Garth Mulroy narrowly lost out on the Joburg Open title when he lost to Richard Sterne in a playoff in 2008. Then he failed to catch a runaway Charl Schwartzel in 2011. After two second-place finishes heÂs decided itÂs time for the trophy.
ÂA few years ago Charl got the better of me. Thomas Aiken and I couldnÂt keep up with him! And then a few years before that Sterne beat me in a playoff. He hit one of the best shots IÂve ever seen out of a fairway bunker, so he deserved that one,Â said Mulroy.
The 34-year-old is glad to be back in South Africa and playing at Royal Joburg, a course which suits his game.
ÂI love going back home. I think the East Course is my favourite in South Africa. ItÂs a good golf course, and IÂm going back there to play one of AfricaÂs biggest tournaments,Â he said.
MulroyÂs experience will be crucial this week, and he gave a brief masterclass on how to navigate your way around the East and West courses.
ÂYou have to drive the ball well and hit it pretty long. If youÂre not hitting good irons youÂre not going to be able to make those birdie putts. And then it has that famous Kikuyu rough, and if you end up in that around the green then youÂre going to have a bad time,Â he said.
The 2011 Sunshine Tour Order of Merit winner heads to the Â1,3-million tournament on the back of a tied-15th finish at the Omega Dubai Desert Masters. His victory at the 2011 Alfred Dunhill Championship has taught Mulroy a few things about succeeding on the big stage, and heÂs ready to take a second win.
ÂWhen youÂve got a chance youÂd like to take advantage and win. I always like playing South Africa, itÂs more relaxed and IÂve got family and friends around. They get decent crowds and thatÂs key to confidence,Â he said.