With victory in the 2012 Volvo China Open former Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation (EEFF) member Branden Grace became only the second player in European Tour history to win three times in the season after graduating through Qualifying School. Earlier in the season Grace became the first player since Fred Couples in 1995 to follow his first European Tour win – the Joburg Open – with another at the Volvo Golf Champions.
“I stayed really calm today,” said Grace after his win in China. “To have three [wins] before May is literally unbelievable. Everything is going great. I wouldn’t have thought I would have been top 70 in the world and it is nice to know that I don’t have to worry about a lot of stuff and I will just be able to play the game with a smile on my face and try to push on from here. I want to get better, I want to win more titles and I want to play the majors and make a name for myself around the world.”
Branden was a member of the EEFF in 2006 and was an outstanding amateur. “He was our best golfer at that stage,” commented the Foundation’s Chief Executive Hannes van Niekerk. “He always showed an intense love and commitment for the game. He had the talent and I knew that if he kept on working at his game he should win on the big stage one day. He’s proved that with some outstanding play this season.”
“I am very proud of him,” said Ernie Els. “It has been an outstanding start to the year for the Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation. First Louis won the Africa Open and since then Branden has won three times. I can’t ask for more. One of the focuses at the Foundation is to produce champions and it gives me great pleasure to see them doing so well. These performances will definitely motivate our current members.”
For more information on the Ernie Els & Fancourt Foundation please click here.