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Central Gauteng crowned SA Mid-Amateur IPT champions

12 Oct 2012

The victorious Central Gauteng team after beating defending champions KwaZulu-Natal 10-2 in the final round to lift the South African Mid-Amateur Inter-Provincial title for the first time since 2008; credit SAGA

The Central Gauteng squad invoked the same courage and team spirit that carried the European Team to a come-from-behind victory at the Ryder Cup two weeks ago, when they lifted the  2012 South African Mid-Amateur Inter-Provincial title with a stupendous performance at Schoeman Park in Bloemfontein on Friday.

An epic final round battle was expected between the frontrunners, tied for the lead on six points each, but KwaZulu-Natal and the Western Province wilted in the face of the gritty determination and fighting spirit the Central Gauteng side showed in scoring a runaway victory in the country’s biggest mid-amateur team competition.

Western Province, needing a big winning margin to beat Central on games count, could do no better than a 7-5 result against their neighbours Boland and this left the way clear for KwaZulu-Natal, trailing by just one game, with a chance to retain the title.

But Central Gauteng began as they meant to finish. After dominating the foursomes, Central took a 3½ - ½ lead into the singles and, although they nailed the victory in their first four games, the team continued to drill the coastal side for an unprecedented 10-2 triumph.

Central Gauteng manager Marinus Weiss explained that when Central’s number five, David Muller, beat Murray Gilson 3&1 to guarantee the team’s victory in the fourth game, it only inspired his team mates to dig in their heels further.

“We had a good lead after the foursomes, but the guys never let up,” gushed an ecstatic Weiss.

“Neil Fusedale drew first blood for us with his ninth win this week when he beat Keith Forde 5&4. Then our number eight Grant Wood won his match at the 16th. That really fired up the rest of the squad and you could just see the determination from all the players; every man on the team wanted to bring home a win.”

The team won six of the eight singles games, with Stephen Johnson halving his match against Gerry Coetzee and Steve Williams, playing at number one, losing to Lyall McNeill at the 17th.

“Although they knew they had the title, the guys still kept fighting; they played for each other and supported each other,” said Weiss.

“It was a fantastic effort from every guy on the team. They batted well from one to eight. The match was played in a great spirit between the two teams, but I don’t think I’ve never seen team spirit like my guys showed today.”

In the final A-Section match, Ekurhuleni handed the Eastern Province a 9½ - 2½ drumming to finish third on the final log.

Western Province placed second, the KwaZulu-Natal fourth and Boland managed to avoid regulation with their fourth round victory over EP, who earned the wooden spoon and was relegated just a year after they battled to a hard-earned promotion at Humewood.

Meanwhile the North West Province, having scored eight points to deny Free State & Northern Cape by one, earned promotion and will replace the Eastern Province in the A-Section at the 2013 championship.

 

FINAL ROUND RESULTS

A-Section

Central Gauteng 10 vs KwaZulu Natal 2

Western Province 7 vs Boland 5

Ekurhuleni 9.5 vs Eastern Province 2.5

B-Section

Limpopo 6.5 vs Gauteng North 5.5

Southern Cape 6.5 vs Border 5.5

 

A-SECTION LOG

(Position-Union-Played-Won-Drew-Lost-Points-Games)

1 Central Gauteng (5, 4, 0, 1, 8,38.5)

2 Western Province (5, 4, 0, 1, 8,32.0)

3 Ekurhuleni (5, 3, 0, 2, 6,35.5)

4 KwaZulu-Natal (5, 3, 0, 2, 6,29.5)

5 Boland (5, 1, 0, 4, 2,30.5)

6 Eastern Province (5, 0, 0, 5, 0,14.0)

B-SECTION LOG

 

(Position-Union-Played-Won-Drew-Lost-Points-Games)

1 North West (5, 4, 0, 1, 8,39.0)

2 Free State & Northern Cape (5, 3, 1, 1, 7,36.0)

3 Border (5, 2, 1, 2, 5,27.5)

4 Gauteng North (5, 2, 0, 3, 4,31.0)

5 Limpopo (5, 2, 0, 3, 4,24.0)

6 Southern Cape (5, 1, 0, 4, 2,22.5)

7 Mpumalanga (0, 0, 0, 0, 0,0.0)

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