Abery, Bekker lead in George
George - Warren Abery raced to seven-under and took his share of the first-round lead of the Dimension Data Pro-Am, which got underway at Fancourt’s Outeniqua, Montagu and The Links courses on Thursday.
While all players will tackle a round at each course, followed by the cut and a final round at Montagu, Abery and Oliver Bekker led the first day with 65s shot at Outeniqua and Montagu, respectively.
“I came here this week playing really well and I’m hitting my irons really close and putting well, and I think that’s the key to these courses,” said Abery.
The Sunshine Tour stalwart made a bogey at the first with three consecutive birdies from the second to the fourth and reached the turn at three-under after birdying the sixth. “I got an unlucky lie on the first hole and I managed to make eight birdies from there. I think the first was the only green I missed.”
He strung a further two birdies together at the 10th and 11th and saw things through in style with late birdies at the 17th and 18th. He signed for seven-under 65 on the par 72 course.
Bekker had a far quieter start and made pars until the ninth, where he exploded into action with an eagle. “Then on nine, I made like a 60-footer from the back edge of the green, and that got me going,” he said.
The momentum carried to the 10th where he made the first birdie of his round. From the 14th he closed like a freight train and made birdie at every hole except the 16th, ending up in tied for the lead.
“After I birdied 10, I started hitting it a little closer, and made two nice putts again, and then on 17 I lipped out for an ace, and on 18, almost made eagle,” he added.
The Links, which the only par-73 of the three courses, was tamed by the calm weather and Neil Schietekat took full advantage of the opportunity. He shot six-under-par 67 to take sole possession of second.
“The conditions were good. It picked up over about three holes, and I wouldn’t say it was easy – I don’t think you can ever say that about Links golf – but it was a lot easier than the way we normally play it,” he said.
Scores (RSA unless specified; OUT – Outeniqua, MON – Montagu, LIN – Links):
-7 - Warren Abery (OUT), Oliver Bekker (MON)
-6 - Neil Schietekat (LIN)
-5 - Hennie Otto (OUT), Morne Buys (OUT), Divan van den Heever (MON)
-4 - Thomas Aiken (OUT), James Kingston (OUT), Grant Veenstra (OUT)
-3 - Ulrich van den Berg (LIN), Branden Grace (OUT), Francois Haughton (MON), Chris Erasmus (OUT), Tyrone Ferreira (MON), Michiel Bothma (MON), Desvonde Botes (OUT)
-2 - Theunis Spangenberg (LIN), Steven Ferreira, Jake Redman (OUT), Aron Zemmer (ITA) (MON), Juan Langeveld (MON), Jean Hugo (OUT), Derik Ferreira (LIN), Ockie Strydom (LIN), Tjaart van der Walt (OUT), Lyle Rowe (MON), Bruce McDonald (ZIM) (OUT), David Hewan (MON), Wesley Worster (OUT), Louis Calitz (OUT), Des Terblanche (MON)
-1 - Doug McGuigan (LIN), Laurie Canter (ENG) (LIN), Coenie Bester (LIN), Darren Fichardt (OUT), Lindani Ndwandwe (MON), Merrick Bremner (LIN), Kyle Scott (OUT), Daniel Greene (LIN), Simon Wakefield (ENG) (MON), Chris Swanepoel (MON), Bryce Easton (MON), Louis Moolman (LIN), Mark Williams (MON), Mark Murless (LIN), Daniel Hammond (OUT), Divan Gerber (OUT), Andrew Curlewis (OUT), Michael Hollick (MON), Alex Haindl (MON), PG van Zyl (OUT), Albert Pistorius (OUT), Michael du Toit (OUT)
Par - Louis de Jager (LIN), Greg Petzer (OUT), Anthony Michael (OUT), Wallie Coetsee (MON), Graham van der Merwe (MON), Trevor Fisher Jnr (OUT), Teboho Sefatsa (MON), Keenan Davidse (OUT), Jacques Blaauw (OUT), Andre van Zyl (LIN), Dawie Van der Walt (OUT), James Kamte (MON), Thabang Simon (OUT), PH McIntyre (LIN), Ruan de Smidt (OUT), Titch Moore (MON), Jake Roos (MON), Tyrone Ryan (OUT)
+1 - Reggie Adams (MON), Christiaan Basson (LIN), Andrew Georgiou (LIN), Matthew Carvell (MON), Prinavin Nelson (MON), Brett Liddle (LIN), Jeff Inglis (ENG) (OUT), Colin Nel (LIN), Ariel Canete (ARG) (MON), Alan McLean (SCO) (MON), Darryn Lloyd (OUT), Alan Michell (OUT), Steve Basson (OUT), Jared Harvey (LIN), Beyers Smith (MON), Francois Coetzee (MON)
+2 - Nico van Rensburg (LIN), Bradford Vaughan (LIN), Riekus Nortje (LIN), Vaughn Groenewald (MON), David Dragoo (USA) (MON), Ryan Thompson (OUT), Grant Muller (LIN), Charl Coetzee (MON), Callie Swart (MON), Toto Thimba (Jnr) (OUT), Martin du Toit (MON), Mark Fensham (OUT), Neil Cheetham (ENG) (MON)
+3 - Dean O'Riley (MON), Justin Walters (LIN), Ryan Cairns (ZIM) (MON), Shaun Norris (OUT), Brandon Pieters (LIN), Johan Bekker (OUT), Andre Cruse (LIN), Steve Surry (ENG) (MON), Attie Schwartzel (MON), Hendrik Buhrmann (OUT), Heinrich Bruiners (LIN) , Garry Hill (LIN), Jaco Ahlers (MON)
+4 - Gary Birch Jr (GER) (LIN), JG Claassen (LIN), Martin Maritz (LIN), Robert Wiederkehr (SUI) (OUT), Danie van Tonder (OUT), Jacques van Tonder (LIN), Dismas Indiza (KEN) (LIN), Chris Williams (OUT)
+5 - Micky Hough (ZIM) (MON), Ben Mannix (ENG) (LIN), Lean Boezaart (LIN), Ryan Tipping (LIN), Joshua Cunliffe (LIN), Dean Burmester (LIN), Adrian Ford (OUT), Le Roux Ferreira (MON), Wendell Bossenger (LIN)
+6 - Peter Wilson (ENG) (LIN), Pieter Moolman (LIN), JJ Senekal (LIN), David Ryan (OUT), Kevin Stinson (CAN) (MON), Allan Versfeld (LIN), Coenie Stoop (LIN), TC Charamba (ZIM) (OUT)
+7 - Rossouw Loubser (LIN), Thomas Lovett (LIN), Francois van Vuuren (MON), Nathan Waghorn (MON), Gavan Levenson (MON), Steven van Heerden (MON)
+8 - Thabo Maseko (MON), Omar Sandys (MON)
+9 - Derick Petersen (LIN), JP van der Walt (LIN), Johan du Buisson (LIN), Willie Steyn (OUT)
+10 - Drikus van der Walt (MON), Brendan de Lange (LIN)
+11 - Justin Harding (MON)
+12 - Lee Bromley (ENG) (LIN)
+13 - Ryan Strauss (OUT)
+14 - Johann Mostert (LIN)