Lee Westwood’s 62 Rocks Sun City

by Michael Vlismas on
Lee WestwoodLee Westwood has made a strong bid to become only the sixth player in Nedbank Golf Challenge history to successfully defend his title following a brilliant 62 in Saturday’s third round at the Gary Player Country Club.  In a third round delayed for an hour-and-a-half due to inclement weather, it was Westwood who produced the flashes of brilliance reminiscent of his triumph here last year.  With his bogey-free round of 10 under, the Englishman climbed to 16 under par for the tournament and will take a seven-stroke lead into Sunday’s final round.  “You never see a 10-under-par 62 coming, but I certainly played well enough the last couple of days to shoot this kind of score. You’re always delighted with a good round on this golf course – you know you’ve played well,” said Westwood.
His nearest challengers are Robert Karlsson and Graeme McDowell on nine under.  Westwood started his round with three birdies in his first four holes, made three birdies over the turn from the ninth, and then went on a run of four consecutive birdies from the 14th to see him in line to add his name to the list of players who have successfully defended their titles here.
Seve Ballesteros was the first to do so in 1983 and 1984, followed by David Frost in 1989 and 1990, Nick Price in 1997 and 1998, Ernie Els in 1999 and 2000, and Jim Furyk in 2005 and 2006.  “I didn’t miss many fairways and I played the par fives really well. I also had four good eagle chances and didn’t make any of them. So I’ve been playing like this all week, but I’ve just been waiting for one or two 20-footers to go in. I certainly felt like I had a 62 in me,” Westwood said.  He won by eight shots last year, but Westwood says he’s not going to get ahead of himself with one round still remaining.  “I’ll just keep playing my own game and take the golf course as it comes. I’m hitting the ball great and hopefully I’ll roll a few in in the final round.  Last year was obviously a fantastic year, but I don’t want to compare the two. Hopefully I can go out on the final day and play well again. It doesn’t matter by how many shots I win – people don’t count. They just remember that you won it.”
Such was Westwood’s confidence on Saturday that the weather delay had no impact on him at all. In fact, it seemed to inspire him.  “What crossed my mind when the siren sounded? I thought it was a good time for lunch,” he said of the interruption. “They do a great stir fry in the Player’s Lounge. I was three under when I went in for lunch and shot seven under when I came back out. I was just trying to stay in my own little world and keep hitting good shots.”
South Africa’s Charl Schwartzel was looking for a big day and started strong when he nearly holed his bunker shot for eagle on the par-five second, with the ball hitting the flagstick and leaving him a tap-in for birdie. But he went on to sign for a 68, placing him at six under going into the final day.
Charl Schwartzel

Charl Schwartzel

South Africa’s Charl Schwartzel was looking for a big day and started strong when he nearly holed his bunker shot for eagle on the par-five second, with the ball hitting the flagstick and leaving him a tap-in for birdie. But he went on to sign for a 68, placing him at six under going into the final day.

One Response to Lee Westwood’s 62 Rocks Sun City

  1. Steve Watson says:

    If you consider where Lee Westwood was 3 or 4 years ago, you realise the work this lad’s put in to get back to the very top of golf. Golfing Genius is the only way to describe Lee Westwood, those yank’s are shitting themselves right now they will never get the Rider Cup back.

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