Athlone pupil joins elite club of pre-teen ace golfers

2016-04-14 12:30
Athlone Primary School pupil Yarin Pillay (8) holds up the ball that got him his hole-in-one at the Victoria Country Club on Saturday.

Athlone Primary School pupil Yarin Pillay (8) holds up the ball that got him his hole-in-one at the Victoria Country Club on Saturday. (Ian Carbutt, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - A local golfing prodigy has entered an elite class of international sportsmen after bagging his first hole-in-one at just eight years old.

Athlone Primary School pupil Yarin Pillay, who stands only a little taller than his golf club, now joins the ranks of golfing greats like Tiger Woods who played an ace, or hole-in-one, as a pre-teenager.

During a routine four-ball golf match on Saturday, Yarin pulled out a six-iron club, swung the perfect drive and aced the eighth hole at the Victoria Country Club.

Since his father, Dhayendran Pillay, taught him a few swings when he was three years old, Yarin naturally took to the sport and has since — under the coaching of Lee Bromley — joined the Midlands Golf Club where he has dropped his handicap to 32 within less than a year.

Speaking about his hole-in-one, Yarin said after he made the shot, he only realised what had happened when colleagues in his social golfing club — the Goodfellas Golf Club — started screaming from the other end of the green.

“They were screaming that I got a hole-in-one and I ran to the hole. I was very excited,” Yarin said.

“My partner said it was the first time he had ever seen a boy hit a hole-in-one.”

Ecstatic about her son’s achievement, Yarin’s mother Sumaiya Maistry said the accomplishment was a product of his “determination and hard work”.

“He is the only child I know who will wake up at 6.30 am and make us bring him to the range. We are very proud of him,” Maistry said.

Yarin received a cash prize from his social golf club, but his parents jokingly said they would be using the money to reimburse their own bank balance after they had to keep to golfing tradition and buy a round of drinks at the club during the post-game award ceremony.

Yarin said he would like to one day qualify as a doctor, but “wouldn’t mind” being a professional golfer “as long as it pays”.

“My favourite golfer is Jordan Spieth and I would like to keep playing golf for the rest of my life and hopefully get more holes-in-one,” Yarin said.

• amil.umraw@witness.co.za

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  golf  |  sport

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