HomeSportGolfFollet-Smith tees off at Leopard Rock

Follet-Smith tees off at Leopard Rock

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ZIMBABWE’S leading amateur golfer Ben Follet-Smith will be looking to consolidate his position as the leading amateur golfer in the country when he tees off at the Manicaland Amateur Championship at Leopard Rock Golf Club today.

REPORT BY DANIEL NHAKANISO

The Manicaland Amateur Championship is one of the four major tournaments for local amateur golfers together with the Midlands Amateur, the Zimbabwe Amateur and the Harare Amateur championships.

Follet-Smith goes into this weekend’s  tournament leading the 2013 Zimbabwe Golf Association (ZGA) order of merit standings on 254 points ahead of his nearest rival Clive Nguru who sits in second position on 226 points.

Christain Mbanga of Chapman is in third position ahead of Biggy Chibvuri while the recently crowned Rowland Park Open champion Thembelani Vundla is in fifth position. ZGA vice-president Boniface Chigorimbo told NewsDay Sport in an interview that they were expecting a field of 60 amateur golfers for the tournament which carries valuable order of merit points.

“We are expecting a strong field of 60 amateur golfers from around the country. The Manicaland Amateur Championship is a very important tournament for the amateurs as it counts towards the national amateurs’ order of merit points.

“Ben Follet-Smith currently leads the order of merit standings, but all the other guys who are behind him like Clive Nguru, (Christain) Mbanga and the Hudson brothers, Grant and Bradley, will be aiming to do well and catch up with him,” said Chigorimbo.

With the top players on the order of merit standings eligible to represent the country at the All-Africa Amateur Golf Team Championships to be held in Swaziland in September, a lot will be at stake this weekend.

The tournament format will see the participating players playing 36 holes on the par-72 course today and another 18 holes tomorrow.

US–based Zimbabwe amateur golfer Ray Badenhorst, who is now based at Florida Tech University, won last year’s edition of the Manicaland Amateur Championship held at Hillside Gold Club in Mutare.

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