The South African assault on the Scandinavian Invitation was lucrative in many ways as Erik van Rooyen took his season earnings over the €1-million mark and Dean Burmester climbed 37 places in the latest world rankings.
Van Rooyen was obviously the talk of the town after grabbing his maiden win after a near-perfect final round of 64. His 72nd-hole birdie edged him past Matt Fiztpatrick, who started the week as the No 1-ranked player in the field.
The victory moves the South African up to ninth in the Race to Dubai, one behind Louis Oosthuizen, as he took away the €250,000 cheque (R4,245,118) for first prize at Hills Golf and Sports Club.
Van Rooyen’s earnings on the European Tour now stand at €1,230,885 while there was also a big rankings boost. The 150th European Tour moved past Branden Grace as the country’s third-best player. The win helped Van Rooyen climb 26 notches to sit in 61st place, a massive achievement when you consider his starting position for 2019 was outside the top 140.
Grace dropped two places to 75th, down from his entry position of 49 at the turn of the year.
A third-place finish in Gothenburg was enough for Burmester to bring home €84,450 (R1,434,001) as he moved up to 179th in the world. It’s been a lean season by his lofty standards with his weekend work ensuring his first top five since the Dimension Data Pro-Am on home soil.
Both Van Rooyen and Burmester must be excited at the prospect of cashing in further with the Omega European Masters, Porsche European Open, KLM Open all to play before the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth. Following that Rolex Series event is the Dunhill Links at the end of September.
Louis Oosthuizen maintained his place as the country’s No 1 and his world ranking which remained at 22 following his week at the Tour Championship. He finished T21 alongside Patrick Cantlay and his newest Presidents Cup teammate Abraham Ancer.
– By Wade Pretorius