April 2013

Africa and Jacobs reach SA Boys quarterfinals

Keelan Africa in action at the SA Boys u19 Championships (credit: Deon Smit)

Two SAGDB youngsters from Boland, 16 year old Keelan Africa from Riverside GC and 15 year old Dylan Jacobs from Kuilsriver put in excellent performances to reach the quarter-final stage of the recent SA Boys u19 Championships. The matchplay event is one of the highlights of the South African junior golfing calendar.

On the way Keelan claimed a huge scalp by defeating the defending champion and reigning Sanlam SA Amateur champion Thriston Lawrence in the round of 32. Thriston birdied the par-five 18th to level the match, but the Keelan held his nerve to dispose of the country's number one junior at the third extra hole.

Keelan then made the final eight after knocking out Ruan Conradie 4&2.

In the round of 32 Dylan won 1-up against Angus Ellis, before beating David Meyers on the second extra hole in the round of 16.

Unfortunately both boys lost their quarter-final games by a single hole.

Keelan lost to the eventual winner Zander Gous from Mpumalanga after a back and forth battle that was only decided on the 18th. The SAGDB golfer birdied the opening hole, but dropped a shot at the second and the pair both parred the third.

Keelan birdied the fourth against a drop from his opponent, but sacrificed his lead again with a bogey at the sixth. Both players bogeyed the seventh and the match remained all square through eight holes until Zander assumed control with back-to-back birdies around the turn. The lead changed hands a few times on the back nine until Zander birdied the 18th to win 1-Up.

Dylan went out to KwaZulu-Natal's Aheurin Gounden, who later went on to face Zander in the final. Aheurin was 3-up through four holes, but gave back two shots with successive bogeys at the eighth and ninth.

Dylan responded with back-to-back bogeys at the 12th and 13th but the landscaped changed slightly when Dylan birdied the 14th and his opponent dropped a shot at the 16th. The KZN golfer however held a one shot lead playing the last and sealed the win when both players parred the 18th.

Keelan and Dylan are both also members of the Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation.