I had not played St Francis Links for 15 years as its Eastern Cape location had been inconvenient for me. Returning after all that time I soon realised I had denied myself one of the finest golfing experiences in South Africa. The timing of my visit wasn’t great primarily because of the gale force wind and intermittent rain that morning standing on the first tee. It didn’t help that I was playing alone. However, this was one of the best days I have spent on a golf course (at least for the last 15 holes). Starting out, with the wind belting in from the north-west, the fairways looked inadequately narrow. I wondered if the 10 balls in the bag would be enough. As it turned out I only lost two, one of them on the first hole. The course was sublime, everything where it should be. Bunkers a bit wild though. The course was being prepared for the PGA Championship, so the greens were pacey, but not crazy. Slopes reasonable and fair. The environment of the St Francis Links estate was my kind of place. The houses don’t interfere with the course. I can imagine how fun this can be on a calm day, but I particularly enjoyed having to contend with the elements at their worst. I will be returning much sooner next time.