Ahlers getting close to home in Match Play

Number six seed Jaco Ahlers cruised with ominous ease past Warren Abery on Thursday into the round of 16 in the ISPS Handa South African Match Play Championship.

He defeated Abery 5&3 and is looking set for a run to Sunday’s final in the R2-million Sunshine Tour event at Zwartkop Country Club.

Ahlers, who lives just down the road from the club, kept things simple in what was a very one-sided match – Abery won just a single hole, while Ahlers reeled off three in a row from 11 to 13 and then closed out the match with another win on 15.

“I’ve played here a lot,” said Ahlers, “so I wouldn’t say I’m very confident on it, but I feel comfortable.

“I’ve lost a few first league games here,” he laughed, “but I have a few good memories – made some money in social games.”

He kept things simple in the match against Abery. “I just try and play my own game. I don’t try and play aggressively – I just try and put it on the fairway, out it on the green and put the pressure on someone else. I’m not changing my game plan, but it’s good to be able to hit driver sometimes when you normally wouldn’t.”

In other early matches, Wallie Coetsee upset the 30th-ranked Justin Walters 3&1, Ockie Strydom halted the run of Adrian Ford 3&2 and Louis Moolman beat Louis de Jager 4&3.

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