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Birdie blitz as Broomhead wins SA Stroke Play on ‘very, very good’ Firethorn

by | Feb 25, 2022

While Durban Country Club’s Jonathan Broomhead capped an unforgettable week at Randpark by winning the South African Stroke Play Championship with a superb, record-equalling 27-under-par 261 aggregate, the Firethorn course was given a very positive thumbs up by GolfRSA tournament director David Younge.

“It was so unfortunate that the Firethorn greens took such a battering for the Joburg Open late last year,” said Younge. “But overall we found Firethorn in very, very good condition for the SA Stroke Play. Yes, the greens were a little slow and a little soft” (understandable considering the work the greens staff have had to do to them to kick-start their recovery).

But Younge also said there has been a big improvement in the putting surfaces. “They ran true and even the seventh green, where the damage had been particularly bad, was puttable and proof of this was that a lot of birdies were made there. Overall, the tee-boxes and the fairways were in exceptional shape and the greens were fine – definitely more than adequate.”

With his rounds of 67, 64, 64 and 66, Broomhead equalled the 72-hole tournament record of 261 – set by Sweden’s Oliver Gillberg at Pecanwood in 2018.

Broomhead edged GolfRSA No 1 Christiaan Maas, the 2021 SA Amateur champion, by two shots and finished four strokes ahead of Scotland’s top-ranked Rory Franssen. GolfRSA National Squad members Christiaan Burke and Sam Bairstow from England tied for fourth on 22-under. “It’s been an unbelievable week; unforgettable,” said Broomhead. “In the final round we had the best amateurs in the country and some of the top golfers from Scotland and England in the top 10, contesting for the title, and to come out on top is the most incredible feeling ever. This is definitely the best week of my life.”

Randpark’s Senior Golf Manager Rikert Schalkwyk said, “looking at the scores, there couldn’t have been much wrong with the course.” To back up Rikert’s statement, there were no less than 20 players with aggregates of eight under-par or better, and six of these were under 270. Yes, this was a reflection of the high standard of the play but a birdie blitz like this is not possible if a course’s greens are not running smooth and true.

Check out the great scores …

261 Jonathan Broomhead 67 64 64 66
263 Christiaan Maas 64 65 63 71
265 Rory Franssen SCO 68 68 64 65
266 Sam Bairstow ENG 69 67 65 65; Christiaan Burke 69 65 64 68
267 Altin van der Merwe 63 69 70 65
271 Kyle de Beer 69 65 68 69
273 Yurav Premlall 69 66 69 69
276 Casey Jarvis 71 67 67 71; Keegan Mclachlan 67 70 72 67
277 Jordan Duminy 71 72 67 67
278 Samuel Simpson 70 68 71 69; Jean Pierre van der Watt 68 71 70 69
279 Matthew Mcclean IRL 74 68 66 71; Gregg Gilson 74 67 68 70; Jack Broun SCO 72 68 70 69; Adam Breen 70 70 66 73
280 Simon du Plooy 72 64 72 72; Keagan Crosbie 71 67 72 70; Dawid Opperman 67 72 69 72

Randpark’s own Stefan Jacobs tied for 24th on five-under 283.

Final Results : 

Story written by Randpark member Grant Winter and Lali Stander on behalf of GolfRSA.
Photo – South African Golf Association Acting President Henk Smith hands the SA Stroke Play trophy to the 2022 champion Jono Broomhead at Randpark Club; credit GolfRSA.




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