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Showdowns looming at SA IPT

21 Sep 2016

Gauteng North ahead of day three at SA IPT; credit GNGU

On another day of upsets and jostling for position, Ekurhuleni and Central Gauteng pulled one out of the bag, while Gauteng North drew a bold line under their intention to win this year’s South African Inter-Provincial on Wednesday.

Gauteng North whipped Boland 7.5 – 4.5 to move to the top of the log with a hat-trick of wins, Ekurhuleni edged out Southern Cape a tightly-fought contest to win 6.5 – 5.5 and the defending champions claimed a hard-earned 7 – 5 victory over Western Province at the Fish River Sun Resort.

Gauteng North led Boland 2.5 – 1.5 after the foursomes and quickly extended their advantage to four points with victories from Richard Joubert, Marco Loubser and Philip Kruse in the singles.

Karl Osche and Garrick Higgo hit back for Boland to narrow the gap, but Gauteng North skipper Andrew van der Knaap defeated Pierre de Villiers 2-up to keep the Daisies in front.

Estiaan Conradie pushed their tally to 7.5 when he downed Christiaan Basson 1-up, but Herman Loubser had the last word for Boland when he squared the final game against Albert Venter with a pair of birdies at 16 and 17 and won the last hole to triumph 1-up.

“It definitely wasn’t an easy contest against Boland and the boys had to fight hard to secure this third win for us,” said manager Johan Struwig. “Once again, they showed a lot of grit down the stretch to pull it through and we will need more of that fire on Thursday. Province is always a tough act to beat and the forecast calls for very strong wind, so we are in for another tough day at the office.”

Ekurhuleni motored to a 3 – 1 lead with two wins and a pair of halves in the foursomes and Angus-Ellis Cole and 15-year-old Jayden Schaper put the side even further in front when they won their singles 6 & 5.

Seasoned campaigner Ivan Williams and first-timer Caylum Boon hit back to stem the bleeding for Southern Cape. Rookie Brandon Cloete won 2 & 1 to shorten the gap for the Garden Route side and Henk Geldenhuys beat Jaco Rall 1-up to level the match at 5-all.

The match was still poised on a knife’s edge after Kyle McClatchie and Southern Cape’s Nicholas Mitchell halved the last game, but Dylan Mostert sealed the deal for Ekurhuleni when he defeated Jade Buitendag 1-up with a birdie-birdie finish.

Meanwhile Central Gauteng also started the singles with a 2.5 – 1.5 lead, but Paul Colditz and Luca Filippi quickly turned the match in Province’s favour.

“Paul and Luca put Province on the attack, and the remaining six games were tight,” said Central Gauteng manager Jaco du Plessis. “The lead changed at almost every turn.

“David Muller was two down through nine, but he turned it around to win 2-up and that gave the team a spurt of confidence. Jason (Rossiter) was 2-down through 13 and Shaun only squared his game at 13, so it was great to see both those guys tie their games for a crucial point.”

David McIntyre stood his ground against Altin van der Merwe.

The rookie fought back to square the game, won the 16th with a birdie and protected his lead to win the game 1-up. Seasoned veteran Ryan Dreyer delivered under the gun against Michael Sherriff. The country’s top ranked mid-amateur was all square coming down the last, but he boxed a 30-foot right-to-left curler to win the game 1-up.

“Then Darin (de Smidt) birdied the last hole to halve with Luke Trocado to get us the extra half point to take us to seven,” Du Plessis said. “At a stage it looked like we were out of it, but the guys showed incredibly spirit to fight back and I want them to bring that same fighting attitude to the match against Southern Cape on Thursday.”

Ekurhuleni will go up against Boland, while log leaders Gauteng North take on Western Province.

Ekurhuleni 6.5 vs Southern Cape 5.5
Gauteng North 7.5 vs Boland 4.5
Central Gauteng 7 vs Western Province 5

(Pos-Union-Played-Won-Drawn-Lost-Points-Matches won)
1 Gauteng North (3, 3, 0, 0, 6, 22)
2 Southern Cape (3, 2, 0, 1, 4, 21)
3 Ekurhuleni (3, 2, 0, 1, 4, 18)
4 Central Gauteng (3, 1, 1, 1, 3, 17.5)
5 Boland (3, 0, 1, 2, 1, 13.5)
6 Western Province (3, 0, 0, 3, 0, 16)

Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of the South African Golf Association.

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