Joburg Open. Shubhankar Sharma Has Maiden Tour Victory.

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Shubhankar Sharma, from India, has Maiden European Tour victory winning the Joburg Open on Monday in South Africa.

Joburg Open

Shubhankar Sharma / getty

Shubhankar, carded -3 under 69 at  Randpark Golf Club to win his first Tour title the Joburg Open with a -23 under par total, and with the victory came a place at next years The Open;

“It feels absolutely wonderful to have won this week.”

“I actually wasn’t going to come here about a week ago and I decided to come so I’m really happy that I came.”

“This is my first time in South Africa and I don’t think I’m ever going forget my first time in South Africa.”

“I hit the ball good and I putted really well but the key up-and-downs I made over the first three days, I think I only missed two up-and-downs over the whole week.”

“Even today, the up-and-downs I made on the tenth, the 13th and the 15th were very crucial. Once in a while you just have to make a few par saves to get a  round going and I did just that the whole week.”

 Erik van Rooyen the local favorite from South Africa came second, a charging -6 under 66 last round giving him a -20 under par total.

Sharing third place were  Shaun Norris, South Africa, -7 under 65 today, and Tapio Pulkkanen from Finland with -4 under 68, both players finished on -17 under par.

Earning that those coveted three places at The Open on  Carnoustie Golf Links next year were Shubhankar, Shaun and Tapio.

Carnoustie Golf Links

Carnoustie bound trio / getty

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Joburg Open. Rain Wrecks Final Round.

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Rain wrecks the final round of the Joburg Open, as play was suspended for the day on the  Randpark Golf Club in South Africa.

Joburg Open

9th Green in Joburg / getty

Shubhankar Sharma, from India,  was -2 under having completed only seven holes of his final round of the Joburg Open, where was is gunning for his Maiden European Tour victory. His five shot lead at the start of play reduced by one shot, but at -22 for the tournament is still in a commanding position for when play resumes on Monday morning;

“I’m going to treat it like another day, I’m going to do the same things which I’ve been doing the last four days.”

“It is not frustrating but you get into a groove when you start and you don’t want to come off. I saw the clouds coming on the seventh hole and I was praying we could finish but we can’t help it.”

“I’m playing well so I want to continue doing that.”

“I had to cancel my flight tickets today but that was an easy thing to do considering the position I’m in.”

Local favorite Erik van Rooyen, South Africa, has given the home fans some hope as he carded -4 under par through eight holes, to get to -18 under for the tournament.

 James Morrison, England, even par through seven holes, and Tapio Pulkkanen, Finland, -1 under through eight share third place at -14 under par for the soggy competition.

Play is scheduled to resume on Monday 11th December at 0730 local time, keep your fingers crossed for good weather.

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Joburg Open. Shubhankar Sharma Has 54 Hole Lead.

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Shubhankar Sharma, from India,has the 54 hole lead at the Joburg Open.

Joburg Open

Shubhankar Sharma / getty

Shubhankar fired -7 under par 65 on the Firethorn Course at Randpark Golf Club to lead the Joburg Open by five shots at -20 under par;

“I’m really happy, I wanted to play even though I shot a ten under yesterday and it is always difficult to follow up on a low round.”

“I’m really proud of the way I played today.”

“I’m very pleased that I came to the Joburg Open. I had my visa but it has been a very long season so I was contemplating if I wanted to come here.”

“I’m really happy that I did!”

Christofer Blomstrand, Sweden, has second place, coming close to posting a 59, having a good day with the putter, but he settled for a -10 under 62, getting him to within five shots of the leader at -15 under par, qualifying for The Open is also on his mind;

“It’s a really nice birthday present! I was really happy with my putter.”

“I was hitting quite good shots in the beginning of my round and then I holed them as well.”

 “Of course it means a lot that there are Open Championship spots available here but we have to treat this like a normal event.”

Sharing third place at -14 under par are James Morrison, England, -5 under 67 today  and Erik van Rooyen, South Africa, -2 under 70.

James is relying on his experience;

“Experience told me what I needed to do and to shoot, but you can’t factor in the guy who shoots 62, or the guy who’s seven under and pulling away.”

 “Can’t wait for tomorrow, I’ve been here so many times before so I’ve got to draw on all my experience, losses and wins.”

“The thought of getting into the Open enters my thinking massively.”

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Joburg Open. Round 2 Suspended, Tapio Pulkkanen Leads.


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Tapio Pulkkanen, Finland, leads the Joburg Open as the second round was suspended  at Randpark Golf Club in South Africa due to a storm.

Joburg Open

Tapio Pulkkanen / getty

Tapio shot a second round -8 under par 64 on the Firethorn Course, and remains bogey free as he sits on top of the Joburg Open leaderboard  with a -14 under par total, helped by a red hot putter;

“I’m really happy with my game, I’ve been driving the ball really well, especially today, it’s a fantastic feeling.”

“It was a good start to my round with six birdies in a row. The putter has been really hot, I practiced my aiming a little before the tournament and it’s been much better this week.”

“I tried to force my last putt yesterday to catch Erik, I was one behind him. We had good battles last season. I beat him in Kazakhstan but he beat me in China. He’s a fun guy.”

“Leading a European Tour event so early on in my season sounds more magnificent than it really is. It’s a similar feeling to the Challenge Tour actually, so I’m comfortable.”

Shubhankar Sharma from India surged up the leaderboard to claim second place with a second round -10 under 61 on the Bushwillow Course, to take second place at -13 under par.

Top South African player is  Erik van Rooyen, -5 under on Firethorn, he shares third place with Mikko Korhonen, Finland, who carded -6 under 65 on Bushwillow, both at -12 under for the competition.

A brewing storm halted play late on in the day, but none of the players who still have to complete their second rounds can alter the top of the leaderboard.

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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.”