National team players Tariro November and Royal Harare Golf Club’s Yollander Mubaiwa were crowned the winners of the men’s and ladies’ titles, respectively, in the inaugural edition of the Munhumutapa Strokeplay Golf Championship at Police Golf Club on Sunday.
The Munhumutapa Golf Championship was the second event on the Zimbabwe Golf Association (ZGA) calendar to feature a mixed field for both top male and female amateur golfers with World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR) points on offer in both fields.
November emerged victorious in the men’s category after carding rounds of 79, 74 and 76 for a 54-hole gross total of 229.
The victory was sweet consolation for the Chapman Golf Club player after he found the going tough during his recent tour of South Africa.
“My victory over the weekend was amazing because it really showed me that failure is one step closer to success following my previous tournaments results in South Africa,” November said.
“I live by this quote from Nelson Mandela which says don’t be found playing small settling for a life that’s less the one you’re capable of living so this quote really helps me keep pushing myself towards achieving my set goals.
“After shooting 79 and 74 on Saturday I thought I was out of the winning position, but I just told myself not to give up but just focus only to find out that I was tied 1st going into the last round. On Sunday I just zoned, and made sure that I keep or handle pressure better which I managed to do and led me to win the event. The victory over the weekend was satisfying, however, the scores were not so pleasing which means I really have to work hard on my game also it’s a confidence boost which makes one a great or better athlete,” he said.
The former Heritage School pupil finished two shots clear of the Wingate Park Golf Club duo of Shepherd Chiwaya and Munashe Ndaruza.
Mutare-based junior golfer Braydon Amm, who is the young brother of US-based top amateur golfer David Amm, settled for third position after recovering from an opening 82 to card 74 and 78 on the final day for a gross of 232.
In the lady’s competition, seasoned national team player Mubaiwa showed her experience to outlast the field to win the women’s title.
Mubaiwa carded scores of 84, 79 and 79 and her 54-hole total of 242 was a shot better than Kudzi Mandava (82, 79 and 82), who is also a member at Royal Harare Golf Club.
“It was such an honour to play in a mixed field with men, that definitely made it more competitive,” Mubaiwa said.
“It brought something different to the game of golf. We now have something to play for: the World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR). I didn’t play well over the weekend because I was slowly giving up on golf… So since the level of competition has increased I will definitely be practising more so can up my game in order to earn the WAGR points.
“I would want to thank Police Golf Club for the courtesy of the course. They did their best, secondly the sponsors and organisers of the Munhumutapa tournament for a job well done. I would also like to give a special thanks to the Zimbabwe Ladies Golf Union president Mrs Vera for the support and all her efforts to ensure we get this exposure,” she added.
Tracy Humbira, who won the season-opening Dugmore and Fellowship Golf Championship’s ladies’ competition in Bulawayo exactly a month ago, settled for third position on a total of 246.
A total of 57 players took part in the Championship with 14 making up the field of the ladies’ competition.