Erik van Rooyen Player Profile And What's In The Bag
It secured his playing rights for two years and earned him a huge pay day of $1.47m, but after he holed an eagle putt on the 18th green for a 63 that secured his second victory on the PGA Tour, his caddie, Alex Carter, fell into Erik van Rooyen’s arms in tears.
The player also fought back the tears. It emerged that John Trasamar, one of the closest friends of both van Rooyen and Carter is desperately ill, something that has put life into perspective for van Rooyen.
Van Rooyen said: “I was calm because there is bigger stuff in life than golf. This was for John Trasamar, who is dying of cancer and is not going to make it. When you are playing for bigger things than some little trophy it really doesn’t matter if you miss a few putts.
“Thinking about him dragged me down. He has been on my mind all week. When I step on the golf course I have a job to do. I love John so much and I am in disbelief about what he is going through. I wish I could take his pain away. We will be leaving here to see him and give him a high five.”
Playing alongside Matt Kuchar at the Tiger Woods-designed El Cardonal at Diamante, van Rooyen played the back nine in 8-under 28 and shot a final-round 9-under 63. He finished at 27-under 261, two strokes ahead of Kuchar and Camilo Villegas.
Kuchar and Villegas each shot 66, with the 45-year-old Kuchar parring the final four holes. Tied for the lead on 18, Kuchar - after van Rooyen and Villegas hit fairway-wood second shots near each other on the green - hit his approach left of the green and chipped 20 feet past the hole.
On Saturday, Kuchar was six strokes ahead at 24 under when he pulled his drive on 15 left into dense bushes and made a quadruple-bogey 8. He then bogeyed the par-3 16th and ended up tied for the lead with Villegas.
Van Rooyen opened the final round with a bogey on the par-5 first and made birdies on Nos. 2 and 6. In his back-nine charge, he birdied the 10th, 11th, 12th, 14th, 16th and 17th before closing with an eagle.
Van Rooyen was born in Bellville, South Africa on February 21, 1990.
He attended the University of Minnesota from 2009 until 2013 and won the 2012 Minnesota State Amateur.
He turned professional in 2013 and played on the Sunshine Tour, winning the Eye of Africa Championship in 2017. He played on the Challenge Tour in 2017, winning the Hainan Open and recording a number of other excellent performances that saw him secure his DP World Tour card.
In December 2017 he was runner-up at the Joburg Open. He led the Dubai Desert Classic after 54 holes but finished in a tie for fourth.
He was runner-up at the 2019 Qatar Masters and Hassan Trophy and finished in the top 10 at the US PGA Championship. In August 2019 he won the Scandinavian Invitation. He tied for third at the WGC Mexico Championship. After a tie for 20th at the WGC-St Jude Invitational he gained temporary membership of the PGA Tour and in August 2012 he won the Barracuda Championship.
World Wide Technology Championship - 1st
Shriners Children's Open - T23rd
Sanderson Farms Championship - T16th
Fortinet Championship - T30th
Horizon Irish Open - T16th
Omega European Masters - T8th
Wyndham Championship - CUT
3M Open - CUT
Barracuda Championship - T6th
Genesis Scottish Open - T68th
Driving Distance - 305.2 Yards
Driving Accuracy - 56.15%
Greens in Regulation - 67.42%
Sand Saves - 45.26%
Putts Per Round - 29.30
Scoring Average - 69.55
- Driver: Callaway Paradym Triple Diamond (9°) – Mitsubishi Diamana 60 TX shaft
- Utility: Callaway Apex UW (17°) - Mitsubishi Kai'li 90 Shaft, Callaway X Forged UT (2-Iron) - Tour AD DI95 X Shaft
- Irons: Callaway Apex TCB (4 Iron), Callaway Apex MB (5-PW) - KBS Tour V 120 X Shafts
- Wedges: Callaway JAWS Raw 50°, 54° & 58°
- Putter: Odyssey Toulon San Diego Putter
- Golf Ball: Callaway Chrome Soft X
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