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Schwartzel finished a shot ahead of Henni du Plessis, both of whom were part of the Stinger GC squad and were victorious in the team competition at the Centurion Club; Schwartzel earns $4 million for his win and an additional $750,000 for being part of the winning team
Last updated: 06.11.22 20:19
Charl Schwarzel secured the biggest payday of his golf career by surviving a wobble in the back nine and earning a two-stroke victory in the inaugural event of the LIV Golf Invitational Series.
Schwarzel carded two over 72 at the Centurion Club to end the week seven under and two down than compatriot Henni Du Plessis, earning him the $4 million winner’s check.
The South African duo were both part of Stinger GC, who joined Branden Grace and Louis Oosthuizen to win the team competition, with the quartet receiving an additional $750,000 share of the $3 million first team prize.
Schwarzel went into the final loop three shots up and saw his lead extended when Du Plessis bogeed the sixth, with a Schwarzel birdie on the eighth that caught him the fifth turn ahead of him.
The former Masters champion hit an erratic tee shot on the par-4 12 on his way to an early double-bogey, but made a two-putt win on the next par-5 to equalize Du Plessis’ birdie before snapping on the par-4 on the 14th .a bogey made the leader drop to eight under overnight.
An excellent two-putt par from distance at par-5 15 and a clutch par-save at 16 kept Schwartzel with two to play, with a bogey on the final hole enough to win first prize nearly three times win the number he claimed for his huge success in 2011.
“To be honest, I’m relieved!” said Schwarzel. “It was tough to finish there. I made a bad mistake at 12 that put me on my backfoot and I just had to stay calm and try to get this thing in and out of my hands. I made it a little bit harder than it should have been, but I’m just proud of how I persevered and made it through [winning] it’s a great feeling.”
Grace carded a round-of-the-day 65 and finished in five-under with Peter Uihlein, while England’s Sam Horsfield finished fifth ahead of Oliver Bekker and Adrian Otaegui, while Dustin Johnson finished the week in eighth-under .
Oosthuizen and Graeme McDowell both ended the week with overs. Sergio Garcia finished the tournament with 6 overs after a 75-over in the last round, while Phil Mickelson finished his first competitive start since February with a 76-over and 10 overs.
Stinger GC won the team competition at 20 under, with the quartet 14 shots clear of the Crushers GC side of Captain Uihlein. The Majesticks GC team of Horsfield, Laurie Canter, Ian Poulter and Lee Westwood finished third with five unders.
Where are future events taking place?
Sky Sports’ Andrew Coltart believes it won’t be long before taller players’ heads turn when they see lower-ranked players making the big bucks on the LIV Golf Tour.
The inaugural event in England was the first of eight tournaments set to take place over the next few months, including five in the United States and two in Asia, with an expanded schedule then planned for years to come.
Pumpkin Ridge GC in Portland from June 30th to July 2nd and Trump National Golf Club Bedminster from July 29th to 31st are the next two events, with additional tournaments taking place in the US from September 2nd to 4th in Boston and September 16th to 31st to be held in Chicago through September 18 .
Bangkok’s Stonehill Golf Club will host October 7-9 and Royal Greens Golf Club – the venue for the Saudi International in recent years – will host the following week, with the season-ending Team Championship beginning October at Trump National Doral Miami will be held 27-30.
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