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Uys and Hughes take the spoils at Sanlam Cancer Challenge Finals

11 Oct 2017

2017 Sanlam Cancer Challenge National Finals winners De Villiers Uys and Joyce Hughes; credit Luke Walker / SPORTZPICS
West Coast golfer De Villiers Uys of Xamarin Country Club in Lambert’s Bay successfully defended his Sanlam Cancer Challenge title at the Gary Player Country Club and Joyce Hughes captured the Overall Women's title this week during the 25th playing of the Sanlam Cancer Challenge National Final. 
Uys was four points back but managed to overhaul former Sunshine Tour pro and first-round leader Schalk van der Merwe, from Namibia’s Gobabis Golf Club, with an excellent round that included four birdies and just four bogeys. Uys finished six points ahead of Van der Merwe and Saga Reddy of Umkomaas Golf Club.
“Today was the best round I’ve played, definitely on a championship course like this. Schalk is a seriously good player, he has some skill, he really made me think out there and I’m privileged to be able to finish on top again, in my third visit to the Sanlam Cancer Challenge.
“This is such an important event because people with cancer need our support and if anyone needs help, you have no choice, you have to support them, it’s part of being human,” said Uys, who became emotional when asked about how cancer has touched his own life.
Joyce Hughes of Dainfern Country Club succeeded in making her second visit to the National Finals a winning one, as she claimed the women’s crown at Sun City.
Young Nicola Schoeman, who led by four points after the first round played at the Lost City Golf Course, double-bogeyed the notorious ninth hole, her last, at the Gary Player Country Club, allowing Hughes to snatch the win as she registered a brilliant par.
“Nicola was five ahead of me so I assumed I had no chance and just went out to enjoy the course, which was in beautiful condition. But it was nerve-wracking playing our last hole because I had a very long shot on to the green with water all around, so I was thrilled when it landed safely and I was able to make par,” a beaming Hughes said after finishing with 75 points, one ahead of Schoeman.
Hughes had her own reasons to feel emotional over her thrilling win.
“I first entered the Sanlam Cancer Challenge to support their cause because I believe they do an amazing job. They do so much for those who are suffering from cancer. My mom, my sister and my uncle all passed away due to cancer and my brother Douglas is currently undergoing cancer treatment. So this win is extra special and I dedicate it to Douglas, who is fighting this disease right now,” Hughes said.
Francois Venter of Woodhill Country Club in Pretoria described it as “my lucky day” as he won the B Section for his first win on his eighth attempt at the Sanlam Cancer Challenge National Finals, while Veronica Tredoux, a 69-year-old Benoni Lake Golf Club member who teaches Afrikaans in Tembisa, said she was ready to retire now after winning the women’s B Section on her first visit to the finals after entering her club competition for every one of the Sanlam Cancer Challenge’s 25 years.
While there are around 100 lucky participants in the National Finals, about 40 000 golfers are involved in the club competitions all over South Africa and Namibia and the Sanlam Cancer Challenge has already raised 121 percent more than their R3.5 million target for 2017, currently sitting on R4.25 million, with the money going towards the fight against cancer, both in terms of supporting sufferers and research.
And that’s obviously what is most important for the golfers.
“I lost two sisters through cancer and the work done by the Sanlam Cancer Challenge is just fantastic. All the money raised is wonderful and we are all privileged to take part. I absolutely loved the time at Sun City, it was fantastic and all done so nicely,” was the parting comment of a satisfied Venter.

Men’s Overall
79pts De Villiers Uys (Xamarin CC)
73pts Schalk van der Merwe (Gobabis GC), Saga Reddy (Umkomaas GC)
72pts Hendre Roode (Sandonia GC)
69pts Thomas Liebenberg (Silver Lakes CC), Francois Venter (Woodhill CC).

Men’s A Section
79pts De Villiers Uys (Xamarin CC)
73pts Schalk van der Merwe (Gobabis GC): Saga Reddy (Umkomaas GC)
72pts Hendre Roode (Sandonia GC)
67pts Roald Lassen (Parow GC).

Men’s B Section
69pts Francois Venter (Woodhill CC)
65pts Obie Oberholzer (Heilbron GC)
62pts Danie du Toit (Caledon GC)
61pts Francois Roos (Meyerton GC), Andrew Manthe (Olivewood GC).

Men’s C Section
69pts Thomas Liebenberg (Silver Lakes CC)
68pts Vinothan Govender (Chatsworth GC)
60pts Terence Harker (Worcester GC), Leon Bevan (Leopard Park GC)
58pts Duncan Cullen (Bankenveld GE).

Women’s Overall
75pts Joyce Hughes (Dainfern CC)
74pts Nicola Schoeman (Middelburg CC)
67pts Martine Strasheim (Paarl GC)
66pts Marika Neethling (Walvis Bay GC)
65pts Maritha de Beer (Pretoria CC), Veronica Tredoux (Benoni Lake GC).

Women’s A Section
75pts Joyce Hughes (Dainfern CC)
74pts Nicola Schoeman (Middelburg CC)
67pts Martine Strasheim (Paarl GC)
65pts Maritha de Beer (Pretoria CC)
62pts Debbie Lacey (West Bank GC).

Women’s B Section
65pts Veronica Tredoux (Benoni Lake GC)
64pts Mikah Poonawassy (Kimberley GC)
58pts Lize-Mari Prinsloo (Mossel Bay GC), Amanda Rossouw (Drakensig GC)
57pts Tanya Louw (East London GC), Suzette Vermeulen (Omeya GC), Kim Uytenbogaardt (Parow GC).

Women’s C Section
66pts Marika Neethling (Walvis Bay GC)
60pts Gillian Hammond (St Francis Links GC)
59pts Cinteche du Plessis (Akasia CC)
57pts Lindley Meyer (Nelspruit GC);
53pts Rentia Claassens (Bloemfontein GC).


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