Fri, 22 Jan 2021

In-form Christiaan Bezuidenhout got off to a strong start in the opening round of the South African Open as he claimed a share of the lead on Thursday at the Gary Player Country Club.

Bezuidenhout, who is fresh from his victory at last week's Alfred Dunhill Championship, carded an opening round of 67 to sit at 5-under.

The 26-year-old, who is currently the highest-ranked golfer in the field, is hoping to secure back-to-back wins in Sun City this week.

"It was nice to have a good start, hopefully I can keep the momentum going over the next week days and put myself in a good position for the weekend and Sunday as well... Overall, I'm pleased with my start," Bezuidenhout told reporters following his round on Thursday.

Bezuidenhout joins Austria's Matthias Schwab and fellow countrymen Jacques Kruyswijk, Ruan Korb and Dean Burmester tied for second.

Burmester shot six birdies and bogeyed his final hole of the day to sit at 5-under, while Kruyswijk scored seven birdies on a tough day at Gary Player Country Club.

"I learnt a lot at Leopard Creek last week about playing golf courses a little too aggressively," said Burmester.

"It was a nice to have a consistent day where I made some good putts. It was just a nice solid day and well-planned work around the golf course. I've got to give credit to my caddie, Jason too."

Austrian Schwab was the only player to hit a bogey-free opening round.

26-year-old Korb continued his fine form from the Sunshine Tour to Sun City as he scored six birdies in a seven-hole stretch.

Korb claimed his maiden Sunshine Tour title at last month's Time Square Casino Challenge at Wingate Park Country Club.

Meanwhile, local favourite Dylan Frittelli was not too far off the lead as he sits tied for seventh alongside Frenchman Matthieu Pavon at 4-under.

68 - Dylan Frittelli, Matthieu Pavon (FRA)

07:30 - Ruan Korb, Jean-Paul Strydom, Merrick Bremner

12:50 - Dylan Frittelli, Wilco Nienaber, Jayden Schaper

Source: News24

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