Charl hits fairways

CHARL Schwartzel has predicted that this could be a big year for him after winning the Joburg Open by six shots at the Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club on Sunday.

CHARL Schwartzel has predicted that this could be a big year for him after winning the Joburg Open by six shots at the Royal Johannesburg and Kensington Golf Club on Sunday.

In so doing he broke into the top 50 in the world rankings.

Schwartzel went into the final day four strokes clear of the field and closed with a 66 on the East Course to win on 23 under par for his second consecutive victory in South Africa after his triumph in the Africa Open.

South Africa's Keith Horne and Northern Ireland's Darren Clarke shared second place on 17 under with respective rounds of 64 and 68.

"I think I overdid myself a bit," Schwartzel said of his memorable two weeks.

If he retains his place in the top 50 in the world, he also has a date with the first major of the year - the Masters in April.

"It's very exciting. It's a lot to take in right now. I'm very happy to be in the position I am in," Schwartzel said.

"If I keep going like this, it could be a big year for me. With the confidence I've got right now, I pretty much feel like I can win anything. And the way I played this week, I don't need to stand back for anyone.

"I've just got to treat the big events like this. It's just the score that counts at the end of the day." - Michael Vlismas

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