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Team SA well positioned at Summer Universiade

25 Aug 2017

USSA team at the 29th Summer Universiade in Taiwan; credit Johan Steyn.

The South African Universities Team are in a good position heading into the weekend at the 29th Summer Universiade in Taipei, Taiwan.

Clayton Mansfield, Dylan Naidoo and Kyle de Beer were 13th overall in the 21-team competition after combining for two-over-par 146 in Thursday’s first round, but the local heroes rocketed to joint sixth with a strong performance on day two.

GolfRSA National Squad player Naidoo returned a non-counting 77 on day one, but the Arkansas State University senior hit his stride in challenging conditions in the second round at the Sunrise Golf and Country Club on Friday.

Naidoo wiped out a bogey start with birdies at three, six and nine and cancelled another dropped shot at the par four 11th with a hat-trick of birdies at 12, 13 and 14 to go four under. He stumbled at 15, but made solid pars over the tough closing holes to anchor the side with a three-under-par 69.

De Beer from Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University, who contributed a 75 in the opening round, fashioned a one over 73 to take the team total to two under 142. The Eastern Province golfer was two under after a brace of birdies at nine and 10, but ruined his great run with a triple bogey finish.

Mansfield from Varsity College set the first round pace with a one-under-par 71 and returned a non-counting 79 in round two.

The South African Universities Team shares sixth on 288 with Korea.

“This course was designed by Robert Trent Jones Jnr and won the Best of Pacific Asia award a couple of times,” said the SA team coach, Emile Steinmann from TuksGolf Club & Academies.

“It’s a tight layout with trouble everywhere. The heat and humidity has also been tough to adjust to, with the mercury at 29 degrees Celsius already when we head to the course in the morning.

“We struggled to gain momentum in the first round, but our guys were determined to do better. I told them that being 13th was probably a good omen and that with a few good scores, you can jump the ladder quickly.

“They put up a tremendous fight in tough conditions today to lift themselves into the top six and our team score was the fourth best on the day. The team went to watch athletics this afternoon and they were really fired up after Justine Palframan won silver in the 400 metres.

“Japan is well ahead on 265 after rounds of 132 and 133, so we still have some work to do, but I believe these guys have the gas to close the gap on the front runners.”

Team manager HPC TuksGolf Club & Academies Head of Program Johan Steyn was impressed with the team’s ability to claw themselves into position.

“The guys were disappointed after the first round, but if there were medals for the guys who played their hearts out, Clayton, Kyle and Dylan would be among the frontrunners,” said Steyn. “We knew they had it in them to get into the top five, because none of them are scared to go low and I am extremely proud of their tenacity and determination to pull it off.”

To visit the official website, click HERE 

Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of GolfRSA, a SAGA and WGSA Not-For-Profit company.

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