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Ken Borland

Bradbury still perched at the top of Joburg Open leaderboard 0

Posted on February 28, 2023 by Ken

Overnight leader Dan Bradbury kept his perch at the top of the Joburg Open on Friday after the second round, but he was being chased hard by a Frenchman and a quartet of South Africans who stormed up the leaderboard at Houghton Golf Club.

Rookie Bradbury, playing on a sponsor’s invite, backed up his extraordinary 63 on the first day by shooting an excellent five-under 66 on Friday, lifting him to 13-under-par overall. But on another stormy day at Houghton Golf Club, which led to lengthy delays, that lead was under severe threat and the 23-year-old Englishman was probably saved by the weather as the chasing pack could not complete their rounds before darkness fell.

France’s 27-year-old former amateur star Romaine Langasque is six-under through 11 holes to roar to 12-under-par overall, just a shot back, but it is young Casey Jarvis who is really thrilling the home crowds as he is on the same score with four holes to play. Starting on the 10th hole, the 19-year-old from Boksburg has been catapulted into a share of second by a magnificent seven birdies in a row from the 17th hole to the fifth.

Earlier in the day, Houghton Golf Club was burnt up by Christiaan Bezuidenhout (64) and Danie van Tonder (63), who have multiple local titles between them, and who reached the halfway mark on 10-under-par.

They were joined there by compatriot Jbe Kruger, who shot a 67. England’s Nathan Kimsey (-5) and Finland’s Sami Valimaki (-5) are the other golfers on 10-under and they both have a handful of holes to play.

Bradbury bogeyed the second hole but then went on an amazing run of four birdies and an eagle on his next five holes. He also birdied the 10th and 11th holes to go to 15-under, but back-to-back bogeys on the 15th and 16th holes did kill his momentum.

Those dropped shots could be crucial as Jarvis, Langasque, Bezuidenhout and Van Tonder all had spotless scorecards.

In the sort of heat that could lead to medical attention, Strydom & Jamieson keep their cool 0

Posted on December 10, 2022 by Ken

On the sort of day when those unaccustomed to Lowveld heat could have ended up needing medical attention, South Africa’s Ockie Strydom stormed up the leaderboard in the third round of the Alfred Dunhill Championship, his 63 giving him a share of the lead as Scotsman Scott Jamieson stubbornly refused to let first place go.

Strydom ended the second round tied for 21st place on six-under, seven strokes behind Jamieson, but he produced an amazing round, eight birdies and an eagle taking him to 10-under through 15 holes.

He bogeyed the par-three 16th though, three-putting from the far reaches of the green, and then parred his way home to equal the course record set the previous day by Jamieson.

With 15-under now the target, Jamieson got to that mark with three successive birdies from the 11th hole and then ensured he made no mistakes and did not drop any shots coming in.

“I played the same golf as the first two days,” Strydom said as he improved greatly on scores of 68 and 70. “I made a few putts though, I holed a chip, hit my wedges closer and did not take any risks.

“The eagle on two, when I chipped in, was my shot of the day because I was in an impossible spot, short and right of the green, with a steep bunker to clear.

“There were quite tough flags and subtle breaks in the greens, which I saw were running at 13.7 at the start of my round. If they make them any quicker they’re going to kill us, but I managed to hit the ball in the right places.

“I made the right decisions out there and you can’t attack this course, you have to let it come to you, otherwise you’ll be done,” Strydom said.

Jamieson was happy with his performance, as firmer greens made for a tougher day for the 39-year-old. And that’s not mentioning the 35° heat.

“It was a solid day, I’ll take two-under especially after my front nine. As expected it was tougher today, the green speeds were right up. I hit poor shots on four and five that killed my momentum, but to be one-over at the turn was not a disaster,” Jamieson said.

“I knew there would be chances on the back nine and I was able to take three of them in a row. I was really disciplined, there were only two shots I was really not happy about, on four and five. I stuck to my game-plan and eventually got reward. I was proud of myself,” Jamieson said.

Both Strydom and Jamieson believe they have the equipment, both mentally and in terms of ball-striking, to get the job done in Sunday’s final round and claim the biggest victories of their career.

“I will do the same I’ve been doing every day, just play the golf and if it works out then it does, if it doesn’t, it doesn’t,” the phlegmatic Strydom said.

“We are all the same out there, we are all people, no different to each other. They are just names and we will have to see how good they do it in the final round.

“I’ve been there contending quite a few times and I will just keep doing what I’m doing,” Strydom, who has one Sunshine Tour win and 19 runners-up finishes, said.

“The tournament begins on the back nine tomorrow,” Jamieson said. “So far we’ve all just been jockeying for position, but tomorrow the game-plan could change.

“Tomorrow will be all about who plays the best golf and there are some good names up there on the leaderboard. So it’s going to take a good round to win, if I can get to 20-under I will be happy and hopefully that will be good enough. But you can’t control what others do,” Jamieson added.

One of those prime ‘others’ is Dean Burmester (68), who is tied for third alongside fellow South African Oliver Bekker (68) and in-form Englishman Dale Whitnell (66) on 13-under, two behind.

“I’m happy where I’m at. Leading is harder than chasing and Scott Jamieson won once years ago [2013] and Ockie has won once too. We will just have to wait and see what they do in the final round,” Burmester, who won his second DP World Tour title last year in Tenerife and has eight other Sunshine Tour wins, said.

Having grown up in the humid, subtropical climate of Mutare in eastern Zimbabwe, and with the confidence he has gained playing in America, Burmester is unlikely to wilt in the heat.

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