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