Aiken pips Fisher in play-off

European Tour

Thomas Aiken became the fourth South African to win the Africa Open on Sunday after beating Oliver Fisher in a play-off.

The 30-year-old made a 30ft birdie putt on the first extra hole at the 18th and watched as Englishman Fisher missed the green and his 15ft par attempt at East London Golf Club.

It was a case of twice unlucky for Fisher, who carded a two-under-par 69 to join Aiken at 20 under par for the tournament, as he had a chance to win in regulation, but his birdie putt at the 18th narrowly missed.

While Fisher’s round included three bogeys and five birdies, Aiken’s only dropped shot came at the 14th while he also had an eagle at the par-4 third that helped him to a four-under-par 67.

The victory earned Aiken his fourth European Tour title while he is also the fourth South African after Charl Schwartzel, Louis Oosthuizen (twice) and Darren Fichardt to win the event.

“I’ve been waiting for this for quite some time; I’ve won a couple of times overseas, but there is nothing like winning in front of a home crowd,” Aiken told the official European Tour website.

“The South African fans have been unbelievable throughout my whole career so it’s nice to finally get one for you guys.”

Englishman David Horsey produced one of the rounds of the day as his six-under-par 65 helped him to a share of third place with John Hahn while Fichardt was another shot back with three other players including Emiliano Grillo.

Argentinian Grillo started the day with a two-shot lead, but he fell away badly after he could only manage a two-over-par 73.

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