Winds cause delays in Arabella tournament

Strong winds buffeted the Overberg coast on Thursday and caused play to be suspended in the second round of the R600,000 Vodacom Origins of Golf presented by Samsung tournament at Arabella Golf Club.


The second round got underway in relatively mild conditions, but the wind picked up throughout the morning, gusting up to 60 kilometres per hour, and forecasts predicted it would gust up 70 kilometres per hour later in the afternoon.


Players, including leader Trevor Fisher Jnr, were unable to steady themselves to play shots, long shots were blown off line, and balls were blown from their stationary positions on putting greens. By the time play was suspended at 11.25am, players had already had their scoring attempts affected.


Weather permitting – and there is heavy rain forecast – play will resume on Friday at 8.25am, and those players who are still to start round two will have their first tee time at 8.35am, and will play in two-balls in an attempt to finish play as quickly as possible.


Fisher had reached seven-under-par on the official scoring system when play was suspended, two strokes clear of fellow overnight leader Rhys West and of Jean Hugo.


A group of four players was on four-under-par – Jacques Blaauw, Adilson Da Silva, Wallie Coetsee and Ulrich van den Berg.


“It was bad out there. It was bordering on a joke at times,” said Andrew Curlewis, who won this tournament in 2007.


Curlewis was standing on the putting green trying to keep busy during the delay, but could only laugh as putts he hit would be blown back to his feet.


“In conditions like this, you make up your mind when you’re standing over the ball what you want to hit, and then all of a sudden the gust comes along. Sometimes you’re able to stop in time, but other times you’re halfway into your swing and you’re buggered. It’s luck of the draw in the conditions like this, and you’re just trying to keep the ball in play.”


With reporting by Michael Vlismas


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