Golf

Min Woo Lee and Dean Burmester claim victories in Australia and South Africa

Dean Burmester
Dean Burmester Dean Burmester

MIN Woo Lee overcame a nervy start to win his third DP World Tour title with a three-shot victory at the Fortinet Australian PGA Championship.

The 25-year-old Aussie's three-stroke overnight lead evaporated in the first two holes at Royal Brisbane after a bogey-par start saw Japan's Rikuya Hoshino draw level on 16 under after two opening birdies.

But Lee's three birdies in four holes from the fourth - where he came within 18 inches of a hole in one after Joaquin Niemann had earlier aced the hole on his way to a fifth-placed finish - restored his advantage after his partner played that stretch in level par.

A 55-yard chip-in eagle at the ninth put him four ahead at the turn and despite a scrappy back nine of three bogeys and two birdies Hoshino could not take advantage as he closed with seven successive pars to finish 17 under.

Lee's four-shot lead heading to the last saw him don a chef's hat - he has adopted the tagline 'Let him cook' for many of his social media posts - and orchestrate a synchronised crowd thunderclap at this week's established party hole before bogeying the 18th to sign for a 68 and a 20-under total.

"I've always thought I could win, but it took a while to get over the hump. Two wins in the last month or so .... really proud of it," said Lee, who won the Asian Tour's Macau Open recently.

Lee now heads to next week's Australian Open, a joint-tournament format featuring men's and women's fields, where his two-time major winner sister Minjee Lee will be playing the same course in Sydney.

Tom McKibbin carded rounds of 68 and 75 over the weekend and finished well down the field.

South Africa's Dean Burmester carded a superb closing 64 to win the Joburg Open as overnight leader Thriston Lawrence suffered a costly collapse.

Burmester began the day three shots off the pace but took the lead with the first of his six birdies on the fifth as Lawrence made a nightmare start at Houghton Golf Club.

Lawrence ran up a double bogey on the second and dropped shots on the third and fifth on his way to a final round of 75, which dropped him into a tie for seventh.

Burmester's bogey-free 64 saw him finish on 18 under par, three shots ahead of compatriot Darren Fichardt, with defending champion Dan Bradbury another two strokes behind.

Fichardt and Bradbury also shot 64 to join Burmester in securing the three places available in next year's Open Championship at Royal Troon.

"We recently bought a house in Florida and were busy moving so there wasn't much time to prepare for this event," Burmester, who plays mainly on the LIV Golf circuit, said.

"But when I landed here I did some great preparation in the practice rounds and that set the tone for me. I felt comfortable on the golf course.

"It sounds pretty cool to be the Joburg Open champion. I've been playing this event for so long and to win it is amazing. That was my goal coming home.

"I hadn't won this year and have been playing well, so to come here and win a tournament in my home country in front of my home fans with some of my family here is very special.

"I knew what was at stake for me. My Sunshine Tour category was running out and the only way I could keep my card and keep supporting the Sunshine Tour was to win.

"That was my goal coming back here. I'm proud of myself, and I'm proud to be the Joburg Open champion."