Erik Van Rooyen finished in a tie for 30th at the Nedbank golf Challenge on Sunday. Photo: David Cannon

JOHANNESBURG – South Africa’s Erik van Rooyen rose to a career high 50th in the world golf rankings released on Monday.

Van Rooyen finished in a tie for 30th at the Nedbank golf Challenge which prompted his rise of one position from 51st a week prior.

If Van Rooyen maintains a place in the top-50 by the end of the calendar year, he will earn an automatic invite to the year’s first Major - The Masters - in 2020.

The 29-year-old finished second at the Turkish Airlines Open two weeks ago, losing out in a six-man play-off.

Van Rooyen has risen steadily up the rankings, starting out the year 141st in the world. His consistent play has also seen him break through for his maiden European Tour victory this season - triumphing at the Scandinavian Invitation in August.

Louis Oosthuizen remains SA’s top-ranked player at 24th in the world, with Van Rooyen the next best local golfer.

Justin Harding is 66th, while Shaun Norris rose 15 spots to 75th following a second place finish at the Mitsui Sumitomo VISA Taiheiyo Masters in Japan over the weekend. 

Christiaan Bezuidenhout is 101st and Dylan Frittelli is 104th. Branden Grace continues to fall in the rankings, now down to 126th after starting the year in 49th. The 31-year-old eight-time European Tour event winner is a former world number-10.  

African News Agency (ANA)