Ockie Strydom wins Alfred Dunhill for first European title

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MALELANE, South Africa — Ockie Strydom claimed his first DP World Tour title with a 2-shot victory at the Alfred Dunhill Championship in South Africa on Sunday.

Strydom made four birdies in his first five holes after the turn to seize the outright lead and finished with a 3-under 69 for 18 under par overall at Leopard Creek Country Club.

“It’s good. It’s my favorite place,” Strydom said. “I’m just happy.”

The 37-year-old South African edged Spain’s Adrian Otaegui (-16), who closed with a 68. England’s Laurie Canter (-15) was third, another stroke behind, after a superb final-round 64.

Former Open champion Louis Oosthuizen (68) finished tied for seventh at 13 under.

Strydom had a share of the lead overnight but had a roller-coaster four holes from No. 6 to No. 9, where he went birdie, bogey, birdie, double-bogey.

That double-bogey on No. 9, after finding water with his second shot, threatened to throw off his challenge. But he recovered in fine fashion by collecting back-to-back birdies on Nos. 10 and 11.

He also picked up shots at Nos. 13 and 14 and made pars all the way home.

Strydom’s breakthrough win came after he equaled the course record with a 63 in the third round at Leopard Creek. Scotland’s Scott Jamieson had set that record just a day earlier.

Strydom set a course record with a 63 at last weekend’s South African Open at the Blair Atholl Golf and Equestrian Estate in Johannesburg, where he finished in a tie for 15th.

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