Caldwell shares 14th on promising European Tour return

Jonathan Caldwell (Photo by Aitor Alcalde/Getty Images)

Clandeboye’s Jonathan Caldwell returned his second under par round of the week to snatch a top-15 finish on his European Tour return at the Alfred Dunhill.

The 35-year old arrived in South Africa 10 years since he last competed full-time on the Main Tour after coming through Q-School and he looked determined to make an impression at Leopard Creek Country Club.

Nine pars to the turn on Sunday were followed by bogeys at 10 and 12 but the Northern Irishman wasn’t going to let a good week pass him by. Caldwell took advantage of the par-5s with birdies coming on the 13th and 15th  before he struck another gain in four at the last to sign for a one-under par round of 71 that brought him back to level pegging for the tournament.


In the end, his tie for 14th spot saw Caldwell collect €20,550 for his first day back on the Main Tour job. After a whirlwind few weeks since Q-School in Spain, it’s high time he had a few days off to enjoy it.

Another man with plenty of reason to celebrate is Spain’s Pablo Larrazabal who snatched victory from the jaws of defeat on Sunday.

Entering the final day in Malelane with a three stroke lead, the Spaniard, who was suffering with a big blister on his toe, saw his lead implode when he took 41 strokes to the turn.

However, some Tiger Woods inspired motivation led an incredible rally with Larrazabal picking up three shots in his last four holes, including a birdie at the 72nd to take the title by one.

“I woke up this morning and I didn’t think I was going to play,” said Larrazabal who cited Woods’ memorable victory when hobbling with a broken leg at the 2008 US Open as motivation to continue.

“I couldn’t put my shoe on, I couldn’t walk to the buggy. I really struggled on the back nine, I have a big blister on my right toe and I said to myself ‘If Tiger can win a US Open with a broken leg…’ and I just fought hard.”

Fought hard he did with Larrazabal taking home the winning cheque worth €237,750.

Full scoring HERE

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