Polokwane

Polokwane - Limpopo

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Acting manager: Wynand Pretorius
Greenkeeper: Peter Bhengu
President: Aaron Segwapa
Club pro: Mike Baylis

Course Summary

Three tees / Par 72

Yellow 6457 metres, CR73.3/135
White 6160 metres, CR72.1/132
Red 5448 metres, CR67.9/121
Women’s white, CR79.3/153
Women’s red, CR74.4/144

Visitor Green Fee

R400 Monday to Saturday
R200 Sunday

Course designer

Gary Player 1970s;
Peter Matkovich 1992

Contact

015 295 4118
www.polokwanegolfclub.co.za

Polokwane’s main claim to fame is being the home club of Retief Goosen while the two-time US Open champion was growing up in the capital city of Limpopo. The golf club has always been proud of its famous son, and a cut-out of Goosen with the Open trophy is displayed above the welcome sign at the entrance.

The Goosen family lived just 800 metres from the golf club, on the outskirts of Polokwane, and a teenage Goosen would cycle there after school during the 1980s and only return home when it got dark. He won the club champs as a junior. It was on the course at the age of 17 that he was struck by lightning.

Polokwane GC occupies an attractive bushveld site, flat, yet enjoyable and challenging to play. The original layout was upgraded by Peter Matkovich in 1992. The club hosted a Sunshine Tour event for nine consecutive years (1998-2006), although Goosen never played in any, having already graduated to the PGA Tour in America.

Bradford Vaughan won the last three tournaments with a combined total of 52-under-par. Other multiple winners were Hennie Otto and Marc Cayeux. The lowest pro scores were 62s by Desvonde Botes (1998) and Tjaart van der Walt (2005).

The well-balanced layout has an unusually high number of dogleg holes. The fairways are generously wide, and bent grass greens make for excellent putting surfaces. There’s a strong finish to the round.

Additional Course Facts

Course Record

61 by Matthew Carvell in 2006 Limpopo Open

Club Champions

2021 Jannie Bronkhorst & Desi Earle
2020 Jannie Bronkhorst & Desi Earle
2019 Jannie Bronkhorst & Desi Earle
Bronkhorst has won the title 8 times.

SA AMATEUR CHAMPIONS

Club members Retief Goosen and Louis de Jager both won the SA Amateur and claimed victories on the Sunshine Tour. Goosen won the SA Amateur at Port Elizabeth Golf Club in 1990, and De Jager also triumphed in PE, at Humewood in 2007 when he also won the Proudfoot Trophy and SA Strokeplay. De Jager won the Polokwane club championship in three consecutive years from 2004 to 2006, aged 15 to 17, something which eluded Goosen. And the De Jager family home in Polokwane was opposite that of Goosen’s parents.

Practice Facility

300-metre range, short-game area.

Did You Know

1/ The pro shop is owned by club member Desiree Earle, who has won the women’s club championship 25 times and represented Limpopo. Her father Ray Earle, a legendary figure in Limpopo golf, had the shop before her and is now retired in Tzaneen.

2/ Matthew Carvell, who became a Sunshine Tour pro, shot 61 in the final round of the 2006 Limpopo Open. He had a remarkable total of 25-under 263 to win by 10 shots, having had 32 birdies in that winter tournament.

3/ The club’s signature event is the annual 3-day Baobab Classic in March each year.

4/ Polokwane hosted the 2015 SA Boys Championships, won by Dylan Naidoo (strokeplay) and Ross Sinclair (matchplay).

5/ Long-time Polokwane member Malebana Pataki, originally a caddie in the 1980s, has represented Limpopo at 28 Interprovincial tournaments, from Premier to Seniors.

Course and Facilities Rating
Conditioning Ratings
Greens
Bunkers
Tees
Fairways
Presentation
Overall Conditioning
Facility Ratings
Pace of Play
Practice Facility
Halfway House
Pro Shop
Service
Locker Room
19th Hole
Course Etiquette
Course Reviews
The home course of Retief Goosen was a breath of fresh air. Relatively short in comparison to other Limpopo courses, but the test of the bushveld layout is immediately clear. The par 4s often include a significant dogleg or forced carry over streams that crisscross the course. The design variety is enjoyable with a good flow between the holes, particularly on the front nine. Back-to-back long par 4s on the front nine are an interesting change from the conventional; No 5 playing 450m (stroke 3) and No 6 at 413m (stroke 1). The shorter par 4s frequently require accurate irons off the tee, the ninth (319 off the back) a good example. The par 5s may be reachable for longer hitters but demand accuracy on the approach shot. The par-3 16th is a 208m brute and will test golfers of all levels. Polokwane has a well-equipped pro shop and friendly service. The putting surfaces and overall aesthetics are very good, so well worth a visit.
Jon James
27 February 2023
Polokwane must be in the best condition it has been for many years.
Thinus Labuschagne
31 January 2023
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After a lot of rain the course is in very good shape. Fairways are beautifully manicured and greens are excellent. Not an easy course at all.
Hendriette Liebenberg
10 January 2022
Polokwane is in good condition, like most of the Limpopo courses after abundant rains. This is an excellent bushveld layout, situated between the city suburbs and the N1. Easy to access, close to the Peter Mokaba stadium, built for the 2010 World Cup, which is a prominent landmark. The design is a varied and interesting one, challenging for the club golfer as most of the holes place a premium on accurate tee shots. There's an abundance of distinctive trees (some in the fairway), the rough is quite high, and there are several good water features thanks to the stream which divides the course into two sections. The ninth is a brilliant risk-and-reward short par 4 (one of three) where a large hazard must be carried off the tee to eliminate the dogleg. There are two sizeable par 5s, Nos 7 and 17 (524 & 560). The finish is superb, beginning with the short par 4 14th with its peculiarly shaped Matkovich green guarded by three bunkers. The last four holes measure 1579 metres, and one of them is a long par 3.
Stuart McLean
21 December 2021
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