Golf | 3 SA golfers earn 2020 Asian Tour cards

Cape Town – South African golfers Jaco Ahlers, Neil Schietekat and Ian Snyman have earned their 2020 Asian Tour cards at the Final Stage of the Tour’s Qualifying School on Sunday.

The trio were among the 35 graduates, who successfully secured their Asian Tour cards after finishing inside the Top 35 and ties.

Zimbabwe ‘s Benjamin Follett-Smith finished top of his class with a one-shot victory at the Lake View Resort and Golf Club in Thailand.

Ahlers and Schietekat finished tied for fifth at 11-under par – four shots behind Follett-Smith.

For Ahlers, this will be his second season playing on the Asian Tour.

“It’s nice to have another tour to play on, I enjoyed it when I played in Asia in the 2010s,” said Ahlers after his final round.

“I feel like I could play well around here, I don’t mind the heat so I’m pretty happy.”

Meanwhile, Schietekat stated earlier in the week that he’d like to replicate fellow countryman Justin Harding’s success in Asia.

“I have played a little bit on the Asian Tour last season on a couple invites. It was nice and I kind of got used to the grass so it’s not that unfamiliar to me,” said Schietekat, who is a three-time Sunshine Tour winner.

“Justin Harding did really well on the Asian Tour in 2018. He used to play with us back home on the Sunshine Tour and he just couldn’t break through and then you know he had his big breakthrough here. It’s good to see him playing well. He’s a nice guy and he’s a good player. There are so many good players coming from South Africa.”

Snyman is relatively unknown in SA golf as he studied and played professional golf for the University of North Texas.

The Cape Town-born golfer qualified with a 7-under par total to finish tied for 23rd.

This week is the Asian Tour’s New Zealand Open at Millbrook Resort in Arrowtown.

– Compiled by Lynn Butler

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