Following an opening-round 62, Brendon de Jonge reflects on his play in the 2012 Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open with Dennis Paulson from SiriusXM PGA TOUR Radio.
Ryan Moore wasn’t the only player to go low at the birdie-friendly Justin Timberlake Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. Brendon de Jonge matched his career low with a 62 to move within one of Moore in the opening round.
De Jonge made nine birdies and no bogeys Thursday, including four birdies in a five-hole stretch at one point. He also took just 27 putts after hitting 16 greens in regulation.
The 32-year-old South African’s TOUR card is already secured for next year -- he came into the week 58th on the money list -- but a good week in Las Vegas and a strong Fall Finish could move him into the top 30, which would lock up a spot in next year’s Masters.
Check out the top five shots of the week from the Wyndham Championship and Dick's Sporting Good Open featuring highlights from Tim Clark, Brendon de Jonge, Sergio Garcia, John Huston, and Willie Wood.
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
BETHESDA, Md. -- Fans not being allowed at the golf course Saturday wasn’t the only first at Congressional -- it was also the first time Brendon de Jonge had taken a 54-hole lead at a PGA TOUR event.
Now De Jonge, a former standout at Virginia Tech via Zimbabwe, will try to get his first victory in 137 career starts. This year, there have been five first-time winners.
He’s certainly been building toward this.
Since the start of the 2009 season, de Jonge has the most birdies on TOUR with 1,402 (Webb Simpson, who has had a pretty good couple of years, is second with 1,329).
To put that in perspective, that’s an average of one birdie for every five holes for de Jonge.
This week, de Jonge is just 15th in the field with 11 birdies, but he’s managed to avoid making mistakes with just four birdies through the first three rounds.
By the way, de Jonge is playing for more than just his first career win. A victory here would vault him to the top of the mini-money list to get him into the British Open for the first time in his career. De Jonge came into the week fifth on the list. The top two players not already exempt after next week get an automatic spot in the field.
It's going to be a much different day Sunday at Congressional -- and with fans back, it's going to be unpredictable. Brendon de Jonge sits on his first 54-hole lead on the PGA TOUR, with 2009 AT&T National champ Tiger Woods sitting just one shot back.
What is your prediction about the final round? Who has the best shot at preventing Woods from his 74th PGA TOUR win -- which will pass Jack Nicklaus for second on the all-time list (Sam Snead, 88).
By Mike McAllister, PGATOUR.COM
HONOLULU -- If the winner of the Sony Open in Hawaii is the guy who'll make the most birdies, you might want to keep an eye on Brendon de Jonge.
Since 2009, no player on the PGA TOUR has made more birdies than de Jonge. During that stretch, he's carded 1,163 birdies -- 45 more than his closest competitor in that category, Bo Van Pelt.
"I've always been a guy that's made a fair few birdies," de Jonge said. "I go at a lot of flags. At times I'll make a lot of soft bogeys because of that."
If he can avoid those soft bogeys, de Jonge could be in great shape on Sunday to make a run at his first PGA TOUR win.
Brendon de Jonge and Doug LaBelle II tee off at 6:10 p.m. ET. Click here to follow their round on ShotTracker
By Mike McAllister, PGATOUR.COM
HONOLULU -- Using a new big mallet putter on Thursday, Brendon de Jonge needed 32 putts en route to shooting a 1-over 71.
Overnight, he decided to switch back to the normal-sized putter that he had used last year. Result? An 8-under 62 in Friday's second round in which he needed just 24 putts.
De Jonge said he tried the mallet putter in Wednesday's pro-am and made a couple of nice putts, so he decided to put it in his bag.
"And then obviously yesterday made absolutely nothing," said de Jonge, who ranked 134th in the field in Strokes Gained-Putting in the first round. "Hit the ball similar to how I hit it today. The putter was just the difference."
A big difference. De Jonge's 62 was just two strokes shy of tying the tournament record of 60 by Davis Love III in 1994.
Having corrected the problem, de Jonge is in good shape entering the weekend at the Sony Open in Hawaii. At 7 under for the tournament, he'll be among the last players to tee off in Saturday's third round.
In 2008, de Jonge was voted the Nationwide Tour's Player of the Year. In his 91 TOUR starts since then, he's had 14 top-10 finishes.
Although he's given himself chances to win on several occasions -- at the 2010 Viking Classic, he was the co-leader through the first 36 holes and tied for second entering the final round before finishing tied for third -- he has yet to seal the deal.
Maybe this week?
"I've given myself a lot of really good chances to win," he said. "I feel like I'm getting closer and closer."
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Carl Pettersson isn’t the only player taking advantage of the perfect scoring conditions at Sedgefield on a sunny Saturday afternoon.
Brendon de Jonge has just finished a round of 65 that left him in the tie at 9 under. The big man from Zimbabwe has been playing extremely well of late – tying for seventh at the John Deere Classic, 13th at the Viking Classic, fourth at the Greenbrier Classic and 26th at last week’s PGA.
Kyung-tae Kim, who is playing on a special international exemption, also is in that logjam at 9 under after matching de Jonge’s 65. He closed with a 31 on the back that included four birdies.
Tommy Gainey, who leads at 12 under, and Webb Simpson, also at 9 under, tee off at 2:05 p.m. ET
By Helen Ross, PGATOUR.COM
WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W. Va. -- Brendon de Jonge called it a "terrible" effort.
He was looking at a birdie putt on the 72nd hole. A mere 5 feet, 7 inches stood between the big man from Zimbabwe and a share of the lead at The Greenbrier Classic.
But de Jonge missed. And another chance at his first PGA TOUR victory disappeared, as well.
"I had it straight up the hill ... and barely touched the hole and just had a bad putt," de Jonge said.
Still, the former Virginia Tech standout couldn't be too disappointed. He held a share of the 36-hole lead, lost it with a frustrating 72 on Saturday but rallied and gave himself a chance on Sunday.
De Jonge bogeyed his first hole of the final round, but made the turn in 31 after closing out the front nine with a string of three straight birdies. He went on to make a 5-footer at the par-5 17th to move to 9 under and within one stroke of Bob Estes, who was waiting in the clubhouse.
And then he missed that birdie putt.
"I didn't get off to a great start, obviously, bogeying the first but made a couple of birdies around the turn which got me back in the tournament and gave me a chance on the back nine," de Jonge said. "Just didn't make any putts when I needed to."
Even so, de Jonge, who had two top-10s entering The Greenbrier Classic, continues his love affair with The Old White TPC. He finished solo third a year ago.
"It was fun,” de Jonge said. "It was exciting. Obviously, it would have been nice to make that last one or a couple more coming in, but , no, that was fun."