PMB’s budding duo reflect on winning amateur title with KZN

2009-10-15 00:00

TWO of Pietermaritzburg’s young golfers played a key role in the recent interprovincial win for KwaZulu-Natal at Durban Country Club.

Daniel Greene and Christiann van der Merwe of Gowrie Farm and Victoria Country Clubs, respectively, had excellent personal records during the week, and they contributed mightily to KwaZulu-Natal’s first title in 10 years.

“I had the honour of getting the ball rolling on the first morning,” Van der Merwe said this week.

“I knew that I could set the tone for the week, and I was very relieved when I rifled a sweet two-iron down the middle.

“Our team manager, Ivan Curlewis, told us that one of the South African Golf Association (Saga) officials thought we would get thumped on the first day, and so that was all the motivation we needed.”

KwaZulu-Natal went on to hammer a strong Western Province side nine-and-a-half to two-and-half on day one, to make a massive statement of intent.

Greene, lanky in height and in length off the tee, was voted most valuable player of the tournament.

“It was a great week for us, obviously, and I was very happy to play as well as I did.”

Greene garnered eight-and-half points out of a possible 10, as he showed the form that he hopes will take him into the professional ranks at the end of the year.

“I am planning to go to qualifying school at year end, and to play and beat some of the guys I will be competing with for a card was very heartening.”

Greene, a talented sportsman who has also played Premier League cricket for Midlands, only took up the game seriously last year and has made significant strides.

“Dan has had an amazing run,” Van der Merwe enthused of his regular training partner.

“He is so gifted at whatever he does, and he led from the front brilliantly that week.”

Greene took on and convincingly beat Western Province’s Springbok cap Nicol van Wyk on day one, and never looked back. The next four days saw KwaZulu-Natal build on their early succcess, with wins over Boland and Gauteng North before a pivotal clash against Free State and Northern Cape.

“They had come in as dark horses, but they had become our main rivals for the title,” Van der Merwe explained.

“We kicked into top gear, especially in the singles, and flattened them by the same margin as Western Province on day one.”

Van der Merwe himself had a massive week, ending up unbeaten in the singles.

“You know, it was such a relief to actually pull it off after the hard work and all the travelling down to Durban to ready ourselves for the tournament. Everything just came together so well, and winning it in front of our home crowd made sure that we will never forget that week for the rest of our lives.”

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