Charl Schwartzel In Contention At JoBurg Open

By Les Bailey
Charl Schwartzel
Leo Mason-USA TODAY Sports

With one victory on his resume already in the early going of the 2013 season, Charl Schwartzel returns to work at his home course, and shoots himself into contention on Friday at the Joburg Open. The 2011 Masters Champion took some time off since winning the Alfred Dunhill Championship back in December, but looks to be back on track as the European Tour moves back to South Africa.

Schwartzel fired a -6 under par 65 in the second round at the Royal Johannesburg & Kensington Golf Course to move into sole possession of third place, playing on the West Course. He shot -4 under 68 on Thursday at the East Course, and has a -10 under total, five strokes off the pace set by Trevor Fisher Jr. Richard Sterne has second place at -12 Under.

The 29 year old Schwartzel came on a dry spell since winning the Masters in 2011, and had been win-less until picking up the victory at the Alfred Dunhill. You might remember, his victory at Augusta came on the afternoon when Rory McIlroy collapsed during the final round. His luck started to turn around at the end of the 2012 season when he picked up a 5th place finish at the SA Open Championship, and went on to a T3 at the DP World Championship, Dubai.

Schwartzel has won the Joburg Open two times in his career, in both 2010, and 2011. He has eight wins on the European Tour, with five of them coming on his home turf in South Africa. He won twice in Spain at the 2008 Madrid Masters, and The Open de Espana in 2007. He is currently 9th in World Golf Rankings, and ninth in Race To Dubai points.

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