Nelson Mandela University student JP van der Watt was crowned champion when the annual Humewood Golf Club championships were held in Port Elizabeth at the weekend.
The first-year B.Comm student took control of the final on the front nine with birdies on the sixth, seventh and ninth holes to end up defeating Pieter Zietsman 4/3.
Earlier on Sunday he had edged Madibaz teammate Altin van der Merwe in a close tussle during the semifinals, winning 1-up.
On Saturday, Van der Merwe won the strokeplay title with rounds of 71 and 69 for a four-under par total of 140.
The 19-year-old Van der Watt, who grew up in George and was educated at Glenwood House, was only playing the famed links layout for the fourth time and had to shrug off a shaky start against Van der Merwe.
“That was one of my worst rounds imaginable,” said Van der Watt. “I think early on I hit a provisional [ball] off nearly every tee box and I was one down after six holes.”
Just over halfway through the front nine he managed to settle down and find some rhythm.
“It started to go much better. That’s when the match really started between us and I was able to win 1-up.”
In contrast, he said the afternoon final against Zietsman saw him produce one of his best rounds of the year.
“Everything was just solid and I knew Pieter’s game was in a really good space, so I had to try to break him down with excellence of my own.
“I was able to find the fairways, hit solid approaches and make the putts. This helped me to turn four up and you shouldn’t really lose it from there.”