Published : 2013-12-15 19:07
Updated : 2013-12-15 19:07
DURBAN, South Africa (AP) ― Dawie van der Walt shot a 4-under 66 Saturday to win the Nelson Mandela Championship by two shots, giving the tournament a South African victory in a week when the country bids farewell to its former president.
Van der Walt finished with a three-round total of 15-under 195 as the sun eventually shone on the final day of the rain-shortened event. It was his second European Tour victory. England’s Matthew Baldwin (68) and Spain’s Jorge Campillo (68) were tied for second.
Even before the rain disrupted the first two days, organizers had changed the schedule ensure the tournament didn’t run over into Sunday out of respect for the state funeral of Mandela, the South African anti-apartheid leader who died last week.
“It’s making you kind of part of history, winning the Nelson Mandela at this time when it’s sad for everyone and everyone’s mourning and tomorrow’s the big day,” Van der Walt said, wearing a black ribbon on his cap. “It obviously means a lot and can be something that I can keep close to my heart forever.”
Van der Walt lifted a trophy that depicts an image of Mandela surrounded by children and also won a painting bearing the signature of South Africa’s most famous figure. The tournament donated money to one of Mandela’s charities, a children’s hospital that bears his name.