Ladies Pro-Am at Fancourt, before shooting 84 in the final round to finish tied-15th.

And the good news for her is that the Serengeti layout is just her cup of tea. Floyd’s length and accuracy off the tee should see her prosper on the 5688m course.

“I’ve been playing Serengeti for many years and I’m really looking forward to this tournament. Serengeti has a lot of signature holes, which can make it a make-or-break situation. Just none of the holes are the same, there’s always something different thrown at you and usually a bunker in the way too,” Floyd says.

“It’s not a very open course, but it all depends on where you play it off the tee. It’s definitely not the same as the other courses we’ve played this season, for me it is special, I really like the layout and it has its own way of playing it.

“I’m feeling really confident, I’m playing really nicely at the moment. The course is a bit longer, which suits me because I am a long hitter. But I still have to play well, I can’t take things for granted just because it is my home course,” Floyd says.

The second-year pro has always quickly conquered the different levels of the game, and her maiden Sunshine Ladies Tour win cannot be far away judging by her previous achievements. Floyd won the Benoni Country Club Ladies Championship aged nine, she finished third in the Sunshine Ladies Tour’s Jabra Classic aged 14, and she won the South African Women’s Strokeplay Championship in 2022 before turning professional at the beginning of last year. She has already racked up six top-10 finishes on tour.

But on a course with so many different layers of difficulty, she has identified staying calm during the inevitable tough times as the key element of her game that needs to improve for her to make that next step into the winner’s circle as a professional.

“I’ve struggled a bit in the past events with keeping my head up if I make a bogey or a hole does not go well. I need to be more consistent, put both nines together. You need that consistency so if you start on a roll then you can keep it going. I need to stay patient to get the ‘W’, just work my way through the course and whatever happens, happens,” Floyd said.

Her contemporary Gabrielle Venter won the Standard Bank Ladies Open at Royal Cape Golf Club three weeks ago, giving Floyd a lot of confidence she can make it back-to-back South African winners when the Absa Ladies Invitational gets underway at Serengeti on Thursday.

But there will be other winners providing a stiff challenge in the R1.2 million event as well, such as seasoned champion Lee-Anne Pace, Germany’s Helen Kreuzer and India’s Tvesa Malik, already winners on tour this season, as well as strong South African challengers such as Stacy Bregman, Nicole Garcia and Cara Gorlei, and the consistent Alexandra Swayne from the U.S. Virgin Islands, who has not finished outside the top-14 yet this campaign.

Mashimbyi not far from having kittens as Northerns waited anxiously for EP result 0

Posted on April 11, 2022 by Ken

Despite the Northerns Titans having eventually seen off a determined second innings by the Central Gauteng Lions half-an-hour before tea on the final day, coach Mandla Mashimbyi was not far from having kittens in the changeroom for the next two-and-a-half hours as they waited anxiously for the result of the Eastern Province Warriors match against the Free State Knights in Bloemfontein on Monday.

The Titans eventually bowled the Lions out for 273 in their second innings, Mitchell van Buuren leading the resistance with a tremendously defiant 107, remarkably, his second century of the match. He was ably supported by Reeza Hendricks, who denied Northerns for more than four hours in scoring 89.

But off-spinner Simon Harmer kept chipping away for the Titans and his 6/84 in 33.2 overs took his season tally to 44 wickets at an average of just 19.29.

Northerns were left with just 62 to win and they did that in 13.1 overs with seven wickets in hand.

But Free State were busy collapsing in Bloemfontein, slumping to 82/8, a lead of just 143, against the EP Warriors, who had declared on their overnight score of 166/3, still 61 runs behind. With the Titans winning at Centurion, Eastern Province had to win their game to claim the title.

It was a tactic that very nearly paid off as they bowled superbly in swing-friendly conditions, Mthiwekhaya Nabe leading the way with 4/26 in 12 overs, while Akhona Mnyaka removed Paballo Mogoera (4) and Raynard van Tonder (0) with successive deliveries.

Patrick Botha is being released by the Knights, but the Northerns Titans may be inclined to look kindly on him as his 38 on Monday, following up his first-innings century, was crucial in keeping the Warriors in the field until the rain came shortly before the tea break.

The weather never improved and the umpires finally called off play in Bloemfontein at 5pm, much to the delight of the Titans team at Centurion.

A new-look Titans side triumphed thanks to an impressive all-round effort in the competition. The whole batting unit all averaged over 40 through the season – nine of them in total – while Harmer was well-supported by seamers Lizaad Williams (10 wickets @ 12.60), Aya Gqamane (14 @ 28.57), Corbin Bosch (18 @ 33.22) and Junior Dala (11 @ 35.81).

It would seem all is on track with the rebuild at SuperSport Park, the Titans having also finished runners-up in the CSA T20 Challenge last week.

Scores in brief of other games

KZN Dolphins 422 v Boland 422/8 declared (Pieter Malan 219*, Stiaan van Zyl 48, Shaun von Berg 40; Eathan Bosch 3/56, Prenelan Subrayen 3/124). Match drawn.

Western Province 576 v North-West 202 and 242 (Wesley Marshall 58, Senuran Muthusamy 101; George Linde 3-48). Western Province won by an innings and 132 runs.

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    Mark 7:8 – “You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men.”

    Our foundation must be absolute surrender, devotion and obedience to God, rising from pure love for him. Jesus Christ must be central in all things and his will must take precedence over the will of people, regardless of how well-meaning they may be.

    Surrender yourself unconditionally to the guidance of the Holy Spirit, then you will be able to identify what is of man with the wisdom of the Holy Spirit. Then you will be able to serve – in love! – according to God’s will.

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