13th April 2015 | IGT Challenge Tour
Mansfield marches to maiden win
Mansfield was one off the pace after an opening six-under-par 66 in the KZN Summer Swing Kloof event, but overnight leader Malcolm Mitchell derailed midway through the final round.
The 20-year-old amateur made the most of the opportunity and signed for a five under 67 to edge out Mark van Deventer for a one stroke victory on seven-under-par 133.
“This victory is really important to me,” the Durban Country Club player said.
“I’ve been playing the IGT Tour KZN for almost two years and this gets a big monkey off my back. My coach, Shaun Coetzee, and I work almost every day here at Kloof, but I never expected to get my first win here.
“Things didn’t really go to plan when I started with a three-putt bogey, but I managed to keep my focus and stayed patient and it paid off in the end. Winning on home soil is obviously a big step, but this season is all about preparing the Sunshine Tour Qualifying School, so this is a massive step for me going forward.”
Mansfield erased the bogey start with a birdie at the par-five fifth and turned one under after a four at the par-five seventh.
The big swing came at the par-four 10th where Mitchell hit out of bounds twice and signed for an eight.
“That gave a bunch of us the chance to challenge for victory,” Mansfield said.
“I played the first four holes in solid pars, but I thought I could pick up a birdie after a great tee shot at the 14th. I had 72 meters to the pin and I hit a lob-wedge in, but I never expected to hole out.
“First time in my life and it felt great but then I spoiled it with another three-putt bogey at the 15th.”
The young gun held a one shot lead going down the last after another textbook birdie at the par-five 17th and turn his advantage into victory with a solid par at the closing hole.
Fellow amateur Van Deventer signed for a 68 to finish second, three strokes clear from professional Calvin Coelho, who also registered a 68.
Mitchell was three ahead of Mansfield before the disastrous 10th. He dropped further shots at the 13th, 14th and 16th but stemmed the bleeding with a birdie at the 17th and closed with a 73 to finish on two under to take fourth on his own.
Just two weeks after Rahen Sewgolum matched the course record at Prince’s Grant with an impressive 64, the 52-year-old stole the show on his son, Nisharlan Sewlander, in his IGT Tour debut.
He carded rounds of 76 and 72 to tie for 12th on eight over 148, finishing eight strokes clear of the grandson of the celebrated Pawpa Sewgolum.
Meanwhile Kate Brett-Castle also made her debut on the IGT Tour KZN as its first female contestant,.
Brett-Castle carded successive rounds of 77 to finish 16th on 154.
“I think it could have been better,” said IGT Tour KZN commissioner, Melville Muir.
“Kate had eight pars and a bogey at the ninth in both rounds, but she obviously didn’t enjoy the back nine at Kloof. It was fantastic to have Kate compete and we hope she will inspire more ladies to come out and test themselves on the circuit.”
PHOTO – Clayton Mansfield; credit IGT Tour KZN