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Du Toit, Du Preez give Gauteng North the lead

Du Toit

Danielle du Toit and Larissa du Preez combined for an opening six-under-par 138 to put Gauteng North in the driver’s seat on day one of the SA Women’s 72-Hole Teams Championship at Waterkloof Golf Club on Monday.

Gauteng North have dominated the annual event for four successive years from 2010, but their bid for a record fifth title in the Swiss Trophy competition was thwarted by KwaZulu-Natal at Mossel Bay Golf Club in 2014.

Hoping to cash in on their home course advantage, Du Toit and Du Preez from the Gauteng North A team made the most of the perfect scoring conditions to open up a five-shot lead over Ekurhuleni.

Akasia Country Club’s Du Preez – a first-year sport management student – offset a bogey on each nine with a trio of birdies for a 71. ‘Your approach shots here at Waterkloof are critical and the key to scoring well is putting,’ said the Ernie Els and Fancourt Foundation player.

‘The greens run very true, but they are extremely quick. If you hit it on the wrong side of the hole, you’re looking at bogey or worse. Accurate approach shots and a hot putter is key to a good score.’

Du Toit definitely had the measure of the greens, needing just 23 putts for a flawless 67. ‘It was all down to the flat stick,’ said Du Toit, who hopes to help her team return to winning ways before she heads off to the United States to take up a golf scholarship at Purdue University, the alma mater of South African LPGA Tour player Paula Reto.

‘This course is not extremely tough, but the greens are so slick and you can get severely punished if you don’t hit it in the right spots. I drove the ball well and was never in any trouble, but I made all the birdies on offer and that was key to my round.’

South Africa’s third-ranked Caitlyn Macnab anchored the Ekurhuleni A team with a two-under 70 and reigning Sanlam SA Women’s Stroke Play champion Casandra Hall backed her up with a 71.

The first upset of this year’s championship came from Gauteng.

Kaiyuree Moodley and Samantha Whateley from Gauteng B carded rounds of 75 to finish on 150, pipping Gauteng North A’s Zethu Myeki (75) and Woo-Ju Son (76) for third.

Defending champions KwaZulu-Natal rounded out the top five after Brittney-Fay Berger posted a 74 and University of Memphis student Michaela Fletcher returned a 79 to finish on 153.

Annalie Swanepoel and Megan Streicher opened with respective rounds of 78 and 80 to push Boland top the table in the Challenge Trophy on a total of 14-over 158.

Ekurhuleni B are two shots adrift, courtesy of a 75 for Kiera Floyd and 85 from Teagan Lubbe.

Nicola Schoeman (80) and Patrizia Lombard (82) combined for 162 to seal third for Mpumalanga, while North West is just one stroke back after Elru Botha and Crystal Cooper registered respective rounds of 81 and 82.

Gabbi Venter (81) and Chante van Zyl (82) from Free State finished in fifth place on 163.

A first round 67 moved Du Toit straight to the top of the individual leaderboard. Macnab is second and Du Preez finished in third. Hall’s 73 moved her to fourth while fellow
Ekurhuleni amateur Sarah Bouch shares fifth on two over with Berger.

Photo: Du Toit in action, by Ernest Blignault
 
FIRST ROUND SCORES
 
Swiss Team Trophy
138 Gauteng North A Danielle du Toit 67 Larissa du Preez 71
143 Ekurhuleni A Caitlyn Macnab 70 Casandra Hall 73
150 Gauteng B Kaiyuree Moodley 75 Samantha Whateley 75
151 Gauteng A Zethu Myeki 75 Woo-Ju Son 76
153 Kwazulu Natal A Brittney-Fay Berger 74 Michaela Fletcher 79
155 Western Province A Kaylah Williams 76 Kelly Erasmus 79
155 Southern Cape Sandra Winter 77 Zane Naude 78
157 Gauteng C Eleonora Galletti 77 Lynette Fourie 80
159 Western Province B Katia Shaff 79 Zayb Fredericks 80
160 Gauteng North B Catherine Lau 78 Holly Lau 82
166 Boland A Bianca Wernich 81 Nina Grey 85

Challenge Trophy
158 Boland B Annalie Swanepoel 78 Megan Streicher 80
160 Ekurhuleni B Kiera Floyd 75 Teagan Lubbe 85
162 Mpumalanga Nicola Schoeman 80 Patrizia Lombard 82
163 North West Elru Botha 81 Crystal Cooper 82
163 Free State Gabrielle Venter 81 Chante van Zyl 82
164 Gauteng North C Cleo Jordaan 82 Karin Watts 82
165 Border Demi Flanagan 77 Luzan Esterhuizen 88
170 Western Province C Zilke Bal 82 Iman Adams 88
172 Kwazulu Natal B Kim Strauss 86 Marlie Smit 86
175 Northern Cape Magdel Du Toit 85 Mikah Poonawassy 90
177 Limpopo Desiree Earle 87 Anzel van der Schyff 90
177 Eastern Province Jessica Gornall 88 Cheri-Lee Knoetze 89

Individual Competition (top 20)
67 Danielle du Toit
70 Caitlyn Macnab
71 Larissa du Preez
73 Casandra Hall
74 Sarah Bouch; Brittney-Fay Berger
75 Kiera Floyd; Zethu Myeki; Kaiyuree Moodley; Samantha Whateley
76 Symone Henriques; Woo-Ju Son; Kajal Mistry; Kaylah Williams
77 Eleonora Galletti; Demi Flanagan; Sandra Winter
78 Zane Naude; Annalie Swanepoel; Catherine Lau


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