Cape Town - Justin Harding will make a strong push to become the first South African
golfer to win the Asian Tour’s Habitat for Humanity Standings, starting
with this week’s AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open at the Four Seasons Golf Club
Mauritius at Anahita.
Harding is currently third on the Asian Tour money list following a
breakthrough season in which he has won twice.
The South African has been
in incredible form in 2018, also winning twice on the Sunshine Tour and
currently leading the Order of Merit.
The previous highest finish on the Asian Tour money list since 2004 by
any South African was Anton Haig who finished third on the money list in 2007.
Harding will be the highest ranked player on the Asian Tour money list
at this week’s AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open, which is tri-sanctioned by the
Asian Tour, Sunshine Tour and European Tour.
Harding has already made Asian Tour history this season by becoming the
first player to win twice in his first two starts on the Tour when he won the
Bank BRI Indonesian Open and then the Royal Cup. And with three tournaments
left on the Asian Tour’s season, Harding still has a realistic chance of
finishing top of the Tour’s money list.
Indian golfer Shubhankar Sharma currently leads the way on the
Habitat for Humanity Standings with earnings of $755 994. Harding is $331
817 behind Sharma in third place.
But Sharma will not be playing in this week’s AfrAsia Bank Mauritius
Open nor the following week’s South African Open hosted by the City of Joburg,
which is also tri-sanctioned by the Sunshine Tour, Asian Tour and European
If Harding wins in Mauritius and Johannesburg, he will take over the top
spot on the standings from Sharma. And that's not completely unrealistic given that the South
African has already achieved back-to-back wins twice in 2018 on the Sunshine
Tour and the Asian Tour.
“The players on the Sunshine Tour will be gunning for my number one spot
on the Order of Merit and it’s very important that I play well here. It’s an
added bonus that the event is also sanctioned by the Asian Tour so I’ll also
improve my position on the Habitat for Humanity Standings if I do well,”
Harding said ahead of Thursday’s first round of the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius
“Anahita is very wind dependent. The last time I played there, the winds
were blowing at 65km/h and I was nearly blown off the golf course. It’s a long
golf course and if the wind picks up, it will be very challenging.”