Evance takes top honours in Soweto
Evance Vukeya (above second from left) reaffirmed his membership of the Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation (EEFF) with a victory in the first Ernie Els Talent Search Golf Day at Soweto on Monday 2 July. The 17-year old Evance, who received an invitation to participate in the tournament, mastered the tricky greens the best of the 58 participants to card a brilliant one-under par 71 beating Keelan van Wyk (73) by two shots. Chandler Shaw (75) came third on a count out with Steven le Roux (75) fourth, and Mfundo Mdaba (76) in fifth place.
"There was a lot of pressure on me," said Evance, who is a member at Soweto CC and the EEFF's only member from this area. "I knew I had to perform. I knew I had to win this tournament to prove me being a member of the Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation. I beat a lot of good players today and I am very proud of my performance."
This was the first time that the EEFF has held a talent search tournament in the heart of Soweto. By doing this it ensured that all the local talent and players from the surrounding unions participated. "We are very happy with our first visit to Soweto," Hannes van Niekerk CEO of the EEFF said. "Our goal with this golf day was to look at the local talent, make it easy for them to participate, promote the game of golf and to motivate the youngsters to work hard at their game. I do believe we have achieved all of this and therefore we will definitely be back next year."
At the prize-giving the players were surprised with a voice message from Ernie Els from Londen, greeting them and expressing the hope that they had an enjoyable day. Ernie also thanked Mike Wyle, chairman of WBHO, who sponsored the player's shirts and caps. WBHO is also a partner of the EEFF.
Freddie Modise, president of the Soweto Country Club, also expressed his satisfaction with the golf day. "I am very happy and it would be great if we could establish a long term relationship with Ernie Els. It would be great if we could do this tournament twice a year. Many of the players already have asked me when the next tournament will be and that is a very good sign."
Pictured above from left to right: Tsoanelo Ntene (WBHO), Evance Vukeya (Winner), Peter Taylor (WHBO) and Zandile Mkize (Soweto CC).