DROGHEDA, Ireland (3 June 2019) – Martin Vorster made it two in a row for the GolfRSA National Squad when he coasted to a four-shot triumph in the East of Ireland Amateur Open Championship on Monday.
The Mossel Bay junior became the second successive South African teenager – and only the second foreign champion – in the 78-year history of the high-ranking event when he followed fellow Southern Cape golfer Christo Lamprecht into the winner’s circle at County Louth Golf Club.
At the age of 17 years, four months and 12 days, Vorster was just seven days older than his Louis Oosthuizen Junior Golf Academy stable-mate Lamprecht, who last year bagged the first trophy on the GolfRSA National Squad UK Tour, funded by business man Johann Rupert.
“Last year Christo won in Ireland, Wilco (Nienaber) won The Amateur qualifier and Jovan (Rebula) won The Amateur, so hopefully this is a good omen for the GolfRSA National Squad,” said the delighted Vorster.
Starting Monday’s 36-hole final four off the pace, Vorster showed some exceptional skills in the blustery southwest wind that gusted up to 50 km per hour across the Baltray Links.
He surged into a one-shot lead with a flawless five-under-par 67 in the morning, and had only one blemish on his card as he closed out victory on nine-under-par 279 with another superb 67.
Paul Hanlon from Carton House was within a shot after 54 holes, but the 2016 champion lost touch with the South African over the last nine holes. He took second on 283.
“This is amazing; I am so, so happy,” said Vorster.
“I won the Junior Open at St Andrews after a couple of close calls, and this year, I’ve come close again, but to win my first senior event here in Ireland is indescribable. The pressure was intense, and I’m so proud of the way I managed my game, especially in the last two rounds.
“My only goal was to try to keep the ball in play to give myself scoring opportunities, and it was tough to do in a three- to four-club wind. But I stuck to my strategy and it paid off.”
Vorster credited his bagman – fellow GolfRSA National Squad member Christiaan Burke – for keeping him patient.