Ashleigh Storms to SA Open Win

Ashleigh Simon has once again broken records in her win of the Acer Women's South African Open in Durban on Saturday. Picture: Ladies African TourAmateur Ashleigh Simon made South African golf history by winning the Acer Women’s South African Open for the second time in her career, becoming the first amateur to ever achieve this and the youngest at the age of 17.

Simon closed with a 72 at Durban Country Club on Saturday to win by five shots on 14 under par 205 against an international field including players who competed in the recent Women’s World Cup of Golf.

Simon made history in 2004 when, at the age of 14, she became the first and youngest amateur to win the Women’s SA Open.

Doing so a second time places her in an even more exclusive club of achievement, the likes of which may never be done again.

“Probably not for a very long time, at least,” Simon confirmed.

“I haven’t taken it all in yet. At the moment it’s just another win on the Ladies African Tour for me and I’m very happy about that. Ever since I won the SA Open in 2004 it’s been my goal to do so again.”

Simon’s latest achievement is just one of many records the teenage sensation has amassed over the years, and she admits she sometimes doesn’t take the time to let them sink in.

“It’s only now, three years later, when I look back and think that I won it the first time at the age of 14. Then I look around at what other 14 year olds have achieved and I am quite proud of myself for that.”

Even Simon’s father, Mike, so used to seeing his daughter shatter records on the fairways, admitted to being astounded by her latest achievement.

“Sometimes I think she can’t keep on going breaking records, but she does. She is a very special girl.”

With Simon enjoying a seven-shot lead at the start of the final round, the battle was always on for second place.

Stacy Bregman took that honour with a 69 for a total of 210. Laurette Maritz finished third on 211 with a closing 68, and amateur Kelli Shean was fourth on 213 with a final round of 70.

Simon, Bregman and Shean made up the three-women team that won the prestigious Espirito Santo Trophy for South Africa for the first time at the World Amateur Team Championships late last year.

Bregman has since turned professional, but Simon says she has no plans to follow suit just yet.

“It is difficult when I see Stacy up there in the professional arena, and the temptation is there to turn professional. I’m definitely not going to study. I will eventually turn professional, but it’s just a case of waiting for the right moment.

“I’ve always wanted to have a good amateur career and I want to end it off in the right way.”

Her next goal will be the defence of her South African Amateur title. Simon won the double – the stroke play and match play titles – last year. Doing so again in a few weeks time will be another first for South African golf.

“It’ll be the first time anyone has done that, so it’s a big goal of mine.”


Acer Women’s SA Open
Durban Country Club, Final Round Scores (Par 73)

205 Ashleigh Simon* 69 64 72
210 Stacy Bregman 72 69 69
211 Laurette Maritz 73 70 68
213 Kelli Shean* 72 71 70
215 Rebecca Hudson (Eng) 71 69 75
216 Sophie Walker (Eng) 74 70 72, Morgana Robbertze 68 75 73, Tania Elosegui (Spa) 69 76 71
217 Antonella Cvitan (Swe) 70 75 72
218 Johanna Westerberg (Swe) 74 74 70, Marianne Skarpnord (Nor) 76 71 71, Eleanor Pilgrim (Wal) 76 68 74, Nora Angehrn (Swi) 75 70 73
219 Ana Larraneta (Spa) 74 74 71
220 Lena Tornevall (Swe) 75 70 75, Margherita Rigon (Ita) 73 71 76, Amanda Moltke-Leth (Den) 72 76 72, Lisa Jean (Aus) 73 71 76
221 Julie Tvede (Den) 74 75 72, Clare Queen (Sco) 73 71 77, Karen Margrethe Juul (Den) 74 72 75, Anna Becker (Swe) 76 71 74
222 Sarah Heath (Eng) 74 74 74, Mette Buus (Den) 77 71 74
223 Vicki Traut* 76 74 73, Frederique Seeholzer (Swi) 73 76 74, Lee-Anne Pace 74 73 76, Elin Ohlsson (Swe) 74 71 78, Kirsty Fisher (Eng) 75 72 76
224 Hanna-Sophia Svenningsson (Swe) 71 76 77, Monique Smit* 75 74 75, Lisa Holm Sorensen (Den) 75 73 76
225 Felicity Johnson (Eng) 75 76 74, Jo Clingan (Eng) 75 73 77, Mandy Adamson 72 77 76
226 Bertine Strauss* 73 75 78, Hanna-Leena Salonen (Fin) 75 78 73, Leandri Pieterse 77 74 75, Julie Berton (Fra) 79 69 78
227 Maria Boden (Swe) 72 75 80
228 Ellen Smets (Bel) 78 73 77
229 Michelle de Vries 72 76 81
230 Natou Soro (Cdi) 80 74 76, Edita Nechanicka (Cze) 76 77 77, Jehanne Jail (Fra) 76 72 82, Nina Hansson (Swe) 79 76 75, Sarah Faller* (Ire) 79 73 78, Claire Coughlan (Ire) 76 76 78
231 Lill Kristin Saether (Nor) 75 78 78, Santie Koch 74 81 76, Elin Brask (Swe) 75 80 76
232 Emma Zackrisson (Swe) 76 77 79, Monja Richards 75 74 83, Cecilie Lundgreen (Nor) 72 79 81, Lise Botha 81 73 78
233 Gina Switala* 76 75 82, Viva Schlasberg (Swe) 79 76 78
234 Florence Luscher (Swi) 75 80 79, Caryn Louw 78 77 79
235 Carmen Alonso (Spa) 81 74 80
236 Tandi von Ruben* 73 79 84, Taynee Pearson* 76 79 81, Nuria Clau (Spa) 78 75 83
237 Frederique Dorbes (Fra) 78 77 82, Vanessa Bell (Eng) 78 77 82

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