BY MUNYARADZI MADZOKERE
Top Zimbabwean golfer Scott Vincent delivered the country’s best performance at the Tokyo Olympics after he carded an impressive 67 in the final round of the men’s competition to finish 16th overall on 11-Under (273) at the par-71 Kasumigaseki Country Club in Japan yesterday.
Vincent shot 73 67 66 67 in the four rounds respectively and was just four strokes from the bronze medal playoff in the end, to finish in a respectable position out of 60 golfers in the event.
But the 29-year-old golfer will rue a nightmarish start to the competition which saw him finish the first round two shots above par and 10 from the opening day leader.
However, the athlete, affectionately known as Mhondoro, bounced back strongly in the last three rounds and had the third best score for the day on the third round on Saturday.
And in the final round, Vincent was unlucky to have missed a hole-in-one in the 3-par 16th hole, but in the end, five birdies and a bogey in the fourth hole helped him get four more shots to his total.
Vincent finished his maiden Olympics campaign as the joint highest ranked African alongside South African Christiaan Bezuidenhout, who also finished the competition with a 67.
American Alexander Schauffele claimed gold in the competition with an 18-under total, while South Africa-born Rory Sabbatini, who represents Slovakia, won silver one shot behind.
Seven players who finished on 15-under had to be separated by a playoff to determine who takes the bronze medal, and Taiwanese Cheng-tsung Pan emerged the victor.
Vincent was the last Zimbabwean athlete at the Olympics in Japan after sprinter Ngoni Makusha bowed out in the Heats of the 100m men competition on Saturday.
Last week, teenage female swimmer Donata Katai recorded her personal best time, but failed to make the semi-finals in the 100m
She finished an overall 34th, while male swimmer Peter Wetzlar set the Zimbabwe 100m freestyle record, but his time of 50:50 seconds was not enough to make the semis.
Rower Peter Purcell-Gilpin made the quarter-finals of the men single sculls and came second in the D-Final to rank 20th out of 32 rowers.
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