Cape Town, 17 May 2007: Mick Horsley, one of Britain’s top disabled golfers won the Nedbank SA Disabled Golf Open at Erinvale with a final gross score of 237.
This is the fourth disabled open that Horsley has won, competing around the world. “This is my third Nedbank SA Disabled Golf Open and it is probably the best disabled event in the world.
“After shooting a 74 in my first round, I had a couple of people chasing me over the last two days, with three South Africans, Robin Singh (49), Iglin Grobbelaar (20) and Daniel Slabbert (15) close on my tail for most of the tournament.”Iglin Grobbelaar who plays off a 5 handicap finished second with a final gross score of 241. Durban golfer Robin Singh won the B division scoring 243. Steyn Humphries (45) won the wheelchair division, scoring 59 points in a Stableford format. (Picture: Mick Horsley – winner of the Nedbank SA Disabled Golf Open.)Port Elizabeth disabled golfer John Marriner was able to participate in the Nedbank SA Disabled Golf Open for the first time thanks to the donation of South Africa’s first vertical motorised wheelchair, recently donated by Retief Goosen. Marriner only had use of the wheelchair for a few weeks, and finished the first two rounds, but was unable to complete the last round due to rainy Cape weather.Othwill Minto was the only wheelchair golfer in the training camp of the First Swing Clinic this year. For the first time two youngsters from the First Swing Clinics, the development programme of the South African Disabled Golf Association (SADGA), participated in the senior tournament. Olwethu Tiyabilika (16), a leg amputee from East London and Mandisi Sikweyisa, a Les Autres sufferer from Port Elizabeth, loved the tournament. “It was really difficult to play on a golf course as we don’t usually get the opportunity”, said Tiyabilika.(Picture: John Bailey and Peter Zingela with Othwill Minto in the wheelchair donated by Retief Goosen.)
For many of the twelve First Swing Clinic youngsters participating in the training camp, it was the first time they had ever been in an aeroplane and the first time that many had seen the sea.According to SADGA Executive Director Eugene Vorster, the First Swing Clinics, also sponsored by Nedbank, have displayed amazing results, exposing young people with disabilities to the world and therapy of golf, but also in helping children with severe disabilities look beyond their perceived limitations.“120 children currently participate in the First Swing Clinics countrywide and we were thrilled to have 12 keen young golfers to take part in the training Clinics”, he said.
Tiyabilika (15) played in the D Division and scored 49 points in the Stableford format, finishing 17th. This year’s Nedbank SA Disabled Golf Open was his first ever participation in a tournament. “I absolutely love golf, it is my passion, in fact I sometimes try to get out of school to play golf”, said a mischievous Tiyabilika at the Erinvale course in Cape Town. (Picture: First Swing Clinic children at Erinvale.)According to SADGA Executive Director, Eugene Vorster, Tiyabilika learnt to hit the ball very well through the First Swing Clinics, the development activity of SADGA. “Olwethu hits the ball extremely well, but unfortunately seldom plays on a golf course”, said Vorster. “By playing on a golf course he will learn course management, as he has all the strokes.” Vorster added that Tiyabilika usually plays golf on a field and this week has played in a major tournament on a world class course.