Joburg Open. Home Favorite Daren Fichardt Wins.

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Home favorite Darren Fichardt wins the 54 hole Joburg Open at a soggy Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club in South Africa.

Joburg Open

Darren Fichardt

Darren carded a final round -4 under par 68 to claim the Joburg Open title, with a -15 under par total, a one shot victory;

“The form I have been having the last couple of months has been horrendous but I decided at the beginning of the year that I was going to play as many tournaments as I can and just get my game right. And yeah, it worked out.” 

“It’s good to win again.”

“It’s just nice to see hard work paying off. It’s very nice!”

Tied in second place were Stuart Manley, Wales, -5 under 67 today, and Paul Waring, England, -3 under 69, both with -14 under par totals.

All three players qualified for The Open Championship, to be played at Royal Birkdale.

Darren Fichardt, left, Stuart Manley, centre, and Paul Waring, right  (Getty Images)

Off to the Open, Darren, Paul and Stuart / getty

Darren is looking forward to returning to Birkdale;

 “I love Birkdale and I am really looking forward to it. I think I’ve played in the Open six times before but I’ve had no success unfortunately.”

Paul has good memories from Birkdale;

“I’m absolutely made up, obviously going back to Birkdale as well.”

“I’ve got some great memories from there. I played on the Sunday with Phil Mickelson as well so I am more than happy to get back there.”

It will be Stuart’s first Major tournament appearance;

“I’ve been trying for many years at Open qualifying but I’ve never succeeded so I’m pretty pleased.”

Joburg Open. Reduced to 54 Holes.

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The Joburg Open tournament has been reduced to 54 holes, there has been over 200 millimetres of rain during the week at Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club in South Africa.

A major storm suspends play for the day in the third round of the Joburg Open  (Getty Images)

Not looking good / getty

Paul Waring and Darren Fichardt lead with -11 under par scores, with Dean Burmester and Jacques Kruyswijk sharing second place, one shot back at -10 under par.

The leaderboard is tightly packed, six players are at -9, followed by another five at -8 under. So the last round, weather permitting, will be an exciting time.

 

Joburg Open. Paul Waring Leads.

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Paul Waring from England, leads the Joburg Open as fading light halts play in the second round at   Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club, in South Africa.

Joburg Open

Paul Waring / getty

Paul had a one shot lead when second round play was halted, having completed 12 holes on the West Course for -5 under par, giving him a tournament total of -12 under par.

Chasing him down are Darren Fitchhardt, who has completed his second round at -6 under 66 on the West Course and Dean Burmeister, -6 under through 15 holes, also on the West, both of these South Africans are  at -11 under for the competition.

Darren was happy with his position in the tournament;

“I got off to a great start. I knew it was going to play long and I needed to get off to a good start and that I did.” 

“I got to six under pretty quickly, after eight I was six under so I was very happy about that start.” 

“Unfortunately I made a bogey on the tenth and then birdied the 18th, so I ended off well, but I am very happy with 66.”

Defending champion Hayden Porteous, from South Africa, carded -4 under 67 on the East, and now has two bogey free rounds for his -9 under total, and is T5;

“To have two bogey-free rounds in a row is an awesome feeling and it just leads to more confidence.”

“Hopefully I can do the same on the weekend. I wouldn’t say West is that tough – as long as you are hitting the fairways, you have a chance to make birdie coming into the greens.”

“But to do it around the East is not easy. You do have a few tough holes out there and to get away from that course unscathed is a pretty good feeling.”

Joburg Open. Round 1 Play Suspended. Paul Peterson Leads.

 

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Round 1 play at the Joburg Open was suspended, due to a waterlogged  Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club, in South Africa. Paul Peterson leads the tournament, which will restart at 0645 on Friday.

Joburg Open

Paul Peterson / getty

Paul, from the USA, completed his opening round at the Joburg Open, and sits at the top of the leaderboard, after carding -9 under par 63, with a new putter in his bag;

“It was fun out there today, birdieing half of the holes is never bad and bogey-free to match, so I felt really good out there.”

“I got into a nice rhythm and I put a new putter in play this week. It proved to be a good first round with it so I’m really happy.”

“Thankfully we were in the fairway a lot, ball in hand always nice but I feel like I’ve been playing really well the last few weeks and I feel like a round like this has been building, so to have it happen sooner than I thought is great.”

“I’m feeling like I’m in a good place right now.”

Aaron Rai and Paul Waring, both from England, share second place two shots back at -7 under par after rounds of 65.

There seems to be some confusion about the scoring from this tournament, as it has been reported that Paul Peterson shot -9 under 62, which would make it a par 71 course. But Aaron and Paul Waring have scores of -7 under 65, a par 72. The East Course, which they played is usually a 6940 yard par 72. So did Paul Peterson really card a -9 under 63?

Update.

I have received information that the West Course is being played as a par 71 this week. So -9 under 62 is correct for Paul Peterson.

Aaron Rai and Paul Waring both carded -7 under 65 on the East Course, which is paying at it’s usual par 72.

Things should level out after the second round.

 

Joburg Open. Hayden Porteous Maiden Tour Victory

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Hayden Porteous claimed his maiden European Tour victory, the Joburg Open at the Royal Johannesburg & Kensington Golf Club in South Africa. It also gets him into The Open this year at Royal Troon. It was also a one two for South Africa in the placings.

Joburg Open

Hayden Porteous / Getty Images

Hayden carded a final bogey free round -3 under par 69 to win the Joburg Open at -18 under par, a two shot maiden victory. He started to worry the putts not dropping in, but made birdie on the last to seal the deal;

“Words can’t describe how I feel right now, it’s surreal to be honest.”

“I’ve been battling with my golf for the last few months and hats off to (fitness coach) Garth Milne for all the strategy and game-plan and gym.”

“There was a lot of sweat and tears and I can’t get over this feeling right now.”

“When I get home and things start to calm down I’m going to have a proper think about it.”

“All the doors that are open because of winning the Joburg Open, it’s a dream come true.” 

“I started to hit a few fairways and a lot more greens and gave myself some chances to make birdie, unfortunately the putts didn’t go in but I was keeping the pressure low and making sure I was going to be making par.”

“To make a birdie on the 18th was the best feeling in the world.”

“I was just thinking ‘no silly mistakes’. Go left side of the green and hope the wind drags it to the right and then I hit probably the best five iron I’ve hit all week and it landed just short of pin high and to about 15-20 feet.”

“A putt I could only dream of to win the Joburg Open.”

“To qualify to get into The Open on merit is a big step in my career.”

“To play The Open for any player in the world is a big deal and hopefully I can do South Africa proud and do well there.”

Zander Lombard was in second place at -16 under par, his last round -1 under 71 good enough to get him a place at The Open;

“It’s a great bonus for coming second and I’ll definitely open up my schedule to fit it in.”

Four players tied in third place, at -15 under par, Björn Åkesson, SwedenDaniel Im, USAJustin Walters South Africa and Anthony Wall from England.

Anthony Wall won the third place for a spot at The Open, for the  second consecutive year;

“I’ve been lucky, thank goodness. I get to play in the greatest event in the world again.”

“I finished second last year right on the nail and this year the same so, thank God.”

“It’s been a truly wonderful week. I’m bitterly disappointed but to get an Open spot definitely softens the blow. It’s the greatest honour a golfer can have.”

“I played last year and finished 11th again and it’s just the greatest place to play golf.”

Joburg Open. Three Players Tied at the Top.

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There are three players tied at the top of the Joburg Open leaderboard after three rounds at Royal Johannesburg & Kensington Golf Club in South Africa. Anthony Wall, Zander Lombard and Hayden Porteous will take a two shot lead into the final round tomorrow.

Joburg Open

Anthony Wall / Getty Images

Anthony is searching for only his second win on the European Tour at the Joburg Open, sixteen years after his first victory. He carded -4 under par 68 on the East course, and joins Hayden and Zander at the top of the leaderboard on -15 under par for the competition, and a two shot lead over the field going into the final round tomorrow.

Everyone played the East course today, with Zander posting  one of the low rounds of the day -7 under par 65, and Hayden -4 under 68.

Anthony is determined to make his children proud of him;

“That’s why I play golf now, to try and make my children proud of me, to try and win as many times as possible.”

“At the end of the day I’m father now before I am a golfer, that switched a few years ago and I just want to keep playing for them and my wife so they can be proud of me.”

“I drove the ball well. That was my weakness the first two days, today I was great off the tee. I holed a couple of good long ones, but I also missed three or four I could have holed, so all-in-all it was a good day.”

“I’ve got a great chance tomorrow. But they’re all good players, someone’s going to be a little luckier tomorrow and win, so hopefully it’s me.”

Four players share fourth spot at -13 under par for the tournament, Ross McGowan, who slipped back today with a +1 over par round, Jacques Blaauw -5 under 67,  Daniel Im, who shared the low round score today -7 under, and Paul Dunne -4 under 68, in his eighth start on Tour.

This competition is very tight and anyone who comes up with low round tomorrow could jump up and take the title, it should be an exciting final round at the Royal Johannesburg & Kensington Golf Club.

Joburg Open. Ross McGowan Has Half-Way Lead.

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Ross McGowan from England has the half-way lead in the Joburg Open in Johannesburg at the  Royal Johannesburg & Kensington Golf Club.

Joburg Open

Ross McGowan / Getty Images

A couple of Eagles on the par fives helped Ross to his -9 under par 62 in the second round of the Joburg Open, on the West course. Posting a half-way score of -14 under par, and a healthy three shot lead going into the week-end. He said he had played very well, even thinking about a 59;

“I played well yesterday and started well today, I opened up with two birdies. I went a bit flat for a few holes and then on the back nine, the fireworks happened.”

“I holed a wedge at 12 today which was nice and then I hit two great shots into the par five, so I had 15-20 feet there for eagle and managed to hole that one as well.”

“In Madrid I shot a 60, so you never know. I’ll try to go low again tomorrow.”

“I think I would have needed to be a few shots better on the front nine to even consider it but I’ve been close before.”

Four players share second place, those three shots adrift with -11 under par totals, they are, Jean Hugo, Hayden Porteous, from South AfricaAnthony Wall, England and Felipe Aguilar from Chile.

Anthony shot a second round -5 under 67 on the tougher East course, while Jean and Felipe carded -6 under 65 on the West, with Hayden scoring -5 under par 66, also on the par 71 West course.

Johan Carlson, Sweden and Stuart Manley, Wales, are tied in sixth place at -10 under par for the competition.  Paul Dunne, from Ireland, is playing in just his eighth professional tournament, he carded eight birdies in a flawless -8 under 63 on the West to be in the group T8 at -9 under par, in this very International field.

There are three places at The Open  are up for grabs this week with the top three players in the top ten not already exempt securing a place at Royal Troon.