Van Tonder pulling away at Sun City

Oct 30, 2020 | Featured, Sunshine Tour

The rest of the field must be getting heartily sick of the view of Daniel van Tonder they have been having as he threatens to run away for a fourth victory in the season after the third round on Friday of the Sunshine Tour’s Investec Royal Swazi Open at Gary Player Country Club.

Van Tonder carded the best round of the day, with his five-under-par 67 bringing him 11 points in the modified stableford system which allocates five points to an eagle, two for a birdie, none for a par, minus one for a bogey and minus three for a double. He made six birdies and a bogey during the third round, but missed out on a third consecutive eagle on the 18th – the ninth for those who know the course in its Nedbank Golf Challenge guise. That took him to 38 points for the week.

His closest pursuers are Neil Schietekat in second on 24 points and Anton Haig and JC Ritchie on 22 each in a share of third. Schietekat shot a 69 for seven points, Haig made six birdies and four bogeys for his 70 and seven points, while Ritchie’s four birdies and two bogeys for a 70 yielded eight points.

A 14-point edge going into the final round plays to Van Tonder’s strengths of hitting lots of fairways and greens while being naturally an aggressive player, as well as into his super-confident mindset after three wins in six starts since the resumption of action on the Sunshine Tour after the Covid-19 enforced hiatus.

It will be tough for anyone to chase him down.

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