Paisley wins by three strokes with 21-under 267
Chris Paisley wins his maiden title on the European Tour at the BMW SA Open hosted by the City of Ekurhuleni by three strokes with a bogey-free six-under 66 for the day, over the South African Branden Grace, the closest man to him on the board at 18-under 272.
— The European Tour (@EuropeanTour) January 14, 2018
Paisley started the final round with a shot lead and shortly was overtook by Grace with an explosive start posting a birdie on the first, and an eagle on the second. Grace run was halted by a double-bogey on the par-3 5th, but soon he recovered with another eagle on the par-5 13th, not affecting the charged up Paisley.
Grace, an eight-time winner on the European Tour found the rough and the bunker at the par three sixth as the World Number 289 settled for a par, but when the home favorite carded a two-putt double-bogey, Paisley moved two strokes clear.
Grace posted four-under 68 for the day consisting two eagles, three birdies, and a bogey on the par-4 12th.
Paisley extended his lead to three-strokes when he holed a difficult right-to-left putt for birdie on the seventh, where Grace managed only to par it.
Paisley started his back nine with more positivity and drained an eight-feet putt for the birdie on the 10th, and now he was leading by four-strokes at 19-under par.
Paisley posted his 23rd birdie of the tournament at the 13th to move to 20-under par.
Grace aimed to become only the second player to win South Africa’s three most prestigious event, behind the host Ernie Els, recovered with a bogey, followed by an eagle on the 13th, and moving up to 17-under with a birdie on the 15th, the 16th hole saw him reducing Paisley’s lead to three-strokes with an approach shot on the same, moving to 18-under.
Following the South African for a third position on the board is another South African JC Ritchie at 16-under 272, with today’s round of 7-under 65 consisting two eagles, six birdies, and three bogeys.
Tied for the fourth place are Scott Vincent, Jacques Kruyswijk, and Jacques Blaauw at 14-under 274.
First-round leader Chase Koepka finished the event for a T-7th finish on the board at 13-under 275 and joined by Renato Paratore, second-round co-leader Adrian Saddier, Darren Fichardt, and Charlie Ford.
The tournament’s host Ernie Els stood T-31st at eight-under 280 with a final round of three-under 69 and is joined by Soomin Lee and Richard Bland, who dropped 21 spots today with his round of 1-over 73.