GEORGE GOLF NEWS - George golfer Heinrich Bruiners ended a six-year victory drought as he held off the challenge of overnight leader Anton Haig in the final round to win the Chase to Sunshine Tour #8 on the IGT Challenge Tour last Thursday.
The Gary Player Class of 2019 member showed all his experience under pressure with a closing six-under-par 66 at Modderfontein Golf Club to triumph on 12-under 204.
That was two shots better than Haig, who settled for a share of second alongside rookies Luke Mayo and Gareth Sargent after signing for 74.
"It's the best feeling in the world to lift a trophy again," said the 32-year-old Southern Cape native, who celebrated his maiden success in the Vodacom Origins series on the Sunshine Tour in 2013.
"It doesn't matter how big or small the tournament; you still have to do all the right things to win and after so many close calls in the last 18 months, it feels incredible to get over the finish line. This didn't just happen today. It's been building for a long time and the Gary Player Class boot camps helped me immensely to get to this point. This win means more to me than anyone can imagine."
Haig set the 36-hole target at 12-under with successive rounds of 66. Bruiners began the final round six shots adrift, in joint second with Sargent and fellow Gary Player Class member Makhetha Mazibuko.
The overnight leader followed a birdie start with a triple bogey seven on second, but birdied two of the par fives - eight and 10 - to get back to 12-under. Bruiners got within two shots of Haig with birdies on the third and eighth holes and an eagle two on the seventh.
"The turning point was the 12th and 13th holes," Bruiners said. "I lost in two play-offs last year on the Big Easy and IGT Tours and they taught me a lot. It showed me that I was headed in the right direction, but there are so many things that influence you as a professional golfer. I realised I was good enough to win but I just needed to find the right formula."
The final results are: 204 Heinrich Bruiners 70 68 66; 206 Luke Mayo 68 71 67, Gareth Sargent 70 68 68, Anton Haig 66 66 74; 209 Makhetha Mazibuko 69 69 71; 212 Marthin Scheepers 70 73 69; 213 Martin Rohwer 74 73 66, Carlo Heunis 75 69 69, Wynand Dingle 75 72 66, Dylan Naidoo 68 72 73.
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