Schwartzel too strong at Joburg Open
BY Bruce Young | European PGA Tour | 2011 The Joburg Open | Wrap | 17 Jan 2011
South African Charl Schwartzel has today won the Joburg Open after a final round of 67 left his nearest pursuers in his wake. Schwartzel won by four shots over Garth Mulroy with another shot back to Thomas Aiken. The winner successfully defended the title he had won by six shots in 2010 and took his tally of European Tour titles to six.
The 26 year old took a share of the lead into the final round at the Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club in Johannesburg and quickly established a break with birdies at two of his first three holes.
His fellow leaders starting the final round, Aiken and Mulroy, stayed in touch with the eventual winner until the turn in the miserable early conditions. Mistakes by the pair soon after however and a holed a bunker shot by Schwartzel for birdie at the 13th and was all but over. At that point the leader had opened up a three shot gap and when he added another birdie with a ten foot putt at the final hole he had won by four.
Garth Mulroy, who unsuccessfully played the PGA Tour as a rookie in 2010, eventually finished runner-up after Aiken dropped a shot at the 17th while England’s Jamie Elson was 4th.
The leading Australian was Daniel Gaunt who is beginning to show some of the form that saw him play so well on the Challenge Tour last season and finish third behind Stuart Appleby at the Australian Masters. Gaunt finished 20th following his final round of 72.
The only other Australian to make the cut was Wade Ormsby who finished 44th.
The European Tour now moves to the Middle East for the first of four events starting with this coming week’s Abu Dhabi Championship, followed by a new event in Bahrain, the Volvo Masters, then the Qatar Masters and finally the Dubai Desert Classic.