Burmester opens Euro season with Joburg title

Sports

Dean Burmester shot a bogey-free final-round 64 to win the Joburg Open by three shots Sunday as overnight leader Thriston Lawrence imploded at the Houghton Golf Club.

Burmester made six birdies and cruised through his round for a 18-under 262 total to overturn a three-shot deficit and claim his third win on the DP World Tour and first in 2½ years.

“I was a little rusty coming in, but my team did such a great job getting me ready for this week … and it paid off,” said Burmester, whose previous win was at the Tenerife Open in May 2021. “I knew I had to do something special, and fortunately I was able to do that.”

The 34-year-old South African finished ahead of second-place compatriot Darren Fichardt, whose final-round 64 included an eagle for a total of 265. It was South African-dominated leaderboard, with eight of the top 11 being home players.

Defending champion Dan Bradbury from England moved into third place, five back of Burmester, after shooting a 64 on the final day.

The top three finishers all qualified for The Open at Royal Troon in July.

Lawrence, who led after the first round and by three shots after Saturday’s third round, dropped four strokes in his first five holes and had a double-bogey coming home in shooting a 5-over 75. That was eight shots worse than any of his first three rounds, and he finished in a tie for seventh at 10 under.

The Joburg Open marks the start of the European tour season, which begins with three straight tournaments in South Africa that are co-sanctioned by the country’s Sunshine Tour.

Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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