In a high-profile appointment, Meyer du Toit, a former PGA Club Pro of the Year, has been announced as the new general manager at Knysna Golf Club in the Garden Route. The club had been without a manager for several months since Quinten Webster retired. He begins on March 1.
Du Toit and his wife Vickey returned to South Africa at the end of 2020 after a year in the United States working as personal manager for his good friend and PGA Tour player Branden Grace. He occasionally caddied for Grace.
The Du Toits both have strong roots in Knysna, and wish to settle there and raise a family.
“Touring the States with Branden (on the PGA Tour) was an amazing experience,” said Du Toit, 41. “We were constantly on the move. I learnt a lot and walked some of the most beautiful courses in the world. I will forever be grateful for the opportunity I had.”
Du Toit’s career in the golf industry began in Knysna in 2003 with stints as head professional at Pezula and Simola before moving on in 2013 to San Lameer as golf director. That’s where he won the PGA Club Pro of the Year award in 2016, having excelled in his new position. He helped transform the KZN South Coast club, overseeing a significant upgrade of the resort’s facilities.
“Soon after arriving back I was excited to hear that Knysna GC was advertising the position of GM. Having spent much of my career here I’d built strong relationships with clubs in the area and knew the position could offer an opportunity to renew old acquaintances and develop new contacts.
“I’ve always regarded Knysna as an incredibly welcoming club. It’s a visitor-friendly course with one of the best clubhouses I’ve seen. I get a buzz just driving into the car park. I already feel at home here.”
Club captain David McIlvenna said: “Meyer’s drive, enthusiasm and approachable manner was what we were looking for. This, together with his knowledge and understanding of the golfing landscape in this area, made him an outstanding candidate.”
Club president Kevin Horack added: “Meyer is one of the best in the business when it comes to golf management and promotion. Our club is fortunate to have somebody of his calibre.”
STEADY TURNOVER AT TOP 100 CLUBS OF MANAGERS AND GOLF DIRECTORS
Opportunities abound in golf club management at Top 100 courses, there being a regular turnover of personnel, whether it be general managers or golf directors. Fancourt has been interviewing candidates for two vacant golf director positions to be announced soon.
Waterkloof club manager Gerhard Lombard is taking over at Elements Private Reserve in Limpopo from Ian Leach, who is retiring after a long and distinguished career in both the business world and golf club administration.
Prince’s Grant on the KZN North Coast recently appointed a new golf director in PGA pro Hilton Anderson, as did Hermanus with Louis Bester, while Zimbali GM Gavin Woodroffe relocated back to the Cape in the same position at Steenberg, his position filled by Sheldon Stroebel, previously operations manager at Durban CC.
Ed Retief moved from Glenvista in the south of Johannesburg to become golf manager at Eye of Africa estate a few kilometres further south.
During 2020, 10 new golf directors appointed were Tim Steynberg at Dainfern, Darrin Hedley at Bryanston, Wicus Botes at Serengeti, John Woudberg at Ebotse Links, Jamie Kietzmann at Simola, Pierre van Vuuren at San Lameer, Julian Shaw at Erinvale, Rikus Nortje at Steenberg, Darryn Pitout at De Zalze, and Kevin Stone at Mount Edgecombe.
New managers included Janyne Marais at Irene CC, Paul Stoner at Clovelly, Bryan Coleman at Cotswold Downs, Don Ball at King David Mowbray, Hans Jonck at Kyalami CC, Gerard Metzer at Durban CC, Janice Jamieson at East London, and Tyronne Farrell at Oubaai.