De Jonge pockets $59 000 at US Open

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ZIMBABWE’S Brendon de Jonge might have struggled in the final round of the 114th US Open Championship at Pinehurst Resort, but he still managed to finish as the highest-placed African in the star-studded field for the year’s second major golf championship.

DANIEL NHAKANISO
GOLF REPORTER OF THE YEAR

After starting the final round in a tie for 10th place, de Jonge found the going tough, carding a final round of 76 to finish in a tie for 28th on the leaderboard on seven-over-par 287 to earn himself $59 588 for his efforts.

However, de Jonge will be the first to admit that he could have had a bigger payday this week after his solid start following round of 6 and 70 in the first two rounds.

In fact in the early stages of the third round of the lucrative tournament de Jonge found himself within reasonable striking distance of the lead and his first PGA victory before his struggles started. The consolation for de Jonge was, however, the fact that he was the top placed African on the leaderboard at the conclusion of the tournament.

South African legend Ernie Els was the next best-placed African on the leaderboard after recovering from a difficult start with a final round of 72 to leave him on eight-over par and in a tie for 35th.

Louis Oosthuizen also from South Africa fired a three-under-par 67 to finish his tournament on nine-over par and in a tie for 40th with his compatriot Garth Mulroy.

Another South African Retief Goosen took a share of position 45 on the leaderboard while his compatriot Charl Schwartzel narrowly missed the cut after the first 36-holes. Africa’s flag bearer at the US Open was however without a doubt, de Jonge, who only last week had been honoured at the inaugural Zimbabwe Golf Awards by being named the country’s International Golf Ambassador.

Aiming for his first top 10 finish in a major championship, de Jonge struggled early on in his final round after making three bogeys in the first four holes.
A birdie on the par-five fifth was followed up by four other bogeys on the back nine as the 33-year old Zimbabwean’s undid his fine start in the first two rounds.

Meanwhile, Germany’s Martin Kaymer led from start to finish on his way winning the 2014 US Open and his efforts were rewarded with a very large winner’s prize money of $1.62 million from the $9 million prize fund for the tournament.

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