Date: December 15, 2013
Author: Alex Fisher, Omnisport

Van der Walt takes emotional title in Durban

Dawie van der Walt produced a stunning four-under par final round of 66 to win the Nelson Mandela Championship by two shots on Saturday.

The 30-year-old held his nerve on home soil to par the final three holes and secure his second win on the European Tour with 15 under overall, with England's Matthew Baldwin and Spain's Jorge Campillo joint runners-up.

Van der Walt started the day with his first bogey of the tournament on the second, but he soon found his rhythm to card three birdies in the following four holes.

An eagle three at the 12th followed by two further birdies saw him edge ahead and become the first South African to win the rain-affected tournament in Durban a day before Mandela's funeral.

"It's obviously really special, making you a part of history," he said. "Winning the Nelson Mandela (Championship) at this time, when it's sad for everyone, everyone is mourning and (Sunday is) the big day, it means a lot and it's something I can keep close to my heart for ever.

"I haven't been in that good form, I've been struggling with an injury, so this is almost overwhelming."

After being reduced to three rounds due to a water-logged course, some players had to finish their second round on Saturday before immediately beginning their final 18 holes.

Daniel Brooks – who led at the end of the second round – had a nightmare as he fell from the lead after a six-over 76 to drop to a tie for 11th place overall.

The Englishman carded four bogeys and a double-bogey on the front nine before coming home in even par, while defending champions Scott Jamieson finished tied for 23rd place.