Unflinching Fabricius retains SKZN Closed silverware

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Quintin van Jaarsveld

A laser-focused Graham Fabricius made it back-to-back Southern KwaZulu-Natal Closed titles in wet and windy conditions at San Lameer Country Club on Sunday.

The Port Shepstone Country Club ace could hardly have started the year better than he did the 2016 season, yet he did just that as he trumped his maiden Southern KwaZulu-Natal Closed triumph on his home course 12 months ago.

This year’s competition was an 18-hole medal stableford affair, in which golfers had their work cut out for them in the trying conditions.

Shelly Beach-based Fabricius displayed good all-round skills to retain the silverware on 36 points ahead of runner-up Jan Roos (35) and third-placed Jason Gilliver (31).

Another ace for Sheppie’s Fabricius

“It feels great. I had one thought in mind and that was winning,” the 23-year-old told eHowzit.

“This win feels so much better and satisfying than last year’s win because it was played on a much tougher course and in some testing conditions.

“I feel quite proud because I had a good game plan from the start and I stuck to it. I knew if I did that, I’d be able to win because my game has been very consistent the last couple of weeks and I’ve put in countless hours of practice.”

Fabricius felt he didn’t put unnecessary pressure on himself and soaked it up when the heat was on. Prime examples of his composure were on the par-four 7th, where he made a 12ft putt for par, and on the par-five 8th, where he pulled off a tricky chip to set-up a tap-in birdie to go one-under-par.

“I knew I was playing solidly in the conditions and if I could finish off my round at level par, I did my part. I stayed patient when I hit some bad shots and managed to go up-and-down when I could easily have dropped a couple of shots which would’ve put me out of the tournament, so I took a big mental step forward in coping with pressure and keeping it together to finish it off.”

With a win under his belt, Fabricius has set himself up nicely for what he hopes will be a career-elevating year.

“My main goal this year is improving my consistency and mental focus in the tournaments I play and to play as many as I can to set me up at having a chance of going to qualifying school and get my card.”

SKZN Closed at San Lameer:

1 Graham Fabricius 36 pts
2 Jan Roos 35
3 Jason Gilliver 31
4 Matthew Sutherland 30
T5 Robert Mavundla 29
T5 Gary Purtell 29
T7 Elvis Khawula 28
T7 Ronnie Mtshaka 28
9 Warren van Heerden 27
T10 Douglas Sima 25
T10 Darren Ovenstone 25
T10 Wonderboy Nxumalo 25
T10 Sbu Ntozakhe 25
T10 Derick Zolyomi 25
15 Vusi Maphumulo 24
T16 Dean Goldhill 22
T16 Mikhail van Brakel 22
T18 Errol Rudman 20
T18 Warren Keightley 20
T18 Andrew Sharp 20
21 Keagan Burton 19
T22 Grant Richards 17
T22 Gareth Parsons 17
24 Mot Moleele 12

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