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Young SA golfers Higgo and Nienaber dazzle

by | May 10, 2021

GARRICK Higgo couldn’t have been any more chirpier in the Canary Islands, while fellow young professional Wilco Nienaber couldn’t hold back the tears at Fancourt.

As South African golfers continued their remarkable three-week run on the European Tour and Challenge Tour, Higgo – who turns 22 on Wednesday – won the Canary Islands Championship on Sunday in Tenerife by six shots with a birdie blitz of note, closing with a 64 for a 72-hole aggregate of 27-under 257. This comes just two Sundays after he captured the Gran Canaria Lopesan Open on a fantastic return of 25-under-par 255.

His low scoring – 52-under for the two European Tour events – has been absolutely extraordinary. Taking his 18-hole returns in the two victories into consideration, we get this: 65-64-63-63-66-63-64-64!

Birdies and eagles in profusion in the Canary Islands was what it has been all about for this super talented lefthander who has burst onto the world scene like no other young South African professional with the exception perhaps of Ernie Els. Just for good measure, Garrick’s closing 64 on Sunday included a hole-in-one at the par-3 seventh hole.

At the beginning of last year, Higgo was an unknown rookie in professional golf. Now he’s a star on the world stage. His earnings for three weeks in the Canary Islands – in between the two wins he tied for eighth on 16-under in the Tenerife Open won by compatriot Dean Burmester (on 25-under) – equates to about 500,000 euros, or a hefty R8,5-million. Talk about making quick money.

At Fancourt, meanwhile, South Africa’s big-hitting Nienaber outgunned Sweden’s Henric Sturehed in a sudden-death play-off to win the Dimension-Data Pro-Am, which is part of the European Challenge Tour. Nienaber, who only turned 21 last month, opened with a 69 on the Montagu course, then went 64-71 on Outenuiqua, before closing with a superb 65 on demanding Montagu for a 269 aggregate. The Swede also posted 269 but Wilco – he of the 400-yard-plus drives – sealed victory at the third extra hole of sudden-death for his debut win both at Sunshine Tour and Challenge Tour level. He bags the equivalent of
R930 000 for the victory and – even more valuable – earns himself a coveted European Tour card. And thrown into the mix will be a start in the World Golf Championship-FedEx St Jude Classic in August in America. He hits the ball pretty much as far as Bryson DeChambeau. And, let’s be honest, our boy’s got a better looking swing. Dale Hayes, commentating at Fancourt, reckons Nienaber is so long off the tee and so talented that he would not be surprised if he one day wins a Major. And the men behind the microphones in the Canary Islands are predicting Higgo can do the same.

South Africans have now won the last three European Tour events – Higgo, Burmester and Higgo, and the last three Challenge Tour events – Brandon Stone, JC Ritchie and Nienaber who felt so emotional after sealing victory that he couldn’t hold back the tears.

Written by Randpark member Grant Winter.

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Golf Terms & Conditions

1. The Club reserves the right to impose a cancellation fee of up to R250 for any tee-times booked in peak times (as determined by the club) which are cancelled within 24 hours regardless of whether that actual member made the booking and /or cancellation.

2. The Club reserves the right to impose a no-show fee of up to R500 for any tee-times booked in peak times (as determined by the club) where the member failed to show up regardless of whether that actual member made the booking and /or cancellation.

3. Golf specific disclaimer: When entering the Club’s premises, the member is fully aware and understands the risk and hazards inherent to the golf environment which includes but is not limited to the risk of being struck by flying golf balls and lightning strikes. In the case of the latter, the member further acknowledges that the shelters provided on the golf course are rain shelters only and are not lightning proof and the club accepts no responsibility in respect of death or injury of persons or destruction or damage to property as a result of any lightning strike whether it occurs at or near a rain shelter or at any other place. All persons using any such rain shelters or any other shelter on the property do so entirely at their own risk. It is to be noted that whilst the Club makes use of an automated lightning detection system, the Club makes no warranties and accepts no responsibility with respect to either the reliability or accuracy of the equipment. It is further noted that a member always has the right to stop play if he/she deems any condition, including lightning, to be a danger to his or her personal safety.

4. A member is not entitled to a refund of golf fees in the event a competition or round is cancelled due to weather.

5. The notional base number of rounds for a CLUB10 and CLUB20 playing cards is 10 & 20 respectively regardless of any reference to an unlimited playing card. When these golf round thresholds have been completed the cost of the playing cards has been consumed. The rounds cannot be carried over to the following financial year, and thus lapse on 31 March.

6. Unlimited golf is subject to booking restrictions as per the specific membership category. The rounds cannot be carried over to the following financial year, and thus lapse on 31 March.

7. Graduates may book for a Sunday PM two weeks in advance via the booking ladies and 11 days in advance on the online platform. Bookings for the weekend will open on a Thursday (2 days before) at 06:00 am. We will introduce a graduate booking sheet which will allow graduates to add their names for a slot which the booking ladies will fill closer to the weekend. Saturday morning games will be charged at R500.00 – all other periods include the Unlimited ticket.

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1. Upon the club receiving this application form, signed terms and conditions, letter of good standing from previous club and credit check approval, an invoice will be sent and membership will only become active upon full upfront payment of all applicable fees and/or signature of a debit order arrangement and payment of first instalment. If a debit order arrangement is signed, the first instalment of membership is payable via EFT, there after the debit order arrangement will take effect.

2. Membership at Randpark is subject to approval by committee. A probation period of 3 months will apply to all new applicants. In this time Randpark reserves the right to refund unsuccessful applicants.

3. Family Membership is subject to membership of principal member.

4. Club membership would without interruption continue year on year but is subject to the payment of an annual fee as determined by the club.

5. The membership may be terminated by the member giving the club twenty business days’ notice in writing of his/her intention to do so.

6. The Club reserves the right to impose a 10% cancellation fee on a member who elects to cancel his/her membership during a financial year; however, no cancellation fee will be charged if a member gives notice not to renew his/her membership at the end of the club’s financial year.

7. There is a 3 month "cool off" period applicable if a member elects to cancel his/her membership. If a member reinstates his membership within this period the Club reserves the right to charge an entrance fee.

8. The Club may cancel a member’s membership if the member is in material breach of his/her obligation to pay annual subscription fees and the Club has given the member twenty business days’ notice in writing to remedy this breach and the member fails to do so.

9. The Club may suspend a member that is in default on his membership fees paid on debit order if that debit order is not successful. The Club will inform the member of this and the member has 3 business days to rectify his/her account. If the 3 business days lapse without any payment of outstanding amount the club reserves the right to suspend the member.  Membership will only be reinstated upon receipt of amount in arrears. If a member has 3 consecutive failed debit orders without arrears being paid up, the Club may cancel his/her membership given twenty business days' notice in writing to remedy this breach and the member fails to do so. When a member is suspended he is not deemed to be a member.

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14. By signature hereto, the member expressly acknowledges he has read, and understands, the following disclaimers from the Club Constitution and the Club Bye-Laws.

15. General disclaimer: Randpark Club does not accept liability or responsibility whatsoever in respect of death or injury of person or destroying or damage to property or loss of any nature, whether arising from negligence or any other cause including lightning, which is suffered by any member or any person who enters the club premises and/or uses the golf course or any other amenities or facilities provided. Members and other users of the Club facilities use the facilities at their own risk and are advised to insure themselves for loss and injuries they may suffer and for claims against themselves.

16. A member is not entitled to a refund of golf fees in the event a competition or round is cancelled due to weather.

17. Vouchers which may be given to a member upon joining are given on a complimentary basis and do not form part of the subscription.