GOLF NEWS - South African golf legend James Kingston managed a back-to-back SA Senior Open win in Plettenberg Bay last week, after successfully defending his title at the Plett Country Club.
The tournament, which is part of the Sunshine Senior Tour, started at the Plettenberg Bay Country Club on Tuesday 6 April, and concluded on Friday, 9 April.
The event has become a highlight for professional South African golfers over the age of 50 and was funded and hosted by the Bitou Municipality for the fourth time this year. It was cancelled last year as a result of Covid-19.
Kingston, who won the 2019 tournament with a score of 280 and a nine-shot victory, was in good shape to do it again from the first day on the course. His round of five under 67 saw him take the lead in the opening round and he held on to this lead throughout the four-day tournament.
By the end of the third round Kingston was six shots ahead of second-placed Grant Muller.
While the third day's play started about an hour late due to foggy conditions and led to golfers, including Kingston, getting off to a slow start, Kingston managed to claw his way back with back-to-back birdies at holes 9 and 10.
A topsy-turvy round led to a double bogey on the 12th, but he turned it around with an eagle on the par 4 14th. This was the second time during the tournament that Kingston eagled the hole.
"From nowhere I made a terrible mistake with the double bogey on the 12th. It wasn't the best I struck the ball this week but I got a good feeling on the back nine," Kingston said after the third round.
That good feeling continued during the final day, which ended with a score of 69 for the round. This meant Kingston scored 67, 71, 68 and 69 with a total of 275 for all four rounds.
This put him five shots ahead of Chris Williams, who managed 280, 12 shots ahead of Muller, who took the final podium position with a score of 287. Over four days, 65 senior professionals attempted to give Kingston a run for his money. The first two days of the event were supported by a complement of 126 amateurs in a pro-am.
While spectators were not allowed, due to Covid-19 Level 1 restrictions, fans could still follow the action through the Sunshine Senior Tour Facebook page and through a post-event highlights clip on SuperSport.
The event was not only about golf - it is also supports the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) to boost their conservation efforts.
The tour provides a portion of the prize fund and also raises awareness for the local endangered species at each event.
The newly rebranded Sunshine Senior Tour is a result of a partnership with the SA Senior Tour and the Sunshine Tour. The tour structure aims to provide a competitive tournament schedule to, among others, grow senior professional golf in South Africa.