Cape Town – South Africa’s Erik van Rooyen produced
a sensational finish to earn a one-shot lead at the European Tour’s
Scandinavian International on Saturday.
The 29-year-old from Cape Town fired a six-under 64 for a
13-under-par total at Hills Golf & Sports Club to put himself in
pole position heading into Sunday’s final round in Gothenburg.
Van Rooyen was only one under par for the day after his first 12
holes, but finished like a house on fire, birdieing five of the last six
down the stretch to surge into the lead.
“It was a little scrappy on the front so I didn’t feel like it was
going to be a 29,” he said of his impressive finish.
“I was quite
surprised and really happy.”
While Van Rooyen has never won on the European Tour, he has been
getting increasingly close this year, with five top-10s and two
runner-up finishes in the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters and the Hassan
II Golf Trophy.
He also gave further notice of his talent with a top-10 finish in the 2019 PGA Championship at Bethpage Black.
Lying one shot behind Van Rooyen in a tie for second place are
Australian Wade Ormsby, China’s Ashun Wu and Matthew Fitzpatrick of
Fitzpatrick held a two-shot lead at the start of the day, but a one-under 69 wasn’t good enough to hold on to it.
Ormsby and Wu shot rounds of 65 and 67 respectively to keep themselves in the hunt.
Sharing fifth place two shots further back are South African Dean
Burmester, who rose 27 places up the leaderboard with a 62, Welshman
Jamie Donaldson (63), Ireland’s Gavin Moynihan (64), Frenchman Alexander
Levy (66) and local favourite Henrik Stenson, who started the day in
second but had to settle for a 69.