16th March 2018 | Sunshine Tour
Confident Sefatsa claims Vusi Ngubeni Stroke Play
Teboho Sefatsa claimed a one-stroke victory over Makhetha Mazibuko when he shot a final round four-under 68 at Vusi Ngubeni Stroke Play to total nine-under-par 279 and reclaim his Sunshine Tour playing card on Friday.
Entering the final round in a share of the lead with promising amateur Franklin Manchest, Sefatsa got right into it as he birdied the par-five first hole, made par on the next hole, and that was followed by another birdie. It did not end there for the Glendower Golf Club professional as he went on to make two more birdies on holes five and eight before dropping his first shot of the day on the ninth.
“It was all confidence,” he said of the solid week he had at Modderfontein Golf Club, “The self-belief I have, I believe in my game again, there’s no doubt. I knew I was going to hit some bad shots but I didn’t overreact about those because I always knew I was good enough to recover.”
That confidence was obvious for all to see throughout the week because despite dropping that shot at the turn in the final round, Sefatsa picked himself up with a birdie on the 10th and following two straight pars, he made a further gain on the 13th. As was the case on his front nine, he dropped a shot on the last hole but that would do no harm to his scores at that point.
He also credited good preparation for his victory and said having a good game plan also helped him in his quest to reclaim his card.
“My preparation was spot on for this week,” he said, “and I had a game plan which I stuck to and it all paid off because I am standing today as the champion of the Vusi Ngubeni Stroke Play for 2018. So, now I just look forward to the season ahead, but there’s another big week next week at Final Stage Q-school, and I am playing there.”
Behind Sefatsa on a total of eight-under for the week, Makhetha Mazibuko shot the best score of the day when he blazed to an unblemished six-under 66. Three birdies on both nines of the Modderfontein layout saw the last season’s Eye of Africa PGA Championship runner-up piling some pressure on Sefatsa but he eventually fell short by a single stroke.
But the talk of the week was the little-known Manchest. A former GolfRSA player, Manchest showed maturity beyond his years this week as he went toe-to-toe with established players such as Sefatsa, Mazibuko and Heinrich Bruiners among others, and his third-place finish was well-deserved. He finished the week two-under par.
The top-15 players and ties at Vusi Ngubeni have now earned their Sunshine Tour playing cards while players who finished 16th to the 30th player and ties get an opportunity to redeem themselves at next week’s Final Stage Qualifying School at Randpark Golf Club.
Players who secured their cards:
Teboho Sefatsa, Makhetha Mazibuko, Franklin Manchest, Allister de Kock, Heinrich Bruiners, Irvin Mazibuko, Altaaf Bux, Thabo Moraba, Adriel Poonan, Yubin Jung, Phumlani Maluka, Derick Petersen, Gerrit Foster, Sipho Bujela, Jabulane Mabilane, Thabang Simon, Keelan Africa and Fezekile Kana.