Thriston Lawrence won his first DP World Tour title after the third and final rounds of the Covid-19 and weather-affected Joburg Open was abandoned.

The opening event of the season had already been reduced to 54 holes to help players, caddies and staff return to their home countries as international travel restrictions were imposed on South Africa due to the new variant of Covid-19 detected in the country.

Irish interest in the tournament ended when Niall Kearney, Cormac Sharvin, Jonathan Caldwell and Paul Dunne withdrew ahead of the second round due to travel concerns.

Storms had also played havoc over days one and two and after lightning saw the players come off in round three and heavy rain rendered parts of the course unplayable, the result was decided on 36-hole scores.

That handed the trophy to South African Lawrence, who was 12 under after back-to-back rounds of 65 and had made a bogey on the first shortly before play was suspended.

The top three players in the top 10 not already exempt earned a place in the field at next season's Open Championship and Lawrence, fellow South African Zander Lombard and England's Ashley Chesters will now tee it up at St Andrews.

Lombard finished four shots behind Lawrence, with Chesters a further shot back alongside South African Shaun Norris, who was already exempt.

"It’s a lifelong dream that’s come true," said Lawrence. "I’ve never played in a major before and to play your first one at St Andrews is unbelievable.

"I can’t wait, I’m so excited. From a young age, it was a goal of mine and it’s unbelievable to achieve it.

"You don’t get these opportunities often. I’ve had four years of co-sanctioned events so you build up experience but it’s just unbelievable.

"It’s been a goal, you want to see yourself up there but the last year and a half of Covid it’s been tough so you sort of see your dreams fade. For it to change this week is unbelievable."