South AfricaÂs top-ranked amateur Haydn Porteous will compete against the touring professionals when the Sunshine Big Easy TourÂs season-opener at Roodepoort Country Club.
Porteous has a stellar amateur record and has shone in 2013, winning the PrinceÂs Grant Inviational in January before successfully defending his title at the SA Stroke Play Championship in February.
And playing amongst the professionals is not new ground for the youngster, who has competed at the last two South African Open Championships.
He also played at Big Easy Modderfontein in 2012, where he shot a first-round 69 on his way to a share of sixth, which proved that he can keep up with the rising stars of the Sunshine Tour.
While there is still plenty of distance between the open amateurs and the touring professionals, Porteus is closing down that gap. The opportunity to do so comes from an initiative between the Sunshine Tour and the South African Golf Association, whereby four amateur invitations per Big Easy tournament are given out.
With Roodepoort hosting its first Big Easy tournament, it may be an event of firsts. If ever there was an amateur who could win on the Big Easy Tour it was surely Porteus.
Photo: Dale Boyce