YOUNG GUNS DOMINATE CHASE TO INVESTEC CUP
he young guns of the Sunshine Tour dominated the Chase to the Investec Cup in 2015/16, so it was appropriate that the nal tournament at Millvale Private Retreat should come down to a nal round shootout between two of the tour’s most promising youngsters, Haydn Porteous and Brandon Stone.
The 21-year-old Porteous ultimately claimed the Investec Cup title by a shot from then 22-year-old Stone, after the lead had gone back and forth between them over the closing holes.
Unfortunately for the tournament, and TV viewers at home, neither of them had a chance of winning the R4 million victory bonus which had gone to the overall winner of the Chase to Investec Cup, Dean Burmester, before anyone had teed up at Millvale.
If there had been R4 million at stake as they came down the 72nd hole tied for the lead, it would have made for incredible drama. As it was, with the tournament title at stake, and R250 000 on line for the winner, nothing for second place, the nervousness being shown by Porteous and Stone was palpable. Porteous had missed a short par putt on 17 to lose the lead, and Stone bogeyed 18 after a poor drive.
Burmester had the bonus pool rst prize wrapped up prior to the tourna-
Tment, putting an impressive stamp on a 12-month period where he set the tour alight with his exciting play and pursuit of birdies. Between his victory in the Zimbabwe Open in April 2015, and third-place nish at Millvale, the 26-year-old from Bloemfontein earned himself R7.2 million, not a bad return for playing on the local tour.
For next year’s nale the Sunshine Tour need to build in a system where the overall winner of the Chase to the Investec Cup cannot be decided before the season is done. It needs to be settled in the closing tournament, not beforehand. The PGA Tour did this with their FedEx Cup following Vijay Singh’s triumph in 2008 when he had it wrapped up before the season-ending Tour Championship.
All four rounds of the Chase nale were this year played at the exclusive Millvale estate for the rst time, and the eld was also trimmed from 30 to 16 players. The long-hitting Burmester had the 36-hole lead on 135 (70-65), by one from Stone, but Porteous took it away from him with a 68 in Friday’s third round, with Stone remaining one shot behind.
Millvale was a di cult test for the Sunshine Tour standouts. Porteous had 18 birdies and one eagle in the 72 holes, but also 8 bogeys. Stone had 21 birdies and 6 bogeys.
In the Ladies Investec Cup, Bertine Strauss won the 54-hole closing tournament at Millvale by ve shots from Rebecca Hudson, earning herself R100 000, and Lee-Anne Pace won the overall Chase to Investec Cup, and R400 000.