Jacques van der Westhuyzen

By Jacques van der Westhuyzen

Head of Sport


Next big thing: Can Thriston Lawrence end SA’s Major golf drought?

With four big wins on the DP World Tour in the last two years is Lawrence the man to bag SA's next Major title?


For some time now we have been wondering about who the next “big” South African golfer will be. Who will win the next Major and be a regular challenger on the world’s biggest tours? In this column we have often bemoaned the fact that South Africa produces great young golfers full of potential but that so few of them actually go on to crack it on the big stage. Thriston Lawrence But maybe in Thriston Lawrence this country has a golfer who will be the next big thing, following in the footsteps of Ernie Els, Retief Goosen, Charl Schwartzel and…

Subscribe to continue reading this article
and support trusted South African journalism

Access PREMIUM news, competitions
and exclusive benefits

SUBSCRIBE
Already a member? SIGN IN HERE

For some time now we have been wondering about who the next “big” South African golfer will be.

Who will win the next Major and be a regular challenger on the world’s biggest tours?

In this column we have often bemoaned the fact that South Africa produces great young golfers full of potential but that so few of them actually go on to crack it on the big stage.

Thriston Lawrence

But maybe in Thriston Lawrence this country has a golfer who will be the next big thing, following in the footsteps of Ernie Els, Retief Goosen, Charl Schwartzel and Louis Oosthuizen — this country’s most recent Major winners. Branden Grace has come close to bagging a Major while Christiaan Bezuidenhout, Garrick Higgo and Wilco Nienaber also have the potential to make it big.

There are, of course, many other South African golfers, many of them young rising stars in the game, who have bright futures ahead of them.

Here one thinks, among others, of Aldrich Potgieter, the second youngest winner in the 128-year history of the Amateur Championship at Royal Lytham and St Annes last year, and Christo Lamprecht, who won this year’s event at Hillside, this last weekend.

Ernie Els’ nephew, Jovan Rebula, won the prestigious amateur event in 2018.

Four wins in two years

But 26-year-old Lawrence, from Nelspruit, is South Africa’s in-form golfer and perhaps the man who’ll make the biggest moves in the immediate future.

At the weekend he overcame a four-shot deficit going into the final round in Munich to win the BMW International Open, for his fourth DP World Tour victory in two years. That is some achievement in the highly competitive, and up-and-down, world of international golf.

Lawrence enjoyed a phenomenal amateur career, but battled to settle after turning pro, but since his first European Tour win in 2021 at the Joburg Open he hasn’t looked back.

Last year he won the European Masters in August and followed that up with a triumph at the SA Open in December. Now he has won the BMW International Open, just a week after missing the cut at the US Open in Los Angeles.

Golf is a hard game and wins don’t come easily, but Lawrence seems to finally be fulfilling all the potential and promise he showed as an amateur and long may it continue.

Read more on these topics

DP World Tour European tour Golf pga tour

Access premium news and stories

Access to the top content, vouchers and other member only benefits