Final day woes for Dawson as Bezuidenhout strikes at Fancourt

Christiaan Bezuidenhout courtesy of the The Sunshine Tour

It wasn’t the day Robin Dawson would’ve been hoping for when he woke up on Sunday morning as he saw his good work of 54-holes undone in a closing 77 at the Dimension Data Pro-Am.

For making the cut at Fancourt, the Tramore professional banked €1,513.33 but at level par on his round through 12 holes, he would’ve been aiming much higher.

A bogey on 13 knocked Dawson off kilter and he dropped another on 14, double-bogeyed 15 and bogeyed his penultimate hole for a damage homeward half of 41 – his 2-under par tally resigning him to 64th of the 64 Sunday finished.

At the other end of the spectrum, Christiaan Bezuidenhout completed a wire-to-wire victory thanks to a stunning eagle on the 72nd hole at Fancourt Golf Estate.

The South African stood on the par five 18th tee trailing countryman George Coetzee by one stroke but hit an incredible second shot to six feet and holed the eagle putt to card a five under par round of 67 and reach 25-under par for the tournament, one clear of Coetzee.

Bezuidenhout began the day two strokes ahead of his nearest challengers but was forced to produce his best golf until the end as he held his nerve to secure an emotional victory in a tournament which he has always wanted to win.

“To win it with an eagle on the last is really special,” he said. “This is a special event for the South African boys and I’ve always wanted to put my name on that trophy. I’ve done it now, so I’m pretty pleased.

“I actually thought I just needed a birdie on the last hole. I was going at the flag because I knew I needed to birdie or eagle to win it and it came out perfect. To have a six-foot putt to win was great.

“I’m just going to keep on going and keep doing my best. Me and my coach are working on some great stuff and I’m just going to keep on going.”

The 25-year-old is now projected to move into the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking for the first time in his career.

Coetzee, who could only par the final hole which left the door open for Bezuidenhout to take advantage, finished second on 24 under par, two strokes clear of Richard Sterne in third on 22 under par.

Spain’s Santiago Tarrio Ben finished as the highest-placed European player in fourth place on 17 under par, with Road to Mallorca Number One JC Ritchie a place and a shot further back to record his third successive top ten finish on the European Challenge Tour.

Bezuidenhout’s victory earns him a spot in the WGC – FedEx St Jude Invitational in Memphis, Tennessee, in July and he will tee it up in the first World Golf Championships event of the year in Mexico next week, a spot which he earned through his finish on the 2019 Race to Dubai Rankings Presented by Rolex.

Ritchie leads the Road to Mallorca Rankings on 49,167 points following his third top ten in as many events, while RAM Cape Town Open Champion Anton Karlsson is second. South African trio Wilco Nienaber, Garrick Higgo and Jacques Kruyswijk occupy spots three to five, respectively, and Tarrio Ben has jumped from 43rd place to sixth following his fourth place finish in George.

Full scoring HERE

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