Nick Gordon
1 minute read
20 Dec 2013
6:00 am

Grace desperate for amazing start

Nick Gordon

The year 2014 looks set to begin with a bang as a stellar line-up tee it up at Durban Country Club for the Volvo Golf Champions tournament from January 9.

FILE PICTURE: Branden Grace. Photo by Petri Oeschger / Sunshine Tour / Gallo Images

With an entry list that includes four-time Major winner Ernie Els, three-time Major champion Padraig Harrington, 2010 Open champion Darren Clarke and Colin Montgomerie, Miguel Angel Jimenez and this year’s Nedbank Golf Challenge winner Thomas Bjorn, the fight for the $4-million prize fund is fierce.

One golfer who is eager to get his year off to a good start is Branden Grace and he is keen to challenge defending champion Louis Oosthuizen and reclaim the trophy he won back in 2012.

Winning this event kick-started his year in a big way as he racked up four European Tour wins and one on the Sunshine Tour and he’s looking to reclaim that sort of form.

“You get to the event and know that all the players are there for a reason – to win and get the year started with a bang,” Grace said from his home at Fancourt, George yesterday.

“It’s one event that you want to tick off,” the 25-year-old, who is enjoying time off after a busy schedule this year that included appearances in European and PGA Tour events, added.

“I feel like the golf game is there. I’m hitting the ball from tee to green it’s just the putting that’s been letting me down a bit.

“But I’ve got some time off now to work on a couple of things,” said Grace, who finished in a share of sixth at last weekend’s Nelson Mandela Championship presented by ISPS Handa.

“It’s going to be pretty busy and the first couple of months of the year are always tough ones,” Grace said of a schedule that includes trips to the Middle East for events in the weeks between this event and the Joburg Open before a planned raid on American soil.