NA­TIONAL TREA­SURE

Christo Lam­precht never trailed in a sin­gle match at Hume­wood in be­com­ing the youngest SA Am­a­teur cham­pion.

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - Amateur Scene - By Barry Havenga

Bri­tish play­ers had won six of the last 11 San­lam SA Am­a­teurs, but Christo Lam­precht (right), a lanky 16-year-old from George, stepped up with a fear­less attitude and an exquisite short game to win the tro­phy against a strong in­ter­na­tional con­tin­gent at Hume­wood.

Lam­precht, the coun­try’s top-ranked ju­nior, pre­pared for the cham­pi­onship by prac­tis­ing in windy con­di­tions at Pin­na­cle Point, his home club in Mos­sel Bay, where he be­longs to the Louis Oosthuizen Ju­nior Academy.A Grade 10 learner at Outeni­qua High School in George, tall at 6-3, Lam­precht lives with his fam­ily on the Kingswood Es­tate where he also plays and prac­tices.

“My goal for 2017 was to make the cut in all the events I was able to play in, and get past the first round of the SA Am­a­teur, as I had lost in the open­ing round last year at George,” said Lam­precht, who turned 16 on Jan­uary 30.“As the week pro­gressed in Port El­iz­a­beth the wind got stronger, which was an ad­van­tage for me. I prac­tised spe­cific shots for the wind and was in great form with the put­ter.”

He qual­i­fied 26th af­ter scores of 71-68, and won five matches to reach the fi­nal, beat­ing Swiss in­ter­na­tional Loris Schuep­bach (a semi­fi­nal­ist at George last year), fel­low South­ern Cape player and SA in­ter­na­tional An­dre Nel, top ju­nior Garrick Higgo (De Zalze), In­dia’s Yashab Chan­dra, and then Wood­hill’s Dy­lan Kok in an east­erly gale.

Lam­precht’s op­po­nent in the 36-hole fi­nal was an­other South­ern Cape golfer, 19-year-old Cay­lum Boon (Oubaai), who had beaten An­dre van Heer­den (Walker Park) in his semi­fi­nal. Boon had won his first provincial ti­tle at Hume­wood three months ear­lier in the Eastern Prov­ince Stroke­play, and there was a friendly vibe be­tween them. Lam­precht never trailed dur­ing any of his matches, and he was four up on Boon at lunch, go­ing on to win 7/6.

Shortly af­ter the prize­giv­ing in front of Hume­wood’s grand club­house, Lam­precht re­ceived a con­grat­u­la­tory call from Oosthuizen, who had wo­ken to the news of his pro­tege’s tri­umph be­fore his sec­ond round of the Honda Clas­sic in Florida.

“I’m grate­ful for Louis’ as­sis­tance in my ca­reer so far, and hope he is proud of me,” said an elated Lam­precht.

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