PGA Tour

Grace returns to RBC Heritage for title defence

2017-04-12 12:32
Branden Grace (AP)

Cape Town - South Africa's Branden Grace returns to the famed Harbour Town Golf Links in Hilton Head Island this week to defend his RBC Heritage title.

Grace, 28, won by two strokes last year over Scotland's Russell Knox and England's Luke Donald to secure his first PGA Tour title, finishing with a 9-under par total of 275.

This year Grace will be joined in the field by South African compatriots Ernie Els and Tyrone van Aswegen.

"This is one of those places where you just fall in love the first time you come," Grace told Fox Sports website.

"Man, it's good to be back.

"It's been a tough year for (tournament organisers), and you can see how they've really pulled together and got (the course) back to being one of the best stops on tour."

The world No 22-ranked golfer is looking to secure his second plaid jacket a week after his 3-over par, tied 25th finish at the Masters.

An interesting fact is that Grace's RBC Heritage victory in 2016 came off the back of a Masters missed cut.

Grace has proven a perfect fit for the Harbour Town Golf Links course, finishing T7 and gaining a win in his first two trips.

His form is not at its peak at the moment, but he's still among the favourites heading into this week's tournament.

At stake this week is a total purse of $6.5 million (R82m), with $1.17 million (R23m) and 500 FedEx Cup points going to the winner.

Grace is paired in the opening round on Thursday with Australia's Marc Leishman and Canada's Adam Hadwin (18:50 SA time), while Els tees off at 14:10 and Van Aswegen at 14:30.

Read more on:    pga tour  |  branden grace  |  golf
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