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Golf | Amateur Golf

Casey Jarvis © SuperSport.com

Historic win for teen Jarvis on IGT Challenge Tour

State Mines amateur Casey Jarvis is becoming used to making history. The first South African to win the English Boys Under-14 Open Amateur Stroke Play in 2017. The youngest player to lift the Ekurhuleni Open trophy last October.

And now – at 15 years, seven months and 22 days – the youngest IGT Challenge Tour winner after a four-shot triumph in the Race to Q-School #4 at State Mines Country Club on Wednesday.

The GolfRSA National Squad member from Ekurhuleni bettered the previous mark set by European Tour campaigner Zander Lombard by almost two years.

“It’s pretty cool to be youngest champion, but that’s the cherry on top,” said Jarvis. “I’m really excited to start of African swing with some confidence and form and to taking my A-game to Leopard Creek for the African Amateur Stroke Play next week.”

Jarvis spent a couple of weeks on the bench just before the start of the season after he injured inter-costal muscles during practice. “I missed the first two Nomads National Order of Merit events, but I got to some competitive time on the Bridge Fund Managers Junior Series. I still wasn’t swinging it great in the Free State Open, but I got myself in contention in the Gauteng North Open and finished second at Silver Lakes.

“I felt fine swinging the club, but my short game was still rusty, so I decided to play the IGT Challenge Tour to put my wedges and putter under some pressure. I grew up playing this course, so I thought I would do well, but I never expected to win. That was a nice bonus.”

Jarvis fired an opening six-under for a three-way share of the lead with fellow State Mines amateur Francois Blaauw and Kempton Park rookie Ruhan van Dijk.

“I was off late in the second round, so after the physio in Bedfordview at 06h30, I went to school for a couple of hours,” he said. “I felt good out there and I was striking it well in the second round, but the putter was cold and I posted a 70.”

Heading into the final round, Blaauw led the field on 11-under and Jarvis was three off the pace, but he got off to a birdie start and closed the gap on the overnight leader with further birdies at three, four, seven and nine.

He was a shot adrift after 10, but Blaauw dropped out of contention with a trio of bogeys.

Meanwhile Swiss professional Neal Woernhard, Big Easy Road to Sunshine Tour winner Dylan Kok and former IGT Challenge Tour winner Tristen Strydom all made a charge on the back nine. The Swiss golfer fired five birdies for a 65 to set the clubhouse target at 11-under. Kok carded 68 to join Woenhard on 205 andStrydom got to 11-under.

Jarvis kept a cool head under the mounting pressure.

He shot to the top of the leaderboard with a birdie at the par four 12th and stretched his lead to four shots with a brace of birdies at 14 and 15.

“After 17 I heard that Neal shot 65 for the low round of the day,” said Jarvis. “Stupidly I tried to beat his score, but it didn’t come off. I hit my tee shot in the bunker on the left, and left my approach short of the green, so I had to up-and-down for birdie to get the low round of the day.

“I ended up three-putting for bogey to match Neal with a 65. I’m really glad now that I decided to play after all, especially after I was named to the GolfRSA Junior Team to play the All-Africa Junior Golf Challenge in March. I know the other guys on the team really well (Jayden Schaper, Christo Lamprecht and Sam Simpson) and we are going to go all out to win. My game feels really solid right now and I feel I can only keep on improving.”

Blaauw, who is also heading to Leopard Creek for the start of the African Swing, closed with an even-par 72 to tie Kok and Woenhard for second. Strydom, however, dropped shots at 14 and 16 and had to settle for fourth on his own on nine-under after posting a 68.


All competitors RSA unless otherwise specified; amateurs indicated as AMA

201 - Casey Jarvis AMA 66 70 65

205 - Neal Woernhard (SUI) 70 70 65, Dylan Kok 70 67 68, Francois Blaauw AMA 66 67 72

207 - Tristen Strydom 73 66 68

208 - Jason Diab 74 69 65, Maritz Wessels 71 68 69, Luke Brown 69 67 72, Christopher van der Merwe AMA 68 67 73

209 - Richard Joubert 70 69 70

210 - Werner Deyzel AMA 69 70 71, Vaughn van Deventer AMA 69 68 73

211 - Quintin Crause 71 70 70, Stephan Erasmus 71 70 70, Jaco van der Merwe AMA 68 72 71

212 - Henning du Plooy AMA 71 70 71, Gary Daoust (BEL) 70 71 71, Peetie van der Merwe 70 68 74, Ruhan van Dijk 66 70 76

213 - Duan Nagel AMA 68 73 72, James Mack (ENG) 73 70 70

214 - Thanda Mavundla 68 74 72, Darin de Smidt AMA 70 72 72, Gareth Sargent AMA 73 71 70, Michael-James Steyn 71 74 69, Ivan Mare AMA 76 69 69

215 - Divan Marais 71 73 71, Andrew Carlsson 69 70 76

216 - Hanish Nagrani (ZIM) 73 69 74, Jack Duthie 71 74 71, Jancarel Rossouw AMA 75 70 71, Khaya Jika 73 64 79

217 - Bryce Myburgh 72 71 74, Neal Herman 73 71 73, Nico du Buisson 72 74 71

218 - Hanlo Jacobs 73 69 76, Kyle Murphy AMA 71 73 74, Andrew Plint AMA 73 72 73, Elmo Barnard AMA 75 70 73, Clinton Grobler 76 70 72, Bradley Diggeden AMA 75 71 72

220 - Riaan Swart AMA 72 73 75, Michael Saunders (ENG) 72 74 74, Keanu Pestana AMA 72 74 74, WM Coetzee AMA 76 70 74

221 - Christof Appel 72 73 76, Brandon Lydon AMA 75 71 75

222 - Mitchell Lightfoot 74 72 76

223 - Lincon Cele 71 71 81, Tristan Topka AMA 75 71 77

224 - Albert Visser 74 72 78


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