He made it into the weekend of the Alfred Dunhill Championship by making birdie on 18, and European Tour rookie Laurie Canter (right) walked away from his third round with the promise from Johann Rupert of an invitation to play in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
Canter was the 65th and last man to make the cut at Leopard Creek after the second round with his one-over-par 73, and, with play in the third round taking place in two-balls, 11-time Leopard Creek club champion Rurik Gobel’s services were volunteered as a playing partner and marker.
Gobel is also a board member of the Sunshine Tour, and, off a three-handicap, can more than hold his own on the course where he has had so much success – even if he was playing off the tips when he accompanied Canter.
The professional signed for a one-under-par 71 in his third round, while the club champion carded 77 – even making a par on the difficult par-three seventh, which had been the hardest hole on the course for the first two rounds.
Gobel also made three birdies – on nine, 11 and 18, even hitting his approach on 18 inside Canter’s. But he didn’t match his best-ever score on the course: “I shot a 66 here once, but I was much younger,” he said.
Canter gained his European Tour card earlier this month, winning the Qualifying School First Stage at Frilford Heath, coming fourth at the Second Stage and then taking the 20th card at the Final Stage, enduring a nerve-wracking final round to secure a place on the 2016 Race to Dubai.
Prior to that, he won the South African Amateur Championship, paying his own way out here by persuading his parents to match his earnings from working at a nine-hole course over the road for his home. And, later that year, he also played in The Open Championship.
“It was unbelievable, really,” said Canter of his round with Gobel. “And then Mr Rupert said he would invite me to the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. That’s pretty cool.”