Centurion — Christiaan Bezuidenhout will be aiming to make the most of his qualification for The Open at St Andrews, after punching a ticket to the oldest event in golf with a top finish on the PGA Tour on Sunday.
Bezuidenhout ended tied second at the John Deere Classic in Illinois with a four-round total of 18-under following scores of 69 65 66 66. American J.T. Poston triumphed by three on 21-under.
“I was going to play in the Genesis Scottish Open next week, so we leave tomorrow afternoon, flying to the Genesis Scottish Open. So I guess I'll be there for two weeks and not one week now,” said Bezuidenhout after his round.
“It's an awesome event, beautiful tournament. To play it at the home of golf as well in the 150th Open is pretty special.”
Bezuidenhout’s top result in the John Deere saw him rise 16 spots to 59th in the world ranking, heading back towards his career high of 33rd he achieved last year.
In fact, the 28-year-old’s next best finish this year was a tie for 12th and his play last week will certainly bode well for his next few events.
“Yeah, [it was] definitely a confidence booster.
“I’ve put in a lot of hard work over the last week, especially my golf swing and just overall my game, my fitness. My trainer is here as well. We've been doing a lot of good things over the last few months, so it's nice to see the results coming through and the hard work is paying off.”
Elsewhere, Branden Grace won the Saudi-funded Portland LIV Golf event. Grace pocketed a $4 million (R65.9m) first prize, while Louis Oosthuizen was the next best SA player in fifth place and earned $975k (R15.8m). Justin Harding also cracked the top-10 with a eighth place finish and a payout of $602.5k (R9.8m).