A successful defence of the Challenge Tour-sanctioned Limpopo Championship in February 2020 was quickly followed by Ritchie winning the Sunshine Tour Order of Merit the same month and thus qualifying for an Open Championship debut at Royal St George’s.
It was his seventh victory on his home circuit in under three years, the first of them coming in the 2017 Zimbabwe Open when he defeated Trevor Fisher Jnr on the second hole of a play-off after a closing 64.
The following season he added the Sun Carnival City Challenge and was third behind Chris Paisley and Branden Grace in the BMW South African Open, finishing with back-to-back rounds of 65 in an event which saw him move up the world rankings from 586th to 326th.
He made it into the top 200 later that year and reached 111th during 2019, when he had to go to extra holes again to capture both the Limpopo Championship and Zanaco Masters – he eagled the final hole in that and then beat Rhys Enoch at the first extra hole.
Ritchie also won the first of two successive Team Championships in 2019 alongside Jaco Prinsloo. The “JC” in his name stands for Juan Carlo.