Dean Burmester kisses the Tshwane Open trophy at Pretoria Country Club on Sunday. Picture: GALLO IMAGES/LUKE WALKER
Dean Burmester kisses the Tshwane Open trophy at Pretoria Country Club on Sunday. Picture: GALLO IMAGES/LUKE WALKER

South African Dean Burmester is the nearly man of the European Tour no longer after a three-shot victory in the Tshwane Open on Sunday finally broke his title duck.

One stroke behind entering the final round, the Zimbabwe-born golfer began with three birdies in a six-birdie front nine at Pretoria Country Club to take a lead he never surrendered.

He turned in six-under 29 and was six shots ahead before three bogeys on the back nine trimmed his winning margin as he closed with a 65.

I have come close to winning on the European tour several times and it is a wonderful feeling to get over the finish line at last

Spaniard Jorge Campillo (68) and Finn Mikko Korhonen (67) shared second place on 269 with Peter Uihlein from the US one shot further back.

"This is an amazing day for me," Burmester said after receiving the trophy. "I am almost lost for words after my success. I have come close to winning on the European Tour several times and it is a wonderful feeling to get over the finish line at last.

"European Tour winner Dean Burmester — that sounds just great. I remained calm throughout the final 18 holes and did not realise I was well in front until close to the end when my caddie updated me on the scores. As a Zimbabwe boy I also want to thank SA for adopting and looking after me."

Swede Alexander Bjork and Scott Jamieson of Scotland, the overnight leaders, quickly fell by the wayside as Burmester took charge of the final round.

Bjork closed with a level-par 71 for fifth place while the 78 of Jamieson included three double bogeys.

Although he finished well down the field, few golfers left Pretoria happier than 2008 US Masters champion Trevor Immelman of SA.

Having failed to make a tournament cut since May 2016, his fortunes took a turn for the better this week.

Rounds of 71 and 70 got Immelman into the final two rounds and a pair of 69s will offer encouragement for the rest of the season.

AFP

Please login or register to comment.