Golf

Coetzee steals the show

2011-05-27 17:17
George Coetzee (Gallo)

Pretoria - Home favourite George Coetzee, en route to a second round 65, wrestled the lead from Jean Hugo to go two ahead of the pack on eight under par heading into the final round of the Vodacom Origins of Golf Sunshine tour event at Pretoria Country Club on Friday.

Coetzee is four clear of a host of players, headed by the younger brother of the Masters champion Attie Schwartzel, tied on four under par. Coetzee's seven under par round came courtesy of five birdies in a row from the second hole (his 11th) and then an eagle on the closing par five ninth.

The 24-year-old cited good ball striking as the key to his good scoring, but was also helped by his improved putting.

“Yesterday I actually played better, but today the putts just started to drop on the back nine and that always helps scoring wise," said Coetzee.

"You don't have to hit it that well out here, you just have to make some putts."

“After five birdies in a row my playing partners told me 'well done' but I said I wasn't finished yet.”

“I was initially very uncomfortable with my putting but on 16 I found something and I told my caddie we're going to make some putts now.”

Hugo, the defending champion earlier shot six under par 66 to post six under in the clubhouse.

The veteran Hugo, who has ten victories on tour, said he relished the chance to duel with a different Schwartzel.

The lesser known Schwartzel, is quickly making a name for himself on the Sunshine tour as he kept himself in contention at four under par with a second round 71.

“I see I've got another Schwartzel to beat this year and hopefully I can do it," quipped Hugo.

"The guys will have the best chance in the afternoon with not much wind and it being hot now."

Hugo played his opening nine in two under par with birdies coming on 17 and 18.

He capped off a very solid back nine with an eagle on the ninth for four under on the way home.

Although the chasing Schwartzel dropped a number of shots early on his round to go three over after eight holes, he said he did well to not let his round get away from him.

“I didn't hit the ball so well today but I scrambled well," said Schwartzel.

"I actually made some good drops where it looked like I was going to make some doubles. I made a good putt on 17 (his eighth hole) for par and I birdied 18."

“The front nine, which was my back nine, I think is easier so I believed I could go three or four under coming back.”

Schwartzel added that he thinks he has solved some of his putting problems.

“I changed my grip, I'm now putting cross handed (left hand below right).

"I practised with a belly-putter and then I went to a short putter and it just worked.”

Scores (RSA unless specified):

136 - George Coetzee 71 65
138 - Jean Hugo 72 66
140 - Attie Schwartzel 69 71, PG van Zyl 72 68, Adilson da Silva (BRA) 71 69, Jbe' Kruger 72 68
141 - Allan Versfeld 68 73, Trevor Fisher Jnr 71 70
142 - Johan du Buisson 72 70, Vaughn Groenewald 70 72, Andrew Curlewis 75 67
143 - Brandon Pieters 70 73, Desvonde Botes 73 70
144 - Ryan Tipping 73 71, Shaun Norris 74 70, Christiaan Basson 74 70, Justin Harding 69 75
145 - Neil Schietekat 73 72, Louis de Jager 75 70
146 - Andre Cruse 72 74, Grant Muller 75 71, Chris Swanepoel 70 76, Coenie Stoop 72 74, Lyle Rowe 76 70, Charl Coetzee 75 71, Darren Fichardt 72 74, Willie van der Merwe 76 70
147 - Warren Abery 76 71, Ulrich van den Berg 71 76, Theunis Spangenberg 75 72
148 - Peter Karmis 74 74, PH McIntyre 76 72, Justin Walters 73 75, Merrick Bremner 77 71
149 - Derik Ferreira 75 74, Bradford Vaughan 74 75, David Hewan 77 72, Divan van den Heever 74 75, Toto Thimba (Jnr) 73 76, JJ Senekal 76 73, Stuart Clark (WAL) 76 73, Albert Pistorius 74 75, Doug McGuigan 74 75, Michiel Bothma 75 74 

Missed the cut:

150 - Morne Buys 72 78, Tyrone Ferreira 76 74, JG Claassen 73 77
151 - Jacques Blaauw 76 75, Josh Cunliffe 78 73, Grant Veenstra 77 74, Louis Moolman 82 69, Tjaart van der Walt 75 76
152 - Callie Swart 76 76, James Kamte 77 75
153 - Ryan Hood 76 77, Jaco Ahlers 79 74, Lindani Ndwandwe 79 74, Omar Sandys 73 80, Nic Henning 76 77, Henk Alberts 81 72, Mark Murless 77 76
154 - Brett Liddle 78 76, Daniel Greene 77 77
155 - Derek Scullard 79 76, Alan Michell 76 79, Dean O'Riley 77 78
156 - TC Charamba (ZIM) 76 80, Prinavin Nelson 73 83
157 - Oliver Bekker 82 75
159 - Colin Nel 82 77
160 - Neil Cheetham (ENG) 85 75

RTD - Dion Fourie 83

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