By Matthews Mfubu (Fullpage Media and Communications)
Samuel Simpson carded a final-round four-under-par 68 to claim a three-stroke wire-to-wire victory in the seventh tournament of the Altron Big Easy Tour held at Kyalami Country Club on Wednesday.
Simpson, along with Coert Groenewald, who was his closest challenger on day three, came into the final round with a one-shot lead as both players sought to claim respective maiden victories on this Sunshine Tour’s development circuit. Eventually, however, it was the 21-year-old Royal Cape Golf Club golfer who emerged victorious.
“I am so happy to get over the finally get over the line,” said a visibly elated Simpson. “I played really well this year and to finally go home with another win this year is really special. I’m over the moon.”
Simpson’s eventful round was characterised by seven birdies, an eagle, three bogeys and a double-drop on the same 11th hole where he’d made a triple-bogey seven on day two of this 54-hole tournament.
“I started par-bogey today and I was one behind for a couple of holes,” said Simpson, recalling the details of his final round. “Then I got to the turn and I made a double on 11, so I am five-over on that hole this week.
“But, to be honest, I played the par-fives really well. I was five-under on the par-fives today but I ended up shooting four-under. From previous experiences here, I just knew that there were birdies around the corner if I just stuck to my strategy which was to birdie all the par-fives and hit as many greens as possible. The course suits my eye off the tee and I knew that if I limit the mistakes, I will be under-par.”
Simpson is no stranger to the Kyalami Country Club track. While this may be his first win on any Sunshine Tour-sanctioned event, the GolfRSA development product has had a few other wins on another circuit, with his most recent win being a Bushveld Tour triumph on this same layout.
“As I said, this course suits my eye and I have developed a liking for it,” he added, “so, I was really comfortable this week. To win on this tour is not easy and this win means so much to me because of that. You have to work really hard to win here, so I am stoked that I finally got it done. I didn’t have the best year on the Sunshine Tour last season, so this win kind of confirms that I belong here too. I just need to work harder to reach my targets.”
Following a stellar amateur career, the Rondebosch resident will hope this win is the first of many professional wins.