17th October 2019 | Sunshine Ladies Tour
Dlamini in ascendancy again at VOG Selborne
16 October 2019 – Nobuhle Dlamini’s dream season continued with a three-shot victory in the Women’s Competition of the Vodacom Origins of Golf Series on Wednesday.
Last year, the big-hitting Eswatini golfer showed off her expertise in the wind when she broke her Sunshine Ladies Tour duck with a wire-to-wire win at the Wild Coast Sun Country Club and those same skills earned her the first round at Selborne Golf Estate, Hotel and Spa Club.
Dlamini fired a two-under-par 70 in testing conditions and started the final round three shots clear of the field.
The 2019 Investec Property Fund Order of Merit winner staved off spirited challenges from British pair Lauren Taylor and Jane Turner and South Africa’s Lejan Lewthwaite on the last day and clinched her fourth victory of the season with a birdie finish.
“It was a strange two days,” said Dlamini, who closed with a 73 to win by three shots on one-under-par 143. “In the first round, the wind was strong, but it was blowing in the right direction. I was pretty accurate off the tees and put myself in good positions to score.
“In the final round, the wind blew from the opposite direction and the course played really tough. I did hit the ball well, but the putter was cold. I’m thrilled with the win, though. It’s great to have this series for the younger professionals and for players like myself and the others who are on a break from the Ladies European Tour (LET). It’s really good to stay competitive.”
Taylor clinched the runner-up spot with successive rounds of 73, while 2019 SA Women’s Masters champion Lewthwaite and reigning reigning SuperSport Ladies Challenge champion Turner from Scotland shared third on one seven-over.
Dlamini was in imperious form during the 2019 Sunshine Ladies Tour, reeling in titles in the Dimension Data Ladies Challenge at Fancourt, the Joburg Ladies Open at Soweto Country Club and the Investec Royal Swazi Open for Ladies at her home course in May.
She arrived at Selborne after enjoying her best two finishes on the Ladies European Tour.
“With my status, I had to make the most of every start this year to try and secure my playing privileges for next season,” Dlamini said. “I got into eight events, but I missed a few cuts so the pressure was on. Then I had a top 12 in France and top 15 in Spain, which boosted my ranking. I didn’t perform great in India, but a 64th place finish took me to 83rd in the rankings.
“The top 80 on the Order of Merit will keep their cards, so hopefully I make it. I’m still on the reserve list for the Spanish Open at the end of November, but I am into the last event, the new Magical Kenya Ladies Open. The ladies who haven’t played six events will fall out and if I do well in Kenya I should be okay for next year.
“That’s why I’m looking forward to the Vodacom Origins Series final at Simola Country Club. It’s one more chance to stay competitive and from what I hear, it will be a strong field.”
Dlamini will be facing stiff competition at Simola Country Club on 29-30 October with the celebrated Lee-Anne Pace making a welcome return to South African shores alongside French golfer Anna-Lise Caudal, who denied Dlamini in the Jabra Ladies Classic at Glendower and five-time Sunshine Ladies Tour winner Stacy Bregman, among others.
“It should be a really good contest between us,” Dlamini said. “I’ve been told that Simola is very beautiful, but being a Jack Nicklaus design, you know it will be very good test. I’ll spend the next couple weeks working on my game and I’ll be ready for the final.”
143 Nobuhle Dlamini SZW 70 73
146 Lauren Taylor ENG 73 73
151 Lejan Lewthwaite RSA 75 76; Jane Turner SCO 76 75
161 Casandra Hall RSA 82 79
164 Brittney-Fay Berger RSA 83 81
PHOTO: Vodacom Origins of Golf Series Selborne winner Nobuhle Dlamini receives her trophy from Eleni Kwinana from Vodacom; credit Tyrone Winfield.
Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of the Sunshine Ladies Tour.
16th October 2019 | Sunshine Ladies Tour
Dlamini dominates in wind to lead at Selborne
SELBORNE, 15 October 2019 – Nobuhle Dlamini lined up her fourth victory this season when she tamed the wind to take the lead in the Vodacom Origins of Golf Series at Selborne Golf Estate, Spa and Hotel on Tuesday.
Teeing off in a three-to-four club wind that raced around the championship layout on the KwaZulu-Natal coast, the big-hitting Swazi golfer was in imperious form.
Dlamini fired six birdies, including three over the four closing holes, to offset a double bogey at the par five third and further drops on six and 17 and a two-under-par 70 propelled the 2019 Investec Property Fund Order of Merit winner straight to the top of the leaderboard.
The 36-hole women’s event is played concurrently with the Vodacom Origins of Golf Pro-Am and serves as the curtain-raiser for Sunshine Tour’s main tournament.
Dlamini leads by three shots from Sunshine Ladies Tour regular Lauren Taylor and is five shots clear of reigning SA Women’s Masters champion Lejan Lewthwaite.
Taylor got off to a birdie start and eagled the third. The English golfer three-under after 10 holes, but she gave shots back to the field with successive bogeys on 12 and 13 and dropped a further three shots after a final birdie on the par four 14th to post a one-over 73.
Lewthwaite overcame a bogey-bogey start with birdies on three and nine and made two more on the bounce after the turn to dip two-under, but her good work was undone with double bogeys on 14 and 15 and a third bogey on 16 will see the Serengeti golfer start the final round on three-over.
Jane Turner withstood the wind for three days at the Wild Coast Sun Country Club to win the 2019 SuperSport Ladies Challenge, presented by Sun International, but the Scottish golfer also had trouble navigating the strong winds on Tuesday and carded four-under 76 to finish fourth.
Serengeti’s Casandra Hall – already a two-time winner in the Vodacom Origins of Golf Series – posted 82 and fellow rookie Brittney-Fay Berger from Kloof Country Club signed for 83.
More wind is forecast for today’s final round, but a later start could see the chasing pack go low enough to catch Dlamini.
Written and released by Lali Stander.
1st October 2019 | Sunshine Ladies Tour
Gorlei set to join new generation of SA women’s golf stars in pro ranks
1 October 2019 – As a number of Sunshine Ladies Tour professionals take advantage of the opportunity given by the Sunshine Tour to compete alongside the men in the Vodacom Origins of Golf series, it’s reaffirmed the belief that this new generation in South African women’s golf is ready to make their mark.
Cara Gorlei certainly thinks so, and is hoping to be one of them as she embarks on her professional career.
The former star of South African women’s amateur golf has just returned from a golf scholarship at the University of Arkansas, and is more motivated than ever to be part of a new generation of golfers hoping to fly the South African flag on the tours of the world.
“I think the women’s golf talent in South Africa has come through in stages. Recently we had Ashleigh Buhai and Lee-Anne Pace and that group of players. We’ve had a bit of a lull and age gap now. But hopefully we can start a new era of good players representing South Africa on Tour,” said Gorlei.
She has only just returned from competing in the South African Women’s Inter-Provincial, where she helped Western Province to a runner-up finish at the Riviera on Vaal Country Club, and will not be participating in this week’s Vodacom Origins of Golf in Stellenbosch.
But while practising at Stellenbosch Golf Club, she was keenly aware of the opportunity the Vodacom Origins of Golf series gives her generation of golfers.
The five-tournament Vodacom Origins of Golf series has thrown its considerable support by South African women’s golf by inviting Sunshine Tour Ladies professionals to participate in each of the 36-hole pro-ams on the series.
These golfers have the double incentive of competing with their pro-am team for the betterball prize money on offer, as well as in their own internal competition with exclusive prize money for them.
And most importantly, it gives them competitive playing time before the Sunshine Ladies Tour resumes in January.
“It’s great and I would have loved to play in this series. I’ve just played my last amateur tournament, so my plans are now to practice as much as I can and then start my pro career on the Sunshine Ladies Tour in January.”
Gorlei recently made an attempt at an LPGA Tour card. She made it through the first cut in the First Stage of the Qualifying School, but then shot 79 in the final round to miss progressing to the Second Stage.
“I was the only South African to make the first cut. My game is in good shape and I know if I try again I’ll make it. In my time in America I learnt a lot about playing other tours. I learnt to trust the belief other people have in me. Once I was over there and started doing well, I kind of surprised myself. It boosted my confidence a lot. I learnt that if you just put in the hard work, I’ll definitely make it.
“My coach at the University of Arkansas, Shauna Taylor, played a lot on Tour and she has been telling me to just believe in myself and I will win out there. On the college golf scene you play against the top amateurs in the world on some of the top courses in the world. You have the best coaches and facilities, and you just learn so much. I feel if I didn’t do that I wouldn’t be so confident to go onto the Tour right now.”
Written by Michael Vlismas; edits Sunshine Ladies Tour.
25th September 2019 | Sunshine Ladies Tour
Rookie in the Hot Seat at Humewood
Humewood, 24 September 2019 – Western Province rookie Tara Griebenow leads the women’s event in the Vodacom Origins of Golf at Humewood Golf Club in just her second start on the Sunshine Ladies Tour circuit.
The 23-year-old from the Durbanville Golf Club carded a four-over-par 76 in challenging, wet and blustery, conditions on Tuesday.
Brittney-Fay Berger from KwaZulu-Natal trails Griebenow by two shots, while former SA Womens’s Stroke Play Casandra Hall is a further two shots adrift.
“I’m a little surprised, but given the conditions I knew anything could happen this morning,” Griebenow reflected. “The rain made things really difficult initially, but I managed to fire three birdies to recover from a double bogey start on the first. That got the momentum going and it got easier once the sun came out.”
Griebenow only received her PGA South Africa professional licence at the beginning of September, so leading from the front in professional tournament is brand new territory and with the infamous Port Elizabeth wind expected to show up in the afternoon, her two-shot lead is anything but secure.
“Holding the overnight lead is one thing, but I’ll have to hang on tomorrow,” she said.
The women’s event is being played in conjunction with the pro-am tournament and the Vodacom Origins of Golf players will tee off at 8am.