The country’s top amateurs are set to face some strong international opposition in this year’s South African Amateur Strokeplay Championship which tees off at Port Elizabeth Golf Club this morning.
Top-ranked Tristen Strydom and defending champion Jason Smith will spearhead the South African challenge against 31 players from Ireland, Scotland, France, England, Italy, Spain, and Switzerland.
The last international winner of the championship was England’s Gary Wolstenholme at George Golf Club in 2002.
Smith predicted the international players “are going to throw down the gauntlet this year”.
The 20-year-old Irene golfer held off 2014 British amateur champion Bradley Neil from Scotland, 2013 Northern Ireland strokeplay champion Dermot McElroy, and local favourite Stefan Cronje at Benoni Country Club to claim a one-stroke victory at Benoni Country Club last year.
The TuksSport Golf Academy player is quietly confident following a tie for fourth in the Eastern Province-Border stroke championship on Sunday.
“I think the foreign players are really encouraged by the fact that we haven’t had a foreign winner in 12 years and I believe this week is going to be a real humdinger,” Smith said.
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