Story: Michael Vlismas
Justin Rose heads into this week’s Open Championship as the hottest player in the game at the moment. And it’s highly likely that South Africans will see one of the standout golfers of the season tee it up at Sun City in the Nedbank Golf Challenge at the end of the year.
The South African-born Rose won last week’s Scottish Open for his second victory in as many starts, lifting him to third in the world. The chances of Rose making it three wins in a row with the Open at Royal Liverpool are not out of the question. Last year Phil Mickelson won both the Scottish Open and Open.
Rose’s form has certainly put a smile on the face of Alastair Roper, the tournament director of the Nedbank Golf Challenge, who is confident the Englishman will make a sixth appearance in “Africa’s Major”.
“Since 2007 Justin has been a great supporter of the Nedbank Golf Challenge. He has always felt a special affinity for South Africa as he was born here and still has family in the country, so it’s always a good opportunity for him to come out and spend some time with them.And he made his professional breakthrough here when he won on the Sunshine Tour in 2002. It works well for us and for him, and we have no reason to believe that 2014 won’t be exactly the same,” he said.
Rose made his Nedbank Golf Challenge debut in 2007 and finished second to Trevor Immelman that year. Last year he finished tied seventh behind winner Thomas Björn.
Should Rose play again this year, he will be seeking a third English title in five years at Sun City following Lee Westwood’s triumphs in 2010 and 2011. Sun City is a Sun International Resort.