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US sweeps to World Cup of Disabled Golf glory

19 May 2017

2017 Canon SA Disabled Golf Open champion Chad Pfeifer and Kenny Bontz from USA won the 2017 World Cup of Disabled Golf at King David Mowbray Golf Club; credit Luke Walker / SADGA

American Chad Pfeifer will have to buy an extra suitcase to take his trophy haul home to Boise, Idaho after he and partner Kenny Bontz marched to a colossal 42 stroke victory in the World Cup of Disabled Golf at King David Mowbray Golf Club on Friday.

The US pair opened up a yawning gap on Bob MacDermott and former SA Disabled Golf Open champion Josh Williams from Canada with rounds of 144, 145 and 149 during the three stroke play rounds of the Canon SA Disabled Golf Open.

In the final round, Pfeifer and Bontz fired a three-under-par 69 in the Fourballs and posted 74 in the Foursomes to triumph on a winning total of 581.

Bontz – who lost his left leg to cancer above the knee –plays off scratch like Pfeifer and regularly competes in state opens back home for able-bodied golfers.

“I love it,” he chuckles. “There are always a few guys who look at me in my golf cart with my prosthetic leg and roll their eyes. You know they’re thinking ‘what is this guy doing here?’ and I’m like, what do want to play for dude? Because I’m going to kick your butt. And I always take their cash.”

Bontz cuts a flamboyant figure with his signature Mohawk and flowery tattoos, but at 47, the man is a fighter second-to none and a genuinely talented golfer. So is Pfeifer, who lost his left leg on military service in Iraq when the vehicle he was driving set off a land mine.

They’re tougher now that they’ve seen adversity and overcome it, and boy, can they turn it on.

Pfeifer won the SA Open with a fabulous 54-hole return of four-under-par return of 212 at a course where many a normal pro has battled to break par.

His accuracy of the tee, the pin-point approaches and a magnificent putting stroke handed the team a huge advantage and the combination of Pfeifer and Bontz, who finished third in the SA Open, proved too lethal to match in the final round.

“We both hit good tee-balls to set up the birdie chances,” said Bontz.  “Chad and I have played a lot of golf together and against each other, so we know each other’s games well. We feed off each other and Chad’s putting been phenomenal all week.

“He only took up golf six years ago after his accident and he's got so good so quickly. He is a two-time Canon SA Disabled Golf Open winner, a three-time US National Amputee champion and the reigning World Disabled Golf champion, but his greatest worth is that he is an inspiration to so many people and he has touched the lives of a ton of people as he's played around the world.”

Pfeifer responded: “Kenny talks a lot; I mean a lot. What he’s not telling you is that his shoulders got very sore carrying me in the Fourballs and Foursomes. He is a great partner to have any day because he never stops fighting and he won’t let you give up, either.

“For all the tattoos and big talk, he is a guy you always want on your team. The Canon SA Disabled Golf Open is the best organised and run national championship in the world and the World Cup of Golf was absolutely fantastic. If we are privileged enough to be invited back next year, we will be back in South Africa with bells on.”

Williams and MacDermott combined for 149 in the final round to finish in second on 623, while the International Team of Juan Postigo from Spain and Welshman Martin Williams finished in third on 639.

Irish double leg amputee James Hourigan and his partner Cian Arthurs shot 68 in the Foursomes and 78 in the Fourballs to take fourth on 641 ahead of South African pair Herman van Wyk and Rupert Fortmann, who combined for 647.

South Africa’s second team – Byron Calvert and seven-time SA Open champion Ben van Zyl – finished ninth overall on 667.

World Cup of Disabled Golf Result

581 UNITED STATES
Chad Pfeifer / Kenny Bontz 144 145 149 143

623 CANADA 1
Josh Williams / Bob MacDermott 154 161 160 149

639 INTERNATIONAL 1
Juan Postigo ESP / Martin Williams WAL 158 162 165 154

641 IRELAND
James Hourigan / Cian Arthurs 164 167 164 146

647 SOUTH AFRICA 1
Rupert Fortmann / Herman van Wyk 168 159 168 152

652 CANADA 2
Johannes Grames / Matt Hallat 169 196 159 155

655 ENGLAND
Mick Horsley / Shaun Bakker 160 170 167 158

664 INTERNATIONAL 2
Reinard Friske GER / Chris Wood RSA 164 164 171 165

667 SOUTH AFRICA 2
Ben van Zyl / Byron Calvert 172 165 172 158

675 SWEDEN
David Schutsander / Lars Lindenberg 178 162 170 165

704 DENMARK
Keld Schmager / Flemming Rasmussen 184 186 169 165

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

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