Cape Town - South Africa's top golfers have had a stellar 2017 European Tour winning seven titles and seeing several players climb the world golf rankings.
Those SA victors include: Brandon Stone (Alfred Dunhill Championship), Darren Fichardt (Joburg Open), Dean Burmester (Tshwane Open), Dylan Frittelli (Lyoness Open), Haydn Porteous (Czech Masters), Branden Grace (Nedbank Golf Challenge) and Frittelli (Mauritius Open).
They have particularly enjoyed success at home in European Tour events - four of the six events in South Africa in the 2017 season were won by locals.
South Africa's biggest climber in the rankings was Erik van Rooyen, who graduated onto the European Tour in November and cemented a spot in the Open Championship next year by finishing in the top three at the Joburg Open earlier this month.
READ: SA pair seal 2018 Open Championship spots
Van Rooyen jumped a massive 494 places in the rankings - from 636th to 142nd - making him the eighth-highest ranked golfer from South Africa
Meanwhile, Frittelli, who clinched two European Tour titles this year, moved up 98 places to be placed at No 54 in the world.
Frittelli needs to get into the top 50 by March 25, 2018 to earn a spot in the Masters at Augusta National.
Rankings: Top 20 - SA
The South African Open will be the first tournament of the 2018 calendar year on the European Tour, starting from January 11-14 at the Glendower Golf Club.
The 8 highest South African climbers on the World Golf Ranking in 2017, according to Golf Digest SA:
Erik van Rooyen - 636 > 142 (494 places)
Oliver Bekker - 533 > 271 (262)
Haydn Porteous - 308 > 179 (129)
Shaun Norris - 288 > 162 (126)
Darren Fichardt - 312 > 194 (118)
Dylan Frittelli - 152 > 54 (98)
Jbe Kruger - 332 > 255 (77)
Dean Burmester - 189 > 136 (53)