Porteous claims Joburg crown to seal Open place


Haydn Porteous will make his Open debut later this year after claiming his maiden European Tour title at the Joburg Open on Sunday.

The 21-year-old shot an error-free three-under-par 69 to take victory by two shots in his home city at the Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club, a birdie at the final hole taking him to 18 under for the tournament and capping a memorable weekend.

Porteous had been in a three-way tie for the lead heading into the final round but, as Zander Lombard and Anthony Wall dropped shots, he remained consistent with seven successive pars to start the day on the East Course.

He picked up his first birdie of the day on the eighth, before adding another two in the final five holes - his precision from the fairway seeing him hit every green in regulation on his way to victory.

"Words can't describe how I feel right now, its surreal to be honest," Porteous said in the presentation ceremony.

"I have been battling with my golf for last few months, hats off to my team for the strategy and gameplan, there was a lot of sweat and tears [along the way]. I just can't get over this feeling right now.

"I had been battling with my driver for past two days but I started to hit a few fairways [today], and a lot more greens to give chance to make birdie. 

"Unfortunately the putts didn't go in, but kept the pressure low to make sure I made par."

Lombard - who also qualified for the Open - had started his final round well as he picked up two early shots on the second and sixth, but bogeys at nine, 11 and 14 saw him slip back into the chasing pack.

An important birdie at 15 was followed by his fourth of the day at the last, which moved him to 16 under and outright second place ahead of a four-way tie for third.

Wall was part of that quartet as he carded a par-72, his efforts ensuring he will join Porteous and Lombard at Royal Troon in July.