Lawrence held his nerve to win the Investec South African Open on Sunday after threatening to surrender a five-shot lead with five holes to play at Blair Atholl. The DP World Tour rookie of the year ultimately secured his third victory in 12 months and is among the favourites to enjoy further success at Leopard Creek, near to where he grew up in Mbombela. "This is a very special place for me," Lawrence said. "The Alfred Dunhill Championship was the first professional tournament I ever came to support. "I remember seeing Ernie Els and all the others win here, and as a young amateur golfer standing next to the green asking for a ball. And to now be here myself is special. "It's very exciting to be here. Everybody wants to get their hands on that leopard trophy." Four-time major winner Els is also in the field for an event he won 17 years ago, the first time it was staged at Leopard Creek. "It's one of my favourite events in the world so hopefully we can do something," said the 53-year-old, who now competes mainly on the seniors circuit. "We are almost like tourists now, we live abroad. My wife is here and we're enjoying it like a tourist, we're going into the Kruger National Park and looking at the animals and enjoying the South African bush. It's an amazing place. "It's wonderful, just look at the place. It's nice and green, had a lot of rain, the river is flowing and the golf course is in amazing condition so it's great to be back." Fellow major winners Louis Oosthuizen and Charl Schwartzel and former champions Branden Grace, Brandon Stone, Richard Sterne and Christiaan Bezuidenhout are part of a strong home contingent, while England's Dan Bradbury seeks to build on his Joburg Open win last month.
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