Grant takes second title in South Africa, Rudgeley beats the pros and an Austrian win for the first time on the PGA Tour

Sweden’s Linn Grant won the Jabra Ladies Classic at Glendower Golf Club on Friday as she carded a seven-under-par 65 to secure a two-stroke victory over last week’s winner Paula Reto. This was Grant’s second win of the season, after she celebrated a maiden pro win in the Dimension Data Ladies Challenge at Fancourt a fortnight ago.

In the end, it was a bit of a race against time as the leaders cranked up the pace of play – as well as the quality – to beat in incoming highveld thunder storm. It took a buggy ride to their tees shots to play their approaches as quickly as possible.

“We rushed on the 18th because we knew there was a storm coming in and we had been told we had 15 minutes or half an hour to make it in,” said Grant. “That was a little stressful.”

It appears that Grant’s decision to play the Sunshine Tour events before the Ladies European Tour comes to South Africa has been a good one, she said:

“It’s been good, and I’ve seen that my game is headed in the right direction. One thing I’ve learned, especially from today, is that regardless of where you play, the competition against yourself kind of gets into your head a little bit and dealing with that well helps a lot.”

The Swede is taking a week off to explore the attractions in Cape Town before she returns to Fancourt to prepare for the two upcoming tournaments co-sanctioned with the Ladies European Tour – the €250,000 Joburg Ladies Open at Modderfontein Golf Club from March 24-26, and the season-finale Investec South African Women’s Open in Cape Town. This year’s 72-hole event carries a purse of €290,000 and will be hosted by Steenberg Golf Club from March 30 – April 2.

The Athena – WPGA Tour

Amateur star Kirsten Rudgeley has beaten professionals for the first time in her career in a commanding victory in The Athena at Sandy Golf Links.

Rudgeley, 20, defeated Grace Kim in a thrilling five putt putt-off to hoist the trophy in front of a strong crowd.

Tournament format:

Saturday, February 26 (Golf Challenge Day) - players will each have one shot at nine different challenges, with points awarded to decide the eight who will progress to day two. The challenges are designed to test the players’ accuracy, power, scrambling and putting and to show that they have the ability to perform these clutch shots under the most intense pressure.

Sunday - Following the Golf Challenge Day, the leading eight players will progress to the adidas Playoffs, where they will face-off in seeded matches over three holes with a ‘Putt Off’ to decide any ties.

The field:

Cassie Porter (QLD)
Grace Kim (NSW)
Grace Lennon (VIC)
Hanee Song (NZ)
Jade Shellback (VIC)
Julienne Soo (VIC)
Karis Davidson (QLD)
Kelsey Bennett (NSW) (a)
Kirsten Rudgeley (WA) (a)
Molly McLean (VIC) (a)
Sarah Wilson (QLD) (a)
Stephanie Bunque (VIC)

Rudgeley was able to accept the prize money, under the new R&A rulings on prize money for amateurs, and will out it towards travel when she heads to the Augusta National Women’s Amateur at the end of March.

First win for Austria

Sepp Straka has become the first Austrian to win on the PGA Tour after a one-shot victory  at the Honda Classic.

The 28-year-old was five shots back at the start of the day and shot a final round 66, to beat Shane Lowry. Daniel Berger, who had held a five shot lead, shot a disappointing 74 to finish in fourth behind Kurt Kiyatama.

Straka told Sky Sports:

"I did [believe it was possible]. I had a good feeling, my brother text me right before the round and he said that he had a good feeling about this one.

"So, we both had a good feelings and I just knew that I needed to keep my head down and keep going."

The victory means that Straka, who played his college golf in Georgia, will play at The Masters in April.

Aces from Jimenez

Miguel Angel Jimenez had two holes-in-one on his way to his 12th Champions Tour victory On Sunday at the Cologuard Classic. The first came on Friday and the second during his final round on the 14th hole.

Always love a Jimenez celebration!

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