Schwartzel tears apart Dunhill field

South African Charl Schwartzel completed his fantastic finish to 2012 with an astonishing 12-stroke victory on home soil at the Alfred Dunhill Championship.

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n On-form Charl Schwartzel poses with the trophy after winning by 12 strokes at Leopard Creek
n On-form Charl Schwartzel poses with the trophy after winning by 12 strokes at Leopard Creek

The third-biggest winning margin in European Tour history was achieved at Leopard Creek a week after last year's US Masters champion won in Thailand by 11 shots.

Only Tiger Woods and Ernie Els, who won the 2000 US Open and 2005 Asian Open by 15 and 13 respectively, have left the best of the rest trailing so far behind in the circuit's 40-year history.

Schwartzel, 10 clear with a round to play, added a three-under-par 69 either side of a two-hour thunderstorm delay to take his eighth Tour title – five of them in South Africa – with a 24-under-par total.

In the Thailand Championship he was 25 under, and for the past five weeks – they started with finishes of fifth, third and second – he is a staggering 84 under.

East Kilbride's Scott Jamieson, who last Sunday captured the Nelson Mandela Championship in Durban, was joint-third.

Schwartzel also continued a remarkable record at the course on the border of the Kruger National Park. He won his first Tour title there in 2004 and has had four runners-up finishes.

"It's always been a special place for me," the 28-year-old said. "I was saying a month and a half ago it's been a pretty disappointing year. It's been a pretty good year now!"

Meanwhile, Scotland's Paul Lawrie is among those to book their Masters places through the end-of-year top 50.

BASKETBALL: Glasgow Rocks snapped a three-game losing streak with a 109-72 victory at home to Mersey Tigers. The victory sees the Rocks climb to sixth in the BBL Championship.

ICE HOCKEY: Braehead Clan lost out 5-3 at Edinburgh Capitals in Elite League action last night.

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