Albertse leads field of champions at Royal Johannesburg

golf02 May 2024 15:00
By:Michael Vlismas
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Louis Albertse © Tyrone Winfield/Sunshine Tour

Louis Albertse rose to the fore in a field of champions as he opened with a bogey-free seven-under-par 65 to lead the Sunshine Tour’s new Waterfall City Tournament of Champions powered by Attacq by two strokes at Royal Johannesburg’s East Course on Thursday.

As one of the select professionals in a 34-player field that has brought together champions from the Sunshine Tour, Sunshine Ladies Tour and the elite amateur ranks of GolfRSA, Albertse got off to the perfect start in the chase to the R1-million first-place cheque come Sunday.

The winner of last season’s KitKat Cash & Carry Pro-Am opened with a birdie on the first and added a further four birdies and an eagle to carry him to the top of the leaderboard.

With this also being the first tournament of the Sunshine Tour’s new 2024-25 season, Albertse has clearly picked up from where he left off.

He finished last season with four top-10s on his way to his best-ever finish of third on the Sunshine Tour Order of Merit delivered by The Courier Guy, which has also secured him a DP World Tour card for this season.

His nearest challengers are Zimbabwe’s Robson Chinhoi, Gerhard Pepler, amateur Ivan Verster and Scottish women’s professional Kylie Henry all on five under par.

Ryan van Velzen, the winner of last season’s Sunshine Tour Order of Merit delivered by The Courier Guy, came through the opening round five shots off the lead.

Top GolfRSA amateur Altin van der Merwe, the winner of the inaugural Africa Amateur Championship at Leopard Creek in February and who recently also won the Sunshine Tour’s Qualifying School Final Stage, opened with a round of level par 72.

And Robin Williams, the Sunshine Tour’s Fortress Rookie of the Year for last season, started his week with a round of one-over-par 73.


65 - Louis Albertse

67 - Robson Chinhoi, Gerhard Pepler, Ivan Verster, Kylie Henry

68 - Hennie Otto, Bjorn Akesson

69 - Jaco Ahlers, Deon Germishuys, Tvesa Malik

70 - Casandra Alexander, Nikhil Rama, Rupert Kaminski, Ryan Van Velzen

71 - Pieter Moolman, Martin Rohwer, Darren Fichardt, Neil Schietekat

72 - CJ du Plessis, Rhys Enoch, Heinrich Bruiners, Kyle Barker, Gabrielle Venter, Altin van der Merwe

73 - Peter Karmis, Luca Filippi, Robin Williams

74 - Jbe Kruger, Malcolm Mitchell, Jonathan Broomhead, Cara Gorlei

77 - Lejan Lewthwaite

80 - Leon Vorster

85 - Kesha Louw