The 39th SAGES National Championship for 2015, was hosted by the Kouga SAGES branch at the St Francis Bay and St Francis Links Golf Clubs. The tournament committee of the Kouga branch, with the assistance of Jeff Clause, CEO of St Francis Links and Willie Uys, from St Francis Bay Golf Club, excelled themselves in managing this SAGES prestigious event.
Both clubs went out of their way to welcome our SAGES members, and even made structural changes to their buildings to accommodate a split of 264 players. Jeff Clause, took on the challenging task to field that number of senior players.
What made this task more challenging and to even the playing conditions, was to arrange pairing of players, comply with golf cart requirements and splitting branch teams on the two courses.
It was a great experience to play these two challenging courses, which were in an excellent condition. The rule for SAGES national tournaments, is that all players play from the same tee-boxes. It is therefore required to set up courses by cutting fairways back or moving tee-boxes forward to allow all players to reach the fairways. This especially was paramount in the windy conditions experienced on the links course.
The wind really played a part during the Monday and Tuesday in that golf was almost postponed from Tuesday to the Wednesday.
Fortunately it was decided not to, as Wednesday was met with even worse windy conditions.
The format of the first two days of the tournament is a betterball pairing as well as a combined fourball team, which was won by Eastern Free State on a count out with Lower South Coast on 165 points. The final two days were played in Medal format for the A division and Individual Points Stableford format in all other divisions. On average, players scored four shots over their handicaps.
With a sigh of relief, all were met by much better playing conditions on Thursday and Friday, which was evident in the winning scores.
The CANSA team, under the leadership of Maria Scholtz, scanned more than 100 players, of which 43 were referred for further examination and treatment.
A Division – Champion
Kobus Coetzer (JAKARANDA) 155 (C/O)
Tienie Maritz (E Province) 79pts
Antonie Abrahamse (Waterberg) 77pts
Jack Botha (ERand)76pts
Dirk Odendaal (J Gowans) 82pts
Priscilla Petersen (WP) 73pts
As per our agreement with SANLAM, the main sponsor, SAGES raise funds annually in favour of CANSA. More than R400,000 was raised by the 29 SAGES branches during 2014, with a total amount of R3.1million raised over the past six years.
The branch winners, set up in three categories, are rewarded with an invitation by SANLAM to be guest to play in the SANLAM/CANSA Challenge finals at Sun City during October.
The branch winners in the three categories are:
- Small branches – Natal Central
- Medium sized – West Rand
- Large branches – Highveld
At the SAGES annual general meeting held during the event the management committee for the following year was selected:
SAGES National President – Bokkie Nell
Vice President – Peet Roets
National Treasurer – Trevor Woollett
National Secretary – Elfie Alston
Visit SAGES web-site at www:sagesseniorgolfers.co.za for more details.
SAGES, a Senior Amateur Golfers Association, has 29 branches with a membership of around 2 400 members country wide.
Regional monthly tournaments are hosted by the branches, as well as combined tournaments where three or four branches have combined tournaments.