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Driving distance has been arguably the biggest talking-point in golf throughout 2020, thanks in no small part to the incredible exploits of Bryson DeChambeau.

The US Open champion has completely transformed his body in a bid to hit the ball further, and to great effect. DeChambeau, 27, topped the PGA Tour’s ‘Driving Distance’ category in the 2019/20 campaign and currently leads the way again so far this season.

However, he is far from the only player capable of smashing the ball humungous distances.

Say hello to Wilco Nienaber.

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The 20-year-old South African rookie presently tops the ‘Driving Distance’ stats on the European Tour, with an average hit of 336.81 yards. That’s around 35 yards longer than the tour average and, for those keeping count, 14 yards longer than DeChambeau’s average on the PGA Tour last season. 

So, yeah, he’s a big-hitter.

He demonstrated that prowess today in the opening round of the Joburg Open at Randpark GC.

Nienaber was six-under on his round when he stepped onto the 597-yard par-5 fourth, his 13th hole of the day. Then he did this…

That’s a 439-yard drive. It left him a gap wedge to the green for his second shot.

“That is borderline obscene,” said six-time European Tour champion Tony Johnstone on commentary duty. “It’s a joy to watch because that’s what every golfer ever wanted to do.”

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Nienaber would ultimately make birdie on that hole and went on to finish eight-under on his round. He’s tied for the lead after the opening day he goes in search of his first European Tour title.

If he keeps on hitting it like that, it surely won’t be long before he’s holding some silverware.

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