It wasn’t too long ago that die-hard South African fans relied solely on the likes of Ernie Els and Retief Goosen for any form of home-grown golfing success in the various tournaments held around the world on the PGA and European Tours. The landscape has changed dramatically over the past couple of years and we are almost expectant of a strong performance by any one of our world-class performers.
Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel have both developed into weekly contenders with Major Championships under their belt, with King Louis having risen to a personal best of Number 4 on the current World Rankings List. Both of them are already tournament winners on the 2013 European Tour and I’m sure we can expect big things from the two of them in years to come.
Branden Grace had a break-out year in 2012 with 4 wins on the European Tour, including the Alfred Dunhill Links Championships. Grace finished in 6th position in the Race To Dubai and it’s safe to assume that his golf game will only go from strength to strength. His World Ranking of 34th enables him to play in all the Majors and World Golf Championships, which will further enhance his level of experience. Another South African seemingly destined for success is Grace’s close friend, George Coetzee. Coetzee has prodigious length off the tee and while he hasn’t tasted victory on the European Tour yet, most pundits feel the wait won’t be much longer.
Thomas Aiken, Garth Mulroy, Hennie Otto have all enjoyed sterling careers to date and it’s good to see Richard Sterne has made a full recovery from his injury and let’s hope he can reach the same heights he attained when winning 3 consecutive European Tour-sanctioned events in South Africa in 2008. Tim Clark is another player coming back from injury and after a 2nd place finish in the Sony Open last week, it seems the 2011 Player’s Champion is fighting fit and ready for a strong run in 2013. Retief Goosen is another of our former Major winners who’s 2012 campaign was cut short through injury and it was good to see him back in action at the Volvo Golf Champions. Let’s hope for bigger and brighter things from the “Goose” over the coming months!
Getting back to the other warhorse I mentioned at the top of the post, let’s not forget Ernie Els won the Open at Royal Lytham & St. Anne’s last year and will remain the “Champion Golfer of the Year” until the next edition of the oldest tournament in world golf. Those interested in watching Ernie’s defence of his title live, can contact us for travel package details. Perhaps Louis will avenge his playoff defeat at The Masters and what greater place to spend time with your clients than Augusta National Golf Club?
The European Tour is already a month old and the PGA Tour is going into its 3rd week but there is still plenty of action coming our way thanks to the good folk at SuperSport. I, for one, can hardly wait.