June 15, 2024

Charlene Pienaar (right) poses with the SA Blind Golf Open Ladies trophy alongside Guide Rachel Howard (left) and South African Blind Golf Association President Johan Kotze. Credit: South African Blind Golf Association

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SA Blind Golf Open Final Round Wrap

Charlene Pienaar stormed to victory in the Ladies division, shooting rounds of 104 and 100 en route to a mammoth 24-stroke victory over Austria’s Karin Becker.

Pienaar endured a topsy-turvy start to her round with two bogeys and two double-bogeys over her opening four holes. The Benoni Lake Golf Club member refused to be shaken by a triple-bogey at the tricky par-3 5th, carding a bogey at the 6th before a welcome par at the 7th.

Despite dropping four further shots before the turn, Pienaar bounced back with a bogey at the 10th and a second par of the day at the par-3 11h. A third par-3 of the day at the 14th was a fantastic tonic after a 9 at the 13th. Pienaar could afford a few blemishes though with nearest challenger Becker unable to apply much pressure.

After sandwiching bogeys at the 15th and 18th either side of two double-bogeys, Pienaar said she was relieved to get the job done and credited her guide Rachel Howard with helping her get over the line.

“It was a big relief, there’s always a bit of nerves (playing with the lead) but you need to stay positive and have faith as well and it helped especially to have the motivation of my coach Rachel,” said Pienaar.

Slattery seals 4th spot in B2

Garrett Slattery signed for a final round of 101, which along with an opening round of 98  secured fourth position in the B2 division.

Slattery played some steady golf over the front nine, carding pars at the 2nd, 6th and 8th to go along with five bogeys and a triple bogey to make the turn in 44.

Despite beginning the inward half with a bogey-6, Slattery saw his momentum halted by, a 6, a pair of 7s and a 9 which undermined the great work done during his outward nine.

To his credit, two closing bogeys were a nice finishing touch to his day and tournament.

Johan Kotze meanwhile made a marked final round improvement, bettering his first round by six shots en route to a round of 109 and 9th-place on his own in the B2 division.

Slattery, Kotze and the rest of the B2 contingent ended the tournament looking up at runaway winner Tyler Cashman who, at 30-over par for the 36 holes, won by 13-strokes over England’s Andy Gilford.

Conradie the low South African in B3 division

Despite a round on which fared 10 strokes worse than his opening day effort, Ernst Conradie earned a 6th-place finish in the B3 division, edging out Leon Strydom by a single stroke in the process.

Two pars were the highlight of Conradie’s final round 107 which also featured two bogeys. Unfortunately for Conradie a few big numbers made life difficult, a quadruple bogey at the 9th and three triple-bogeys characterising a round in which Conradie failed to replicate the consistency of his opening 97.

Nevertheless, he did enough to finish as low South African with Strydom in 7th and Morne Els’ 9th-place finish ensuring solid local representation in the top-10.

The B3 division was won by Kiefer Jones of Canada who won by six strokes over England’s John Eakin courtesy of a 24-over par tournament tally.

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