Branden Grace

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Branden Grace
— Golfer —
Personal information
Full name Branden John Grace
Born (1988-05-20) 20 May 1988 (age 26)
Pretoria, South Africa
Height 1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)
Weight 78 kg (172 lb; 12.3 st)
Nationality  South Africa
Residence George, South Africa
Career
Turned professional 2007
Current tour(s) European Tour
Sunshine Tour
Former tour(s) Challenge Tour
Professional wins 7
Number of wins by tour
European Tour 5
Sunshine Tour 4
Best results in major championships
Masters Tournament T18: 2013
U.S. Open T51: 2012
The Open Championship T36: 2014
PGA Championship T46: 2014
Achievements and awards
Sunshine Tour
Order of Merit winner
2012

Branden John Grace (born 20 May 1988) is a professional golfer from South Africa who currently plays on both the European Tour and Sunshine Tour. In 2012, he became the first player in the history of the European Tour to win his first four European Tour events in the same year.[1]

Amateur career[edit]

Grace was born in Pretoria. As an amateur he participated in the Ernie Els and Fancourt Foundation. He won the South African Amateur Stroke Play Championship in 2006. He turned professional in 2007.

Professional career[edit]

Early years[edit]

Grace played on the Challenge Tour in 2007 which is Europe's second tier tour. He only played in eight events but recorded two top-ten finishes. In 2008 he played on the Challenge Tour and the Sunshine Tour. He finished 35th on the Challenge Tour's Order of Merit while recording three top-10 finishes including finishing in a tie for second at the Ypsilon Golf Challenge. He then earned his European Tour card for 2009 through qualifying school.

In 2009, Grace struggled on the European Tour but finished in a tie for second at the Africa Open on the Sunshine Tour, behind winner Retief Goosen. He finished in the top 10 in seven of the nine Sunshine Tour events that he played in en route to an 11th place finish on the Order of Merit. He picked up his first professional win in 2010 at the Coca-Cola Charity Championship on the Sunshine Tour. In 2011 he finished 24th on the Challenge Tour's Order of Merit while recording five top-10 finishes. He also finished 7th on the Sunshine Tour's Order of Merit. He went back to qualifying school to earn his European Tour card for 2012.

2012: Breakthrough season[edit]

In January he won the Joburg Open which was co-sanctioned by the European Tour and the Sunshine Tour. He won by one stroke over Jamie Elson. He then won the Volvo Golf Champions the following week to make it back-to-back European Tour victories, beating his veteran compatriots Ernie Els and Retief Goosen in a playoff with a birdie on the first hole. Grace became the first player since Fred Couples in 1995 to follow his first victory with another consecutively. As a result, Grace moved inside the world's top 100 in the Official World Golf Ranking.

On 22 April, Grace won his third tournament on the European Tour when he won the Volvo China Open. Only two players have won three European Tour titles in a single season at a younger age, Seve Ballesteros did it three times between 1977 and 1980, and Sandy Lyle did it in 1979. Grace also became only the third South African to win three times in a single season, joining Ernie Els and Retief Goosen. He also became only the second player in European Tour history to win three times in the season after graduating from qualifying school.[2]

In September, Grace captured his third Sunshine Tour title at the Vodacom Origins of Golf Final. On 7 October, Grace won his fourth European Tour title and fifth worldwide title of 2012 at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.[1] He broke the scoring record at the tournament to win at 22 under par, two strokes clear of Thorbjørn Olesen. His record total included a European Tour record equaling 60 at Kingsbarns during the first round. Grace moved to third in the Race to Dubai and also to a career high 37th in the Official World Golf Ranking. Grace capped off a highly successful 2012 season by winning the Sunshine Tour Order of Merit.

Professional wins (7)[edit]

European Tour wins (5)[edit]

No. Date Tournament Winning score Margin of
victory
Runner(s)-up
1 15 Jan 2012 Joburg Open^ –17 (67-66-65-72=270) 1 stroke England Jamie Elson
2 22 Jan 2012 Volvo Golf Champions –12 (68-66-75-71=280) Playoff South Africa Ernie Els, South Africa Retief Goosen
3 22 Apr 2012 Volvo China Open* –21 (67-67-64-69=267) 3 strokes Belgium Nicolas Colsaerts
4 7 Oct 2012 Alfred Dunhill Links Championship –22 (60-67-69-70=266) 2 strokes Denmark Thorbjørn Olesen
5 14 Dec 2014 Alfred Dunhill Championship^ –20 (62-66-72-68=268) 7 strokes South Africa Louis Oosthuizen

European Tour playoff record (1–1)

No. Year Tournament Opponent(s) Result
1 2012 Volvo Golf Champions South Africa Ernie Els, South Africa Retief Goosen Won with birdie on first extra hole
2 2013 Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open United States Phil Mickelson Lost to birdie on first extra hole

Sunshine Tour wins (4)[edit]

No. Date Tournament Winning score Margin of
victory
Runner(s)-up
1 18 Nov 2010 Coca-Cola Charity Championship –7 (68-71-70=209) 2 strokes South Africa Ulrich van den Berg, South Africa Justin Walters
2 15 Jan 2012 Joburg Open^ –17 (67-66-65-72=270) 1 stroke England Jamie Elson
3 28 Sep 2012 Vodacom Origins of Golf Final –10 (69-72-68=209) 3 strokes South Africa Allan Versfeld
4 14 Dec 2014 Alfred Dunhill Championship^ –20 (62-66-72-68=268) 7 strokes South Africa Louis Oosthuizen
  • ^ Co-sanctioned by the European and Sunshine Tours.
  • * Co-sanctioned by the European Tour and the OneAsia Tour.

Results in major championships[edit]

Tournament 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Masters Tournament DNP DNP DNP DNP T18 CUT
U.S. Open DNP DNP DNP T51 CUT DNP
The Open Championship T43 DNP DNP T77 T64 T36
PGA Championship DNP DNP DNP CUT CUT T46

DNP = Did not play
CUT = missed the half-way cut
"T" = tied
Yellow background for top-10.

Summary[edit]

Tournament Wins 2nd 3rd Top-5 Top-10 Top-25 Events Cuts made
Masters Tournament 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 1
U.S. Open 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 1
The Open Championship 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 4
PGA Championship 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 1
Totals 0 0 0 0 0 1 11 7
  • Most consecutive cuts made – 3 (2009 Open Championship – 2012 Open Championship)
  • Longest streak of top-10s – 0

Results in World Golf Championships[edit]

Tournament 2012 2013 2014
Accenture Match Play Championship DNP R64 R64
Cadillac Championship T35 T49 T40
Bridgestone Invitational T36 T65 T23
HSBC Champions DNP T39 DNP

DNP = Did not play
QF, R16, R32, R64 = Round in which player lost in match play
"T" = Tied
Yellow background for top-10.

Team appearances[edit]

Professional

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]