Charl Schwartzel
-6

Scorecard
Biography
ROUND
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
OUT
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
IN
TOTAL
1
4
5
5
3
3
4
3
5
4
36
5
4
3
4
5
4
3
3
4
35
71
2
4
4
4
3
4
5
3
6
5
38
4
4
3
4
6
4
3
3
5
36
74
3
4
4
4
3
5
5
3
3
4
35
5
3
3
3
4
4
3
4
3
32
67
4
4
4
4
3
4
4
4
4
5
36
4
4
3
4
5
4
3
3
4
34
70
Par
4
5
4
3
4
4
3
4
5
36
5
4
3
4
5
4
3
4
4
36
72
m
403
520
411
195
449
388
206
450
545
3567
500
419
200
406
550
431
193
437
459
3595
7162
ROUND
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
OUT
1
4
5
5
3
3
4
3
5
4
36
2
4
4
4
3
4
5
3
6
5
38
3
4
4
4
3
5
5
3
3
4
35
4
4
4
4
3
4
4
4
4
5
36
Par
4
5
4
3
4
4
3
4
5
36
m
403
520
411
195
449
388
206
450
545
3567
ROUND
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
IN
TOTAL
1
5
4
3
4
5
4
3
3
4
35
71
2
4
4
3
4
6
4
3
3
5
36
74
3
5
3
3
3
4
4
3
4
3
32
67
4
4
4
3
4
5
4
3
3
4
34
70
Par
5
4
3
4
5
4
3
4
4
36
72
m
500
419
200
406
550
431
193
437
459
3595
7162
Stats
ROUND 1
ROUND 2
ROUND 3
ROUND 4
TOTAL
RANK
Eagles
0
0
0
0
0
12
Birdies
3
3
7
3
16
10
Pars
13
11
9
14
47
10
Bogeys
2
3
2
1
8
23
Double Bogeys/+
0
1
0
0
1
12
Other
0
0
0
0
0
Putts per round
30
30
26
27
28
13
Putts per GIR
1.92
1.91
1.54
1.75
1.78
16
Greens in regulation
66.67 %
61.11 %
72.22 %
66.67 %
66.67 %
11
Sand Saves
1/1
0/1
0/0
1/1
2/3

Born: 31 August 1984.

Turned pro: 2002.

Country: South Africa.

Family: Wife - Rosalind. Child - Olivia.

Special interests: Hunting, cars, flying.

Career highlights: Won his first Major at the Masters in 2011. Has won 12 times as a professional. Won the Sunshine Tour Order of Merit three years in succession in 2005, 2006 and 2007.

2015 highlights: Lost a playoff for the South African Open. Finished seventh in the US Open, and had solid finishes of tied ninth in the WGC-Cadillac Match Play and tied third in the Wyndham Championship on the PGA Tour

2015 Majors: The Masters - T38. The US Open - 7. The Open - T68. The PGA Championship - T37

NGC record: Seventh appearance. 2006 - 5, 2007 - 10, 2011 - 6, 2012 - 2, 2013 - 6, 2014 - T14

Story

Perspective should be an attribute that comes quite easily to a helicopter pilot.

But at the sharp end of world golf, where results on the fairways are incorrectly perceived as a reflection of a man's character and every detail is dissected, perspective requires just as much hard work to maintain as a golf swing.

And Charl Schwartzel has spent much of his career trying to remember that in this game, it's all about perspective.

There was a time a few years ago when he travelled alone into the Namibian desert to try and get some perspective.

He travelled to the town of Otjiwarango, where he spent two weeks alone to do some soul searching.

"I had a lot of alone time there. It works for me. It's the best place for me to clear my head. There's nothing there to distract me. Sitting there in nature is probably the best place to think about things," he said of that time in his life.

Then, one day on that trip, Schwartzel walked into the local hardware store and asked the owner for a carpet offcut.

"What do you want a two-foot square piece of carpet for?" the owner asked.

"To hit golf balls off," said Schwartzel.

He stood in the desert hitting balls, and slowly the perspective returned.

Two years after that moment, he became a Major champion with his victory in the Masters.

Over the past two years, Schwartzel has required a similar perspective on his career.

"Obviously there have been no wins, and everybody wants to see wins. I want to see wins," he said of the questions about when he would return to those lofty heights of Major glory.

"From a South African point of view it's not great," Schwartzel added of the growing questions about when the next Major victory will come for South Africa.

"We're certainly not opening champagne now. I know a lot of the guys are frustrated by it. I know Louis (Oosthuizen) is. He's had his injuries. But you know, the skill is still there. It just needs to kick in and we'll be flying again."

And Schwartzel understands a lot more about his own journey in this game.

"Having a child (in 2014) and my wife going through a really tough time with the birth where things didn't go as planned puts things in perspective for me. It was quite stressful, to say the least. So with those changes I don't think I can be too disappointed with the way I've played. I've been consistent enough and there's lots of space for improvement. I honestly don't think it's that far away from being really good again. You just can't push it in this game."

It perhaps goes unnoticed just how much of a change it is for a largely shy boy from Vereeniging to move to Florida, set up a new home base there and become a father all in a very short space of time, and how this would take a natural settling down period.

"We like it in America. From a family point of view, and in the job I'm in, that is the ultimate place to be. I would love to live in Africa still, but America is definitely second best for me. The travelling is a bit easier and I get to see the family a lot. Louis and Ernie live close to me, and Nick Price. It's a lot like life in South Africa. We braai regularly together and play lots of golf together."

Fatherhood and the birth of daughter Olivia has also been an adjustment for Schwartzel, but one he has thoroughly enjoyed making.

"It's been magic. Louis has had three girls, and you know, Louis was always telling me how good it is. I love kids. Even before we had Olivia I always enjoyed playing with Louis' kids. But it's true what they say, you never know until you have your own. It's been like that for me. I suppose you need to ask my wife how involved I am. I've got a great wife. She gets up most of the time. If she needs help I get up. If I get asked I'll do it, but if I don't get asked, then look, I'll be honest, I'm going to turn around and sleep."

Schwartzel also still finds time to indulge his other passion in life - flying.

"I've still got my fixed wing licence but am doing more helicopter flying at the moment. It's just a hobby for me. I do it mainly when I'm in South Africa, which is where I come to shut down and do things I like. Whenever I get a chance to come home I like to go to the bush and do all of the fun stuff."

Schwartzel is back at Sun City making his seventh appearance in a Nedbank Golf Challenge he would desperately like to win.

He finished second in 2012, coming so close to realising the dream he had when as a boy he watched Ernie Els on the putting green at the Gary Player Country Club, and even nipped under the ropes to steal one of his practice balls.

But as Schwartzel has come to learn, you can indeed not push anything in this game.

"I don't want to expect anything. Expectation is not a good thing. I just play," he once said. "For me, there have been too many people asking, ‘What do you want to achieve?' and you say, ‘Well, this, this and this'. Sure, you want to do things, but the more you force the issue the less you do it. I don't want to think about anything. I just want to tee it up, hit the ball down the fairway, hit it on the green, make the putt and see where it leads me.

"We all want to win tournaments, but thinking about winning golf tournaments is not going to win tournaments for me. I have to stay right here where I am, plod along, and if I play the best I'll win. By playing well and winning, the world ranking and money list all takes care of itself. You can't take the step ahead and say I want to become world number one."

But Schwartzel admits that as a young golfer, he naturally thought of the day he would challenge for and win a Major.

Speaking after this year's US Open, where he finished seventh, and of playing junior golf together with the country's other young stars such as Oosthuizen and Branden Grace, Schwartzel said, "Those are sort of dreams. As a junior you maybe talk about it, you putt against each other as juniors on the putting green. You say we're playing at the Masters and this is for that. I think that's for all the kids. All the dreams don't always come true, but these seem to have."

In the mind of Schwartzel, perspective has given him a new set of dreams to chase.