Cape Town – Darren Fichardt added his name to the rich history of South African golf when
he won the prestigious Eye of Africa PGA Championship on Sunday, and on a day
when the Sunshine Tour itself made history with its coverage of the country’s
second oldest professional golf tournament.

Fichardt
beat Chile’s Matias Calderon with a birdie on the third playoff hole after both
finished regulation play tied for the lead on 20-under par at the Eye of Africa
Signature Golf Estate.

“I
have always wanted to win the Eye of Africa PGA Championship, and the way I won
it was very special. To win in a playoff is always awesome, and then hitting a
driver and five iron and making a good putt for birdie was very satisfying,”
said Fichardt.

Fichardt
now owns a place on a trophy that includes some of the biggest names in South
African golf. And the Sunshine Tour made its own bit of history at it live
streamed the final round for the first time, with even Rugby World Cup-winning
Springbok Schalk Brits declaring on social media he was watching the final
round on his laptop while in the FNB Stadium watching the rugby action at
Vodacom Super Hero Sunday.

Fichardt
went into the final round tied for the lead with Jacques Kruyswijk on 16-under,
and Calderon four shots adrift of them.

But
Calderon came surging through the field with a 64, and Fichardt’s own 68 saw
the title decided between these two. Kruyswijk took third place on 19-under par
with a 69.

The
victory was a timely boost for Fichardt, who admits the tribulations of having
to return to the European Tour Qualifying School last year after losing his
card took it out of him.

“I
had a tough year last year and decided not to touch a club over December. I
came out at the South African Open and was a bit rusty, and missed the cut by
one. I was thinking I hope it’s not going to be one of those years again. So to
win the week after is awesome.

“It’s
fantastic playing at home and having that support. It can get very lonely on
tour and it’s great to hear people calling your name and supporting you.”

Final
scores from the Eye of Africa PGA Championship on the par-72 Eye of Africa
Signature Golf Estate course on Sunday:

268 – Darren Fichardt 65
70 65 68 (Won on the third hole of a sudden-death playoff), Matias Calderon 70
67 67 64

269 – Jacques
Kruyswijk 67 69 64 69

271 – Thriston
Lawrence 66 66 69 70

272 – Daniel van
Tonder 67 69 66 70

273 – Jaco Ahlers 71 69
64 69

274 – MJ Viljoen 70 68
68 68, JC Ritchie 70 68 68 68

275 – Philip Eriksson 66
70 69 70, Louis de Jager 69 67 68 71

276 – Steve Surry 71 70
67 68

277 – Toby Tree 70 68 70
69, Trevor Fisher Jnr 67 70 69 71, Ulrich van den Berg 69
69 68 71, Andre Nel 71 70 65 71, Jaco Van Zyl 70 66 69
72, Bryce Easton 68 66 70 73, Jake Redman 69 67 68 73

278 – Fredrik From 71 68
70 69, Martin Rohwer 68 70 70 70

279 – Oliver Bekker 69
70 70 70

280 – James Allan 72 70
70 68, Hennie Otto 70 67 73 70, Christiaan Basson 74 67 69
70, Hennie du Plessis 72 66 71 71

281 – Jean Hugo 69 68 74
70, Tyrone Ferreira 67 69 74 71, Garrick Higgo 66 75 69 71

282 – Luke Jerling 71 70
73 68, Deon Germishuys 75 67 70 70, Victor Lange 70 71 68
73, Kyle Barker 70 67 71 74, Peter Karmis 71 68 69 74

283 – Mark Williams 70
67 76 70, Jacques Blaauw 69 67 74 73, Jean-Paul Strydom 70
70 70 73, Gavin Moynihan 67 69 72 75

284 – Juran Dreyer 71 70
73 70, Ruan de Smidt 69 67 77 71, Doug McGuigan 73 69 71
71, Callum Mowat 67 71 72 74, Toto Thimba 68 71 69 76

285 – Ruan Conradie 70
70 72 73, Neil Schietekat 73 68 71 73

286 – Bennie van der
Merwe 73 69 74 70, Hayden Griffiths 71 71 72 72

287 – James Hart du
Preez 75 67 70 75, Jake Roos 70 71 70 76, Erhard
Lambrechts 68 71 71 77

289 – Ockie Strydom 70
70 73 76, David McIntyre 69 71 71 78

290 – Teaghan Gauche 74
68 76 72, Jade Buitendag 69 70 78 73, Andrew van der
Knaap 71 69 75 75, Estiaan Conradie 69 65 79 77, Andre De
Decker 69 71 70 80

291 – Teboho Sefatsa 68
74 76 73, Dylan Naidoo 70 72 75 74, Hennie O’Kennedy 68 66
80 77, Derick Petersen 70 71 72 78

293 – Divan van den
Heever 72 67 79 75, Titch Moore 69 71 77 76

294 – Paul Boshoff 68 72
75 79

295 – Chris Swanepoel 67
69 75 84

296 – Vaughn
Groenewald 70 72 77 77

DSQ – Wilco Nienaber 71
66 68 DSQ





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