Blair Atholl performed well on its SA Open debut, showing on the final day it is up there with Gary Player CC and Glendower as our three most challenging and exciting tournament layouts. Not only did the leaders struggle to get over the line, but the course scoring average for round four ballooned to 73.12, compared to 72.45 in the final round of the Nedbank Challenge. Admittedly the quality of the field was stronger at Sun City, yet it’s evident that Blair Atholl is an exacting test for tour pros. No one broke 70 in each round. New Open champion Thriston Lawrence had 26 birdies in 72 holes in a freakishly brilliant display, yet 8 bogeys and a double is a large tally of drops for a winner. Again, interesting to follow Wilco Nienaber’s scores. He was 10-under for the par 5s until he reached No 13 on Sunday and made a 9! It’s rare to see him make worse than par. There were 3 aces in the championship, perhaps a first for the Open? Records from before 2000 are incomplete.