BY MUNYARADZI MADZOKERE
Zimbabwe professional golfer Ben Follett-Smith is on the verge of joining fellow Zimbabwean Scott Vincent on the Asia Tour as he leads the race at the Qualifying School Final Stage, Lakeview Resort and Golf Club in Thailand.
Follett-Smith, who turned pro late 2017, will need to be among the top 35 golfers on the leader board in the fifth and final round of the competition today to earn the Asia Tour card.
The 25-year-old golfer has failed to earn the lucrative card two times before but looks almost certain to hit the jackpot this time around.
In fact Follett-Smith may do it in style by finishing on top of the pile after leading the chase since the second round on Thursday.
Follett-Smith carded 65, 68, 67 and 70 in the last four rounds to go two shots in front of Swedes Malcolm Kokocinski and Bjorn Hellgren on 14-under.
Two South Africans Neil Schietekat and Trevor Fisher Jnr are also delicately poised for tour cards with the former lying fourth while the latter is tied for fifth.
Follett-Smith has been playing a lot on the Sunshine Tour where he had struggled to compete for titles.
However, the golfer, who partnered fellow compatriot and Asian Tour member Vincent at the 2018 World Cup of Golf in Melbourne, claimed his first title on the Sunshine Tour at the Cape Town Open last February and was the Tour’s Rookie of the Year in 2018.
One of the brightest prospects in Zimbabwe golf, Follett-Smith has a dream of making it to the lucrative US PGA Tour and compete for the major championships.
And currently ranked 602 in the world, he also harbours the ambition to reach number one and emulate Zimbabwean legend Nick Price.
Since he turned pro, Follett-Smith has also won the Big Easy IGT Challenge in just his second start on the South African Development Tour and National Aids Council (NAC) Pro-Am golf tournament in Zimbabwe.