And for my Lat­est Trick . . .

Michael Scholz wins PGA ti­tle at first at­tempt.

Golf Digest (South Africa) - - The Golf Life Passings -

He’s known as a flam­boy­ant trick shot artist (right), with an amaz­ing comedic reper­toire of quirky stuff, but Michael Scholz showed that he can also play great con­ven­tional golf when he won the PGA Na­tional Cham­pi­onship pre­sented by Din­ers Club.

The vet­eran pro and oc­ca­sional Sun­shine Tour player claimed the De­nis Hutchin­son Tro­phy for the first time af­ter hav­ing three sub-par rounds at Stel­len­bosch Golf Club in the Cape Winelands. “To have my name on this tro­phy is an honour,” said Scholz.“A few years ago De­nis gave me a tip about putting in which he said just swing the club, and it’s made such a dif­fer­ence to my putting. I ea­gled the par-5 12th hole in all three rounds – that is re­ally un­usual.”

The PGA Tour had a trick-shot golfer, Wes­ley Bryan, win the RBC Her­itage in April. He and his brother started a YouTube chan­nel fea­tur­ing their videos.

Scholz, 46, was play­ing in the PGA’s sig­na­ture tour­na­ment for the first time, hav­ing only qual­i­fied last year as a PGA of SA pro­fes­sional un­der the men­tor­ship of Dave Usendorff, while he was gen­eral man­ager at The Els Club Cop­per­leaf. Scholz and Usendorff were fa­mil­iar faces on lo­cal TV on the Su­perGolf pro­gramme (now can­celled), host­ing the hu­mor­ous Dave & Mike Golf 101 seg­ment about the rules. He markets him­self as the 40-year-old rookie, and has a web­site by that name. He’s a big hit at cor­po­rate golf days with his zany per­for­mances, do­ing about 100 of them a year. “Trick shots are the rage onYouTube, but in my job I can­not af­ford to fail per­form­ing a trick in front of a live au­di­ence,” he says.“If you’re do­ing some­thing for YouTube, you can do as many takes as you like to get it right.”

At Stel­len­bosch, Scholz also got it right when it mat­tered, hav­ing a 10-un­der-par to­tal of 206 (67-70-69) for a one-shot vic­tory over Pre­to­ria pro­fes­sional Pi­eter Kruger and Rob Wiederkehr, orig­i­nally from Cape Town, who has been teach­ing

in Switzer­land for sev­eral years. Both shot 71 in the last round af­ter shar­ing the 36-hole lead with Clin­ton Grob­ler (Ruim­sig), who fin­ished fourth on 209. Wil­liam Guy (Som­er­set West) was fifth on 210.

PGA Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Ivano Fi­calbi was thrilled with the new cham­pion.

“Michael’s out­go­ing per­son­al­ity and love for the game is a good fit for the PGA,” said Fi­calbi.“Even though he’s not your typ­i­cal as­so­ci­ated club pro­fes­sional, a PGA pro­fes­sional is some­body who works in the golf in­dus­try.That’s what Michael is. He’s an en­ter­tainer and he plays golf to have fun and he rep­re­sents our brand in an un­be­liev­able way be­cause he wants more peo­ple play­ing the game.”

The win­ning In­land team. From left, Michael Balder­stone, Rudy Whit­field, John Dick­son, Craig Stick­ling, Pierre Van Vu­uren, Paul Marks, Hans Jonck, Jannes Sik, Michael Scholz, Martin Briede, David Rid­dle, Di­et­rich Uys.

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