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Lewis Chitengwa passes away suddenly

The golfing community was shocked yesterday to
learn that one of its exciting prospects, 26-year old Lewis Chitengwa, passed away suddenly at the University of Alberta Hospital in Canada, on Saturday afternoon.

"Lewis was one of Southern Africa's most promising and popular young golfers. He was a credit to the game, always taking time to thank Tournament Sponsors, Officials and administrators at each event he played in", remarked Louis Martin, Chief Executive of the Southern Africa Tour.

Martin added: "It is with profound shock and disbelief that we have come to learn of his tragic and untimely passing. Lewis will be sadly missed by all at the Southern Africa Tour and our thoughts and sympathies are extended to his family".

According to reports, the Zimbabwean fell ill and withdrew from the third round of the Telus Edmonton Open, two hours prior to his tee-off time. He had called an ambulance earlier in the day and was taken to Misericordia Hospital in Edmonton.

After undergoing tests, Chitengwa was diagnosed with flu and not admitted. He returned to the home of Larry Chalmers, who hosted the golfer for the week. Shortly after, he called fellow Canadian Tour Member and good friend, Brennan Webb.

At 14h15 Webb noticed that Chitengwa's condition had worsened and he called for a second ambulance, which took Chitengwa to the University of Alberta Hospital. Chitengwa was lucid en route to the University of Alberta Hospital, but died 45 minutes after arrival, despite valiant attempts to save his life.

The Edmonton health officials are expected to release the cause of death pending an autopsy, to be conducted in the next few days.

Chitengwa, a regular competitor on the Sunshine Tour, was a popular contender among his peers. In 1993, Chitengwa became the first black golfer to win the South African Amateur Championship. The three-time Zimbabwe Amateur Champion, born in Harare, hailed fellow Zimbabwean, Nick Price, as one of his biggest mentors.


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