It's Buhai all the way at Joburg Ladies Open | TeamSA - TeamSA
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It’s Buhai all the way at Joburg Ladies Open

Buhai

Ashleigh Buhai completed a commanding wire-to-wire victory to collect her eighth Sunshine Ladies Tour trophy with a five-shot winning margin in the Joburg Ladies Open at Modderfontein Golf Club on Friday.

Buhai banked the the lion’s share of the R500 000 prize pot and a total of eight-under 208 earned her 650 points, which boosted her to the top spot of the Investec Property Fund Order of Merit.

‘It’s great to leave South Africa with a double whammy, because I set myself some pretty steep goals this week,’ said a smiling Buhai.

‘I’m really pleased with this win. I had chances the first two years at Royal Johannesburg and Kensington, but I never made the most of my home course. It feels really good to add my name to the trophy; after all I’m a Joburg girl, so it’s fitting that I should win this one at least once.’

Stacy Bregman, who won the season-opening Canon Ladies Tshwane Open last week, and 19-year-old Ivanna Samu both launched a spirited final round attack, but it was too little, too late. Bregman fired a 67 and Samu 68 to tie for second 213.

Buhai maintained the good form that earned her a runner-up finish in Tshwane last week. She made make a flying start with an opening four-under-par 68 in City of Joburg showpiece and followed with successive rounds of 70.

‘I made back-to-back birdies at 10 and 11 to go 10-under, and I had an eight shot lead with six holes to play,’ said Buhai. ‘I guarded against not getting complacent, but the wind got a bit tricky down the last couple of holes and I did let my concentration slip just a touch.

‘I overshot 16 and 18, because I couldn’t risk a shorter club with water in front of both greens, but at least the cushion was big enough to cover the bogeys.’

Buhai will miss the next three weeks to compete on the LPGA Tour in Australia, Thailand and Singapore.

‘I really wanted to perform well to put myself in a good position this week and it feels incredibly good to achieve what I set out to do,’ she said. ‘This gives me a big boost of confidence.

‘I felt a bit rusty at Pretoria Country Club last week, but I improved round for round. My coach and I (Doug Wood) put in some work over the weekend and I struck the ball really well this week. I also started seeing my lines clearly, although I feel I need to work the putter some more, but I’m really looking forward to taking this game on tour.’

After dropping a shot at the fourth, Bregman put her foot on the gas pedal and reeled in four birdies on the trot. She picked up another pair of birdies at 12 and 14 for her 67. Samu also overshot the final green and her chip shot ran 12 feet past the hole, but she holed a clutch putt for 68.

Swiss golfer Azelia Meichtry shot a final round 73 to join Nobuhle Dlamini in a tie for third. Her 217 total earned Meichtry the Leading Amateur honour, as well. The country’s top ranked junior, Woo-Ju Son, took second on 224.

Picture of Buhai and her trophy courtesy of Petrie Oeschger/Sunshine Ladies Tour

Final Round Result
All competitors RSA unless otherwise specified and amateurs are indicated as AMA:
208 – Ashleigh Buhai 68 70 70
213 – Stacy Bregman 72 74 67, Ivanna Samu 70 75 68
217 – Azelia Meichtry AMA (SUI) 73 71 73, Nobuhle Dlamini (SWZ) 77 67 73
218 – Alexandra Lennartsson (SWE) 73 73 72, Kiran Matharu (ENG) 72 74 72, Carrie Park (KOR) 72 72 74
219 – Emie Peronnin (FRA) 70 77 72
220 – Lauren Taylor (ENG) 70 70 80
221 – Anna Sventrup (SWE) 74 74 73, Hayley Davis (ENG) 73 71 77
222 – Hanna Roos (SWE) 69 77 76
223 – Bonita Bredenhann (NAM) 75 75 73, Mariell Bruun (NOR) 72 75 76
224 – Woo-Ju Son AMA 74 77 73, Rachael Goodall (ENG) 74 76 74
225 – Nastja Banovec (SVN) 78 75 72, Laura Fuenfstueck (GER) 76 75 74, Casandra Hall AMA 76 75 74, Monique Smit 77 73 75, Kiera Floyd AMA 73 76 76, Caitlyn Macnab AMA 78 71 76
226 – Tandi Mc Callum 77 74 75, Anne-Lise Caudal (FRA) 76 75 75, Yolanda Duma 74 76 76, Rachel Raastad (NOR) 78 72 76, Kim Williams 75 74 77
227 – Alana van Greuning 76 75 76, Maria Beautell (ESP) 78 69 80
228 – Lora Assad 77 74 77
229 – Eleonora Galletti AMA 79 73 77
230 – Tijana Kraljevic 74 79 77, Francesca Cuturi 76 77 77, Chloe Royston AMA 77 73 80
231 – Valeria Martinoli (SUI) 77 77 77, Hannah Arnold (USA) 78 76 77
234 – Sofia Gronberg-Whitmore (SWE) 81 73 80
235 – Bertine Strauss 76 77 82
237 – Lejan Lewthwaite 76 78 83
240 – Ethel Ruthenberg AMA 82 72 86


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