Sport24.co.za | Fisher’s course record seals Zimbabwe Open lead

This post was originally published here

Harare – Trevor Fisher jnr equalled the Royal Harare Golf Club course record of nine-under-par 63 on Friday to move into a four-stroke lead at the halfway mark of the Zimbabwe Open.

He joined Nick Price, Italian Francesco Laporta and 2015 champion Dean Burmester as holders of the record with a flawless display which included nine birdies. His playing partners Jean Hugo and Jaco Ahlers matched that total between them, and walked away with a pair of 69s between them. Hugo was the man four shots behind Fisher, and Ahlers was yet another four back.

“I putted amazingly today, so that helped,” said Fisher.

“I didn’t hit my irons as well as I would have liked. I hit one or two good irons, but the putter was great. I was sinking 15, 20-footers… to shoot nine-under, you’ve got to sink some putts.

“It’s great to join players like Nick Price and Dean Burmester as course-record holders here. I hope I can break it over the weekend!” he added.

Fisher had a good week on the European Tour last week, with his share of eighth place in the Trophee Hasan II in Morocco getting him into this week’s Shenzen International in China. But he was unable to get a visa in time, so he kept the momentum going by playing in Zimbabwe. And it’s clearly paid off.

“I’ve been feeling a bit better than I felt last week in Morocco,” he said. “I’m working on a few little things and trying to pick up one or two little movements or feelings out there, and so far it’s feeling alright.

“But this game’s always a fight. You always are trying hard to keep it together and shoot a good score, but I just try to hit fairways and greens and give myself a chance for birdie, and I did that and I made nine of them, which is pretty good.

“I drove the ball a bit better today than I did in the first round. I’m not hitting it quite as far as I want, but I drove it in the fairway quite a few times. The irons weren’t quite what I’d like them to be, so I hope I can hit them a little closer tomorrow so the putter can carry on working overtime,” he added.

Hugo was full of praise for Fisher’s round.

“I think he missed one green,” he said, “and he holed a lot of good putts. I think he had seven one-putts on the front nine. He played very well, so 63 was probably the worst he could have shot.”

The man in third place at the end of the round was Oliver Bekker, who found some serious momentum after three bogeys in his opening nine saw him turn in level par. He made four birdies on his way in and will look to reproduce that kind of play over the weekend.

In fourth was Rhys Enoch of Wales, who has been threatening to win in South Africa for some time now. He was a bit taken aback by Fisher’s record. “I wasn’t expecting that, to be honest,” he said.

“I just went out and tried to get as close to double figures under par as I could. I’m a little back of that, but I’m glad I’m still up there.”

Fisher’s lead means his pursuers are going to have to chase and chase hard. It should make for an exciting weekend.

Scores:

130 – Trevor Fisher Jnr 67 63

134 – Jean Hugo 65 69

135 – Oliver Bekker 67 68

136 – Rhys Enoch 68 68

138 – Jaco Ahlers 69 69, Breyten Meyer 71 67, Aubrey Beckley 68 70, Luke Jerling 67 71, Anthony Michael 68 70

139 – Andrew Curlewis 69 70, Vaughn Groenewald 68 71, Ryan Cairns 66 73, Jean-Paul Strydom 70 69, TC Charamba 70 69, Keenan Davidse 67 72, Neil Schietekat 70 69, Christiaan Basson 72 67

140 – Rourke van der Spuy 68 72, Cody Martin 68 72, Toby Tree 72 68, Tyrone Ferreira 68 72, Steven Ferreira 71 69, Ruan Huysamen 74 66

141 – JC Ritchie 74 67, Ulrich van den Berg 72 69, Riekus Nortje 75 66, Chris Swanepoel 74 67, Wallie Coetsee 72 69, Lindani Ndwandwe 69 72

142 – Jonathan Agren 69 73, James Kamte 71 71, Zander Lombard 72 70, Michael Hollick 70 72, Martin Rohwer 71 71, Christiaan Bezuidenhout 71 71, CJ du Plessis 67 75, Doug McGuigan 73 69, N.J. Arnoldi 69 73

143 – Dayne Moore 70 73, Andrew Odoh 75 68, MJ Viljoen 72 71, Teaghan Gauche 70 73, Toto Thimba 73 70, Bryce Easton 71 72, Peter Karmis 70 73, Herman Loubser 72 71, Rhys West 74 69, Stephen Ferreira 73 70

144 – Musiwalo Nethunzwi 69 75, Jason Froneman 68 76, Jared Harvey 69 75, Justin Harding 70 74, Francois Coetzee 67 77, Jason Viljoen 73 71, Jacquin Hess 71 73, Danie van Tonder 68 76, Merrick Bremner 71 73, Michael Palmer 72 72, Arthur Horne 72 72

145 – Coert Groenewald 70 75, Antonio Costa 72 73, Gary Thompson 74 71, Heinrich Bruiners 74 71, Callum Mowat 72 73, Trainos Muradzikwa 69 76, Kyle Pilgrim 73 72, Tyrone Ryan 70 75, Mark Williams 73 72, Alex Haindl 69 76

Missed the cut:

146 – Madalitso Muthiya 69 77, Desne Van Den Bergh 77 69, Sheldon Steyn 75 71, Marc Cayeux 73 73, Colin Nel 75 71, Jake Redman 75 71, Stefan Engell Andersen 72 74, Phumlani Maluka 75 71

147 – Dongkwan Kim 72 75, Scott Campbell 75 72, Lyle Rowe 74 73, Sean Bradley 73 74, Danie Van Niekerk 74 73, Damon Stephenson 76 71, Ryan Tipping 78 69, Jeff Inglis 74 73, Ruan de Smidt 73 74, Steve Surry 75 72, Clive Nguru 72 75

148 – Altaaf Bux 75 73, Chris Cannon 73 75, Mikhail Tewary 78 70, Theunis Spangenberg 73 75, Julius Kamalizeni 76 72, Stuart Smith 74 74, Sipho Bujela 74 74, Titch Moore 75 73, Hennie du Plessis 76 72, Nyasha Muyambo 75 73

149 – Quintin Wilsnach 74 75, Andre Cruse 72 77, Dwayne Basson 76 73, Andre de Decker 74 75, Teagan Moore 73 76, Richie O’Donovan 75 74, Combrinck Smit 74 75

150 – Mohammad Rauf Mandhu 76 74, Thanda Mavundla 79 71, Jaco Prinsloo 71 79, JJ Senekal 74 76, Wynand Dingle 72 78, Allan Versfeld 72 78, Andre Nel 75 75, Neil O’Briain 72 78, Greg Bentley 77 73, Jake Roos 76 74, Brian Gondo 76 74

151 – Kayyam Rauf Mandhu 74 77, Makhetha Mazibuko 74 77, Matthew Carvell 74 77, Daniel Hammond 77 74, Brandon Cloete 78 73, Mark Murless 76 75, Charl Coetzee 75 76

152 – Tonderayi Masunga 78 74, Zack Byrd 76 76, Gerard du Plooy 74 78, Matthew Spacey 78 74, Simon Mburu 74 78, Jason Diab 78 74, Jacques P de Villiers 72 80, Robson Chinoi 75 77

153 – Lyford Yadyo 76 77, Irvin Mazibuko 80 73, Jaco Mouton 76 77

154 – Andrew van der Knaap 70 84, Davison Elijah 78 76, Bryce McCabe 77 77

155 – Matias Calderon 79 76, Omar Sandys 74 81

156 – Peter Gustafsson 76 80, PH McIntyre 77 79, Simon Murungweni 81 75, Arnold Burasho 76 80

157 – David Amm 80 77, Teboho Sefatsa 78 79, Thembelani Vundla 79 78

158 – Robson Saurombe 77 81

160 – Armandt Scholtz 81 79

161 – Jason Smith 79 82

166 – Tafara Mpofu 81 85, Liberty Gumisa 80 86

167 – Akil Yousuf 83 84

168 – Never Milazi 80 88

RTD – Cosmas Mufaya 79 RTD, Ignatius Mketekete 75 RTD

DQ – Anyway Katembenuka