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Du Plessis claims Kenya Junior Championship

07 Aug 2013

Kenya Junior Championship winner Hennie du Plessis from Polokwane with Crown Paints Kenya Ltd CEO Rakesh Rao (left) and Ashwin Gidoomal, chairman of the Kenya Junior Golf Foundation; credit KGU.

South Africa’s Hennie du Plessis put on a master class from tee to green for at Muthaiga Golf Club in Nairobi to claim a commanding victory in the Kenya Junior Championship on Thursday.

Although the 16-year-old Polokwane golfer dropped four shots in the last three holes of the final round, his fourth successive 70 was good enough to secure a 17-shot victory in the prestigious Kenya Junior Golf Foundation event.

Du Plessis finished on a winning total of four-under-par 284 with the country’s top ranked junior, Daniel Nduva, second on 297 after carding a closing 78.

Although Nduva had taken the first round lead with an opening 68, but Du Plessis joined the defending champion in the lead at the 36-hole mark. The pair were nine shots clear of the field and it looked like a two-man race to the end, but the much expected feud failed to ensue when the defending champion practically gifted Du Plessis the title with a third round 79.

The victory comes on the back of a great run of form for South Africa’s number two ranked junior, who claimed runner-up finishes in two prestigious junior events and a tie for fourth at the Limpopo Open in July.

“I really enjoyed my experience here at Muthaiga,” Du Plessis said. “Everyone made us feel very welcome here and I have to thank Taufiq (Balala) and everyone at the Kenyan Junior Golf Foundation, as well as the greenkeeper and staff at Muthaiga for giving us a fantastic course and a great tournament.

“I would also like to thank Crown Paints Kenya for giving the country’s junior golfers and players the chance to compete in this event. It was an awesome experience for me and I am thrilled with the victory.”

The Limpopo golfer hopes to carry his form into the Kenya Golf Union’s Kabete Open this weekend. The 54-hole tournament that is part of the Kenya Golfer of the Year series and will be played at the Vet Club in Kabete.

“The Kabete Open also carries world ranking points, so I decided to play and see how I measure up against the older, more experienced amateurs. I’m not sure yet if I will stay to play the Kenya Junior Match Play next week, but it could be interesting to see if I can win the double.”

The Kenya Junior Match Play from 13-16 August recently received a three-year sponsorship endorsement from Kingsway Tyres Limited

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