Article: Michael Vlismas
From Wednesday to Friday this week, the amateur winners of the previous five tournaments around South Africa will join the country’s leading professionals in the final on the Jack Nicklaus-designed St Francis Links.
The amateurs will be competing for an overall prize of a dream golf trip anywhere in the world, while the professionals will be vying for glory in a series that in a decade has been supported by Gary Player, Ernie Els and Retief Goosen and featured rising stars such as Louis Oosthuizen, Charl Schwartzel, Branden Grace and George Coetzee.
This year the series began with breakthrough victories by Jacques Blaauw, who won the first two tournaments at Simola and Selborne Park Golf Club.
George professional Heinrich Bruiners became the second maiden winner when he beat a strong field and equally challenging golf course to win at Euphoria Golf Estate.
Jean Hugo won a record eighth title on the Vodacom Origins of Golf series with his seven-stroke victory at Langebaan Golf Estate. He also equalled the achievements of Darren Fichardt and Thomas Aiken in claiming the biggest margin of victory on the series.
And Andrew Curlewis won his second title in as many weeks on the Sunshine Tour when he beat Lyle Rowe in a playoff at Parys Golf and Country Estate.
St Francis Links will provide a good challenge for the professional field. The last time this course hosted the Vodacom Origins of Final was in 2008, when Jaco van Zyl closed with a 76 to win on two under par. Both Van Zyl and second-placed Bradford Vaughan were the only two players to finish the tournament under par.