2013 Presidents Cup: Branden Grace debuts for Internationals alongside 4 other South Africans

David Cannon

Can one of the lesser known South Africans find his 2012 form that made him one of the best players in the world?

Branden Grace rounds out the the South African crop of golfers on the International team, and it's hard to project what captain Nick Price will get from him. Grace rocketed up the world rankings and onto the global golf stage in 2012 with an incredible four-win season. Piling up those victories shot him to the top of the points qualifying process and he stayed inside the top 10 this season to get that automatic spot, despite not winning in 2013.

A natural partner for Grace is fellow South African Richard Sterne, who is also making his debut this year. Grace has been unable to match the 2012 form, and he missed five cuts in 12 events (including the Memorial at Muirfield) on the American PGA Tour. He took Phil Mickelson to a playoff at the Scottish Open, but Lefty hit a legendary shot to defeat Grace on his way to the Scottish-British double. Grace also finished inside the top 20 at the Masters and posted a solid 3-1-1 record at the Volvo Match Play in Bulgaria earlier this year, so he's proven he can hang around in the big events beyond last year's bulldoze through the Euro Tour.

Grace will be accompanied by four other South Africans, matching a record (set by Australians) for the most players from one country on the International side. He'll likely lean on Ernie Els, the godfather of the team, as well as Charl Schwartzel. If Grace and Sterne do get paired together, they'll be heavy underdogs against a much deeper USA team with a bottom of the roster still ranked well ahead of Grace in the world rankings. In reality, any points secured by Grace will be a bonus for the International group.

World Ranking: 38

Qualified: Automatic spot No. 7 of 10

Presidents Cup Match Play Record: This is his debut.

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