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Erik van Rooyen has put out a plea to find a new caddie ahead of the 3M Open this week, but it’s not because he has sacked his regular looper.

The South African usually has Alex Gaugert on his bag, but he clinched a spot in the field through Monday qualifying.

The usual bagsman booked his place in the 156-man field, as he shot a six-under-par 65 before surviving a 4-for-3 play-off at Victory Links.

Gaugert will make his first start on the PGA Tour in Minnesota, and even more bizarrely, will play with his boss for the opening two rounds.

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The pair have been grouped together, leaving both men on the hunt for a caddie to take part at TPC Twin Cities.

Upon finding out, van Rooyen wasted no time sharing the news on Twitter, unfolding the story as the week went on.

He said: “So my caddie just qualified for the 3M Open! What a STUD. Anyone want to loop this week?”

It was then ‘the gift that keeps on giving’ according to van Rooyen, who laughed about the prospect of playing against his caddie.

As teammates at the University of Minnesota, van Rooyen and Gaugert have played together in the past, and that is when the relationship was first struck.

The 31-year-old caddie took over van Rooyen’s bag in 2019, and two years later he claimed his first PGA Tour title.

His breakthrough win came at the Barracuda Championship in 2021, and it remains van Rooyen’s only victory on the tour to date.

The 33-year-old will be out to pick up some much-needed FedEx Cup points as the end-of-season play-offs draw closer.

He currently sits in 127th place in the standings, largely down to a turbulent season, which until recently read seven consecutive missed cuts.

That streak was broken at the Genesis Scottish Open, however, when van Rooyen told that it was only a matter of time.

Last week’s T6 at Tahoe Mountain Club in the Barracuda Championship was another step in the right direction.

American Ryan Moore will keep van Rooyen and Gaugert company, as the trio tee off at 2 pm local time.

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John Turnbull A graduate of the University of Stirling, John joined the bunkered team in 2023 as a Content Producer, with a responsibility for covering all breaking news, tour news, grassroots content and much more besides. A keen golfer, he plays the majority of his golf at Falkirk Golf Club. Top of his 'bucket list' is a round of Pebble Beach... ideally in the company of Gareth Bale.

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