Sunshine Tour

Bremner triumphs in Swaziland

2013-06-02 16:41
Merrick Bremner (Gallo Images)

Swaziland - Merrick Bremner hung on for a wire to wire victory at the Lombard Insurance Classic on Sunday, carding a final-round 71 at Royal Swazi Sun Country Club to win by two strokes on 17 under.

“It’s all surreal at the moment and hasn’t really sunk in yet. It’s just all happening too quickly,” said Bremner.

Bremner took his maiden victory at the Lombard Insurance Classic back in 2008, a moment that launched his career. His win this week has a similar significance for the 27-year-old, who moves to 22nd on the Sunshine Tour Order of Merit.

“It’s been five years since I’ve been in the winners’ circle, so the win is great. I’ve been close a couple of times over the last few years and thankfully I managed to pull it off today,” he said.

His third career title was founded on two incredible rounds before the 36-hole cut. On Friday he carded nine-under-par 63 to set the pace in Swaziland and kept the momentum rolling with a Saturday 65.

Starting Sunday on 16-under-par and four strokes ahead was daunting for the big-hitting Els Club professional. The nerves affected him at the start and he carded bogeys at both the first and second holes, which opened the door for his chasers and set in motion a cat-and-mouse Sunday finale.

Jean Hugo was the first to move and birdied four of his last five holes on the front nine. He turned level with Bremner, the pair on 15-under-par.

Hugo stumbled into the back nine with a bogey at the 11th and failed to recover, making another bogey at the 15th before reaching the clubhouse in sole third on 13-under-par.

PH McIntyre picked up the chase with two birdies around the turn and shot a Sunday 67, but it was not enough to catch Bremner, who birdied the 17th and 18th for a two-shot victory.

“It was a tussle going into the back nine,” said Bremner.

“But Jean slipped at 15 and that gave some room to breathe. I got to 17 and PH had made birdie, but luckily I made birdie there and then again at the last.”

McIntyre’s 15-under-par total was worth sole second, but he’s set his sights on a victory this season.

Final round scores from the Lombard Insurance Classic Sunshine Tour event held at the Royal Swazi Sun Country Club on Sunday (RSA unless otherwise specified):

199 - Merrick Bremner 63 65 71

201 - PH McIntyre 68 66 67

203 - Jean Hugo 69 63 71

204 - Justin Harding 72 67 65

205 - Jacques Blaauw 69 69 67, Toto Thimba (Jnr) 65 68 72

206 - Jacques Kruyswijk 69 69 68, Danie van Tonder 69 68 69, Warren Abery 66 68 72

207 - Alex Haindl 68 70 69, Ulrich van den Berg 69 67 71

208 - James Kingston 69 70 69, Oliver Bekker 71 70 67, Jake Roos 74 64 70, Dean Burmester 69 65 74

209 - Callie Swart 70 70 69, Drikus Bruyns 70 71 68, Adilson Da Silva (BRA) 71 66 72

210 - Jake Redman 70 70 70, Desne van den Bergh 67 74 69, Charl Coetzee 67 71 72, Bradford Vaughan 72 69 69, Grant Muller 68 68 74

211 - Lyle Rowe 73 67 71, Morne Buys 69 71 71, Chris Erasmus 70 69 72, Peter Karmis 70 70 71, Andrew Curlewis 67 73 71,Ruan de Smidt 67 71 73, Wynand Dingle 73 68 70, Graham van der Merwe 68 73 70, Brandon Pieters 67 69 75

212 - Thabo Maseko 68 72 72, Steven Ferreira 73 67 72, Neil Schietekat 65 72 75

213 - Divan van den Heever 70 71 72, Juan Langeveld 72 69 72, Vaughn Groenewald 71 70 72

214 - Tyrone Ferreira 71 70 73, Desvonde Botes 71 66 77, Mark Murless 68 74 72, Keenan Davidse 73 69 72, Anthony Michael 71 71 72

216 - Allan Versfeld 69 70 77, Lindani Ndwandwe 71 71 74

217 - Ryan Cairns (ZIM) 69 71 77, Riekus Nortje 70 71 76

218 - Teboho Sefatsa 71 71 76

219 - Matthew Carvell 70 72 77

223 - Sipho Bujela 74 68 81

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