Golf: Brandon Stone cruises to comfortable Alfred Dunhill Championship win

MALELANE, South Africa (REUTERS) - Brandon Stone claimed a second European Tour victory, as he ran away from the field for a seven-stroke triumph at the Alfred Dunhill Championship at the Leopard Creek Country Club on Sunday.

The 23-year-old extended his overnight three-shot advantage as he finished with a 67 and a 22-under total of 266 on the opening weekend of the new Tour season.

Four birdies in five holes from 10th strengthened his grip on the leader board and saw him move away from the chasing pack to add to the South African Open title he won in January.

Fellow South African Richard Sterne was second after a final-round 67 with Belgian Thomas Detry a further two shots back in third place.

The 23-year-old Detry hit a four-under par 68 to confirm the promise he showed in graduating from the challenge tour.

Defending champion Charl Schwartzel, seeking to win the same title on the European Tour for the fifth time and join an elite club with Bernard Langer, Tom Watson and Tiger Woods, carded a 74 and was 10 strokes behind.

The former Masters champion did threaten a fightback when he hit three birdies in his opening six holes, but a triple-bogey eight at the 15th ended his slim chances.