Golf

Fichardt wins Platinum Classic

2009-10-31 15:31
Winner (File)
Mooinooi - Darren Fichardt birdied the 18th hole on the 6 250 metre par 72 Mooinooi Golf Club course on Saturday to snatch the R550 000 Platinum Classic from under the nose of Titch Moore.

Fichardt finished on 15-under 201 after his closing 66 to defeat Moore by one shot.

Moore had opened out a three-stroke lead going into the 16th, but got a flyer with his punched nine-iron from 147 yards out and landed behind some trees over the green. He took two more shots to get onto the green his two putts saw Fichardt draw level after the latter birdied 17.

Fichardt then hit his approach on 18 to within 12 feet, just off the green, and sank his putt to make life very tough for Moore unless he was able to birdie 17.

He wasn’t, and his miracle 25-footer for birdie on 18 to force the playoff just missed.

That gave Fichardt his third title on the 2009 Sunshine Tour – he won the Nashua Masters and the Vodacom Business Origins of Golf Selborne – and he joined Jaco van Zyl and Brandon Pieters as members of the three-time club.

“I’ve been hitting the ball unbelievably this whole week, and it was just a question of making putts,” he said.

“In the end, though, I was lucky, with Titch making double there on 16 and a par on 17 where I would have expected him to make a birdie, and that left the door open for me on the 18th,” he said.

“There was a little bit of mud on my ball ahead of that putt on 18, so I didn’t quite know what was going to happen. But it went in, and that was awesome,” he added.

Fichardt said he would take confidence into the summer swing of the Sunshine Tour, which now only weeks away, but more importantly for him, into the final stage of the European Tour Qualifying School in late November.

“I’m feeling as good as I’ve ever felt, so I’m keen to get my career back to where it was,” he said. He won twice on the European Tour in 2001 and 2003, in addition to his nine titles on the Sunshine Tour

Overnight leader Alan McLean battled his was to an even-par 72 to finish in a share of second with Grant Muller, who closed with a five-under 67.

There was a group of five players on 12-under, including Branden Grace, who overcame an opening nine of three-over to finish one-under for his final round.

Defending champion Thomas Aiken was in a group of five players who finished on 11-under for a share of 10th.

Scores after the final round of the R550 000 Platinum Classic played on the 6 250-metre par 72 Mooinooi Golf Club course (RSA unless specified):

201 - Darren Fichardt 70 65 66

202 - Titch Moore 65 68 69

203 - Grant Muller 66 70 67, Alan McLean (SCO) 65 66 72

204 - Steve Basson 71 67 66, Adilson da Silva (BRA) 67 70 67, Ryan Cairns (ZIM) 67 70 67, Teboho Sefatsa 68 67 69, Branden Grace 66 67 71

205 - Trevor Fisher Jnr 67 70 68, Warren Abery 65 72 68, Jbe' Kruger 63 73 69, Thomas Aiken 67 69 69, Doug McGuigan 66 69 70

206 - Shaun Norris 68 73 65, Danie van Niekerk (Jnr) 69 69 68, Oliver Bekker 65 72 69, Jean Hugo 66 69 71

207 - Mark Murless 74 67 66, Nic Henning 65 72 70, Michiel Bothma 68 67 72

208 - Neil Schietekat 70 70 68, Andre Cruse 71 66 71, Vaughn Groenewald 70 67 71

209 - Josh Cunliffe 69 71 69, Bradford Vaughan 70 70 69

210 - David Hewan 69 72 69, Louis de Jager 70 71 69, Alex Haindl 76 64 70, Marc Cayeux (ZIM) 71 69 70, Albert Pistorius 69 71 70, Brett Liddle 68 71 71, Divan van den Heever 72 67 71, Merrick Bremner 72 65 73

211 - Dean Lambert 69 72 70

212 - Chris Swanepoel 70 69 73, Garry Hill 68 71 73                                                  

214 - Neil Cheetham (ENG) 71 70 73, Ryan Tipping 69 72 73

215 - Keenan Davidse 74 67 74

217 - Christiaan Basson 69 70 78

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