9th January 2015 | Big Easy IGT Golf

Ford finds his mojo at Wanderers

Wandrs7-9JanDay3 (126)(PHOTO – Adrian Ford; credit CJ du Plooy)

JOHANNESBURG, 9 January 2015 – Western Province professional Adrian Ford was thrilled to kick off the 2015 season with a play-off victory over multiple IGT Tour champion Ockie Strydom at the Wanderers Golf Club on Friday.

The 27-year-old Durbanville pro was just hoping to keep the rust off and stay competitive this week, but the unexpected victory in the IGT Tour’s first Q-School Prep tournament left Ford brimming with confidence for the summer ahead.

“I didn’t expect to win when I entered, but once I got into contention, the competitive juices really started to flow,” said Ford, who closed with a four under 68 to tie GFG Academy’s Strydom at 11-under-par 202.

Ford notched four birdies on his way to the clubhouse, while Strydom reeled in an eagle and three birdies for a 66 to haul himself into extra time.

The pair set off down the par-five 10th and both players split the fairway with their drives.

Ford a three-iron in and finished pin-high left of the green, while Strydom’s five-iron approach splashed into the greenside bunker.

A chip to 15 feet and tap-in for birdie secured the victory for Ford.

The former number one amateur was tipped for greatness after he won the Freddie Tait Cup as the leading amateur in the 2008 South African Open Championship.

But Ford struggled with the transition to the pro ranks and has never lived up to his early promise. The burly golfer hopes to turn his fortunes around this season.

“There is no reason to sugar-coat it,” he said. “I’ve had a torrid couple of years. I didn’t have the dedication or discipline required and I paid the price.

“But I am playing with a lot more focus now. If you want it in a word, I’d say I’ve re-dedicated myself. I want to succeed in this sport, so I’ve had to make a lot of adjustments to my mental game, my fitness and my commitment.

“I feel I’m heading in the right direction and this week confirms for me that I’m on the right track.”

Amateurs Christiaan van der Merwe and Kevin Rundle from KwaZulu-Natal and reigning club champion Shaun Stapleton, who all shared the first round lead, tied for third on 204.

Van der Merwe carded a 69, Rundle registered a 70 and Stapleton, who took a three shot lead into the final round, closed with a 73.

FINAL RESULT

202 – Adrian Ford 69 65 68 *Play-off win

202 – Ockert Strydom 67 69 66

204 – Christiaan Van Der Merwe (AMA) 67 68 69, Kevin Rundle (AMA) 67 67 70, Shaun Stapleton (AMA) 67 64 73

206 – Jaco Prinsloo 69 68 69, Werner Van Niekerk 68 68 70

207 – Tyrone Ryan 68 71 68

208 – Duane Keun 67 69 72

209 – Brett Liddle 72 64 73

210 – Ryan Clarke 71 72 67, Calvin Caldeira 70 71 69, Toby Tree ENG 67 73 70

212 – Haydn Porteous 72 71 69, Martin Dewhurst ENG 70 69 73

213 – Rourke Van der Spuy 71 72 70, Matthew Kent 70 69 74

214 – Lean Boezaart 73 70 71, NJ Arnoldi (AMA) 74 70 70, Ruan Huysamen NAM 75 67 72

215 – Andre De Decker (AMA) 74 69 72, Martin Rohwer (AMA) 74 70 71, Johann Germishuys (AMA) 73 69 73, Stuart Smith BOT 72 70 73

216 – Pieter Kruger 73 70 73, Justin Turner 71 72 73, Jason Diab (AMA) 71 71 74

217 – Johan de Beer 72 70 75

218 – Tyron Mc Comb 68 74 76, Arno Bartholoma GER 71 74 73, Dylan Docherty (AMA) 71 74 73, Pierre Du Preez (AMA) 71 70 77

220 – Joubert Van Eeden (AMA) 69 74 77, Jason Froneman (AMA) 78 67 75, Christof Appel 72 75 73, Otto van Greunen 75 73 72, Marco Scarola 76 72 72, Siphiwe Siphayi (AMA) 78 72 70

221 – Neal Herman (AMA) 74 72 75, Herman Minnie 74 75 72

222 – Shaun van Tonder 72 72 78

224 – Mike Downes ENG 74 74 76, Christiaan Pretorius 78 72 74

225 – James McCormick ENG 74 71 80, Hanbo Lee 68 80 77, Andrew Carlsson (AMA) 72 78 75

227 – Louis Taylor (AMA) 73 73 81, Greg Bentley ZIM 75 75 77

229 – Rikus Oosthuizen (AMA) 77 72 80

232 – Bryce Myburgh 78 72 82

WDN – Yngve Nilsson SWE 78 72 WDN

N/R – Terence Boardman 72 78 N/R

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