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Faber’s fabulous ace a good omen?

15 Aug 2013

Plettenberg Bay Country Club golfer, James Faber; credit Pieter Els.

Local favourite James Faber is counting on a recent hole-in-one being a good omen ahead of this weekend’s Southern Cape Open at Plettenberg Bay Country Club.

The 40-year-old Faber, or FJ as he is fondly known, knows he has the home course advantage and he can rely on the support from his regular playing partners, friends and family, but he is hoping that the ace will bring him luck, and the winning edge on Sunday.

“The country’s top amateurs are all here this week, so I figure I have to take my luck where I can get it,” the Southern Cape golfer smirked.

“You know how your parents always told you that good things come to those who wait? Well, I’ve competed in the Southern Cape Open for years, but I’ve never come close to winning.

“And I waited 20 years for my first ace to come. And here it happened on my home course and just before the Southern Cape Open! How can that not be a good omen?”
On a blustery day last month, the mid-amateur timed an eight-iron from 123 meters to perfection into the wind at the par-three 11th. “We watched as the ball pitched just behind the pin, before it spun back in slow motion and dropped straight into the hole,” Faber said. “It was absolutely the most incredible moment of my 20-odd year golfing career.

“That’s why I have to believe this might be my week. That hole-in-one has to count for something.”

But the experienced provincial golfer will also make his intimate knowledge of the course count against the country’s top ranked golfers.

“We have number one, two and three here this week - Zander Lombard, Christiaan Bezuidenhout and Gerlou Roux,” Faber said. “They will be tough to beat, no doubt.

“Zander and Christiaan don’t play at the coast that often, so I might have an edge on them, because I have played this course in every possible weather condition imaginable. And I’m counting on that to be my secret weapon against Gerlou, because he is a great coastal player.”

The scratch golfer also expects tough competition in the 54-hole challenge from a strong local contingent.

In addition to Sanlam SA Amateur finalist Andrew Light and Nomads SA Boys U-17 champion Jovan Rebula, the recently crowned Southern Cape Match Play winner, Nicolas Mitchell, as well as stalwarts Anton Prinsloo and Staffie Barnard will also be in the line-up .

“I play with these guys all the time, so I know what they can do,” Faber shrugged. “I mean, I even have to worry about that youngster, Thriston Lawrence from Mpumalanga, who won a junior event at Fancourt in the worst weather.

“The bases are loaded and that’s why I am counting on my supporters, my home course knowledge and a little good luck rubbing off from that hole-in-one. You just have to trust that it’s your year.”

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