Fourteen-year-old golf sensation, Emily Jones’s fairy-tale season continued after she won the Old Mutual Zimbabwe Ladies’ Golf Union Open Strokeplay at Royal Harare on Sunday.
By Munyaradzi Madzokere
The latest success completes a treble of open tournaments in Southern Africa for Jones, who has already bagged the Lesotho as well as the Zambia Open so far this year.
The reigning Zimbabwe junior champion was also impressive at the South Africa Open and the Gauteng Open, where she finished 24th and 11th respectively.
Jones carded rounds of 72, 81 and 75 in the three-day tournament to finish with a total of 228 and claim the title won by Claire Minter last year.
Former champion, Batsirai Tilowakuti bounced back after a slow start to shoot a brilliant level par 72 score to finish just two strokes behind Jones.
“It feels great winning the Zimbabwe Open, especially since I won with some good scores. I am happy considering this is my third open win this year. It was very difficult especially today (Sunday) because Tilowakuti was putting pressure on me and everyone in the chasing pack was playing well,” she said.
“The big tournaments are ending now, but there is the Harare Province Strokeplay coming up and I hope to do well. My target is to record some good under-par scores and set a few course records going forward,” she said.
Zambian golfer, Jahaanvie Walia settled for third after grossing 233 inspired by a hole-in-one on the last day.
Another talented junior, Danielle Bekker was tied for fourth alongside Ouname Mnotsha six shots behind the winner on 234.
Zimbabwe Ladies’ Golf Union president, Caroline Mtsambiwa was pleased by the tournament’s success.
“The tournament has been a success. The turnout was great, the sponsorship was wonderful. We are excited that we had players from Botswana, South Africa and Zambia. We are happy that our very own junior Emily Jones won the trophy. She has been improving with each tournament that she has participated this year,”she said.
About 90 golfers competed for the big prize, a significant rise from the 70, who entered the competition last year.