By John Tuerijama
IT was history in the making for the two Namibian golfers who recently became world champions, and that achievement for both Bertus Damon and teammate Joseph Martin has been a deeply humbling experience. In an exclusive interview with Confidente this week, the visibly excited Damon said the crowning was due to hard work and determination. He said although their competitors saw them as mere participants, the duo had a game plan, which saw them upsetting their South African competitors. He said South Africa was leading during the two-day event but saw the Namibian pair gaining momentum on the second day, which ended with 84-83 points, to the advantage of the Namibians. “Yes, it was a shock but yet again it feels like I am in the seventh heaven following the congratulatory messages from across the, world including our very own Namibians,” he gushed. He added that they both previously played football for Ramblers Football Club (FC) and are now international golf champions. Damon, who started his golfing career in 1998, said he had no idea what to do with his leisure-time after he hung up his soccer boots, so he tried his luck with golf, which soon interested him and decided to take up the sport seriously. He said in 2003 he played in various golf tournaments locally, but never competed internationally until they took part in the 2018 World International Pairs Tournament over the past weekend. The service station owner said during his initial golfing career he tried national trials in Swakopmund but did not make the team. “No, I was not discouraged by that at all but forged ahead, I guess because I was in my 40s, but still went on. Now I am a world champion with teammate Martin.” He said there were 16 teams in total, with Nigeria having one team, while South Africa had two. Before Damon and Martin competed in Portugal they were locally crowned the 2018 Windhoek Lager Golf Championship winners and went on to win the Omeya Golf tournament. Damon believes hard work pays off, and not just in golf, but in each sport code, and emphasises discipline at all times. “I will start training in January next year because our focus and objective is to successfully defend the title next year in Portugal.” He revealed that aside from taking part in the competition they established contact with players from Northern Ireland and England, and that soon golf equipment would be shipped to Namibia to assist young and upcoming golfers. Damon is also involved in assisting young enthusiasts who want to take golf as a sport. He says although the sport is expensive one they will assist where possible. He noted that Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) assisted them with playing gear and other necessities to the tune of N$80,000 each. The dynamic duo qualified for the prestigious World International Pairs finals in Portugal after undergoing an extensive qualification process of the Windhoek Lager International Pairs competition in Namibia. In June, Martin and Damon earned the right to represent their country in Portugal when they won the international section of the Windhoek Lager International Pairs tournament at Omeya Course. NBL through the Windhoek Lager brand then made it possible for them to travel to Portugal, where they amply repaid the investment made by beating 15 other teams from countries as diverse as South Africa, Portugal, Nigeria, the United States, England, Jersey, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Israel and Ireland.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015