There were some interesting results this weekend on the major tours this week. One tournament that I didn’t see, other than highlights was the South African Open on the #LET. Aside from the margin of victory, 4 shots, there were two stand out performances.
South African Ladies Open
Ashleigh Buhai fired a four under par final round to maintain the four shot advantage she’s held since the midway point. The South African now boasts national championships in South Africa, Australia, Scottish and the UK (The Open). Incredible work.
16 year old Chiara Noja was a very creditable third place after a pair of 69s over the weekend. I have known about Chiara for a couple of years when I think she featured on a Peter Finch video. She turned pro aged 14 or 15. One to watch for the future!
Magical Kenya Open
The DP World Tour moved to Kenya this week after a week long hiatus. All eyes were on Marcel Siem, winner of the Indian Open. The signs were ominous as I saw him fist-pumping holing a 15 foot par putt on only the second hole of the tournament. Unfortunately, he would only play 34 more holes after that.
The tournament was won by Jorge Campillo. This was his 3rd win on the tour, exactly 3 years and 3 days since his last victory. He shot an almost flawless round and maintained his two shot advantage from the start of the day.
He shot 5 under on the day, with one bogey. After a few great up and downs early in the round, and a couple of wobbles in the middle, he cruised to the win in the end. He even played the final hole, a par 5, as a traditional par 5 (almost) taking 3 irons to get to the green.
The Spaniard gets his name on the trophy along with other names, and of course, it had to be pointed out that Seve was amongst them.
Other highlights of the tournament were the crowd. The competition was very well followed and the noise when local hero, Mutahi Kibugu, was playing was intense: especially on the final hole on the Friday when he sunk a putt to make the cut as the only Kenyan.
Also, try to check out the shot by Masahiro Kawamura on the fourth hole on the final day. It’s on the DP World Tour Website, it is well worth the watch.
The Players is one of the flagship events on the US PGA tour. It’s one of the tournaments that I would almost be glad to add to my growing list of streaming services subscriptions. Coverage for me was YouTube highlights and podcast summaries by The First Cut and No Laying Up. Check out more recommended podcasts here.
The top three players in the world were grouped together on the opening rounds. Only Scottie Scheffler made it to the weekend with Jon Rahm withdrawing, due to illness, and Rory McIlroy missing the cut by some distance.
After a bit of an anomaly on the first day the once again stacked field began to settle into the top players rising to the top with Scottie holding a two shot lead going into the final day.
Scottie Scheffler goes on to comfortably win the championship with most players around him going backwards. Congratulations to Tyrell Hatton for coming a distant second. He shot a 29 coming home to secure second spot.
I’m not a betting man but I called Scottie before the tournament. He’s missed out on this “Scottie Slam” but is on a fine run of form and it must make the favourite to retain The Masters in less than a month.
Overall this weekend’s winners won by some margin. In theory Kawamura had a chance on the final hole if he made his putt Campillo three putted but it was all fairly comfortable in the end.
Congratulations too to LIV reject Wade Ormsby who won the International Series Thailand in a playoff.