Sunshine Tour

Hahn flies to lead Africa Open

2014-02-14 20:19
John Hahn (Gallo Images)
East London - John Hahn has shot a superlative 61 at East London Golf Club on Valentine’s Day Friday to lead by two shots at the Africa Open Golf Challenge before bad light forced a suspension in play at 18:50.

“Today the putter was hot and I didn’t have to think, it was just ‘step up and hit it’.

"The pace of play in our group was really good, and I think that added to it.

"I knew it rained this morning and it got a tiny bit windy towards the end of the round, but it was perfect conditions for me,” he said.

The American started on the ninth and holed puts from all over the greens, but it was on the front stretch that he produced real magic. It took 28 strokes for the Florida local to make his way around the front nine in eight-under-par.

“When I was younger if I got on a roll like that I would have started to think about it, but I managed to stay in the moment.

"I had a couple of unexpected ones go in, like on the third hole from the fringe. I made a couple of putts you don’t normally make and it turned into a great round,” he said.

The European Tour rookie heads into the weekend on a 126-shot total and two clear of overnight leader Ricardo Santos, who shot 66 on Friday to reach 14-under-par.

Hahn finished tied fifth at European Tour Qualifying School and decided to follow in the footsteps of his countrymen Brooks Koepka and Peter Uihlein and head for South African shores.

“Watching Peter and Brooks come to South Africa over and their success got my attention,” said Hanh.

“You want to accumulate World Ranking points and move forward. To come over here was a last minute idea and it’s turned into a great opportunity for me.”

The wind is expected to pick up during the third round on Saturday, but for the moment 23-year-old Hahn is focused on savouring the experience.

“This is my sixth event on the European Tour and I’m just enjoying it, having a blast with my caddie and every step of the way has been fun. Tomorrow is another step,” he said.

Santos was keen to see what the third round held in store for him.

“I’m really happy with my position and with my game at the moment, so I just want to try to enjoy the weekend and play the best that I can. We’ll see what happens on Sunday afternoon,” he said.

The second round will resume at 07.15 on Saturday morning, with the third round beginning no earlier than 09:15.

SCORES (RSA unless otherwise specified; some players are yet to finish their rounds):
-16 - John Hahn (USA) 65 61
-14 - Ricardo Santos (POR) 62 66
-13 - Oliver Fisher (ENG) 66 63
-12 - David Horsey (ENG) 66 64
-11 - Fabrizio Zanotti (PAR) 65 66, Lucas Bjerregaard (DEN) 64 67, Adam Gee (ENG) 66 65, Emiliano Grillo (ARG) 68 63, Thomas Aiken 66 65
-10 - Jens Dantorp (SWE) 69 63, Mark Williams 67 65, Garth Mulroy 64 68
-9 - Simon Wakefield (ENG) 66 67, Victor Riu (FRA) 66 67, James Kamte 69 64, Darren Fichardt 66 67, Richard Bland (ENG) 64 (-2) [17],Patrik Sjoland (SWE) 66 (-4) [14]
-8 - Ulrich van den Berg 66 68, Jean Hugo 68 66, Ruan de Smidt 68 66, Jaco Van Zyl 69 65, Dawie Van der Walt 68 66,Jose-Filipe Lima (POR) 67 67, Gaganjeet Bhullar (IND) 67 67, Wade Ormsby(AUS) 70 64, Adrian Otaegui (ESP) 69 65
-7 - Jacques Blaauw 70 65, Tjaart van der Walt 67 68, Justin Walters 66 69, James Morrison (ENG) 66 69, Mikko Korhonen (FIN) 72 63,Lee Slattery (ENG) 67 68, David Drysdale (SCO) 65 70, Rhys Davies (WAL) 64 71, Morten Orum Madsen (DEN) 72 63, Jorge Campillo (ESP) 70 65
-6 - PH McIntyre 69 67, Michael Hoey (NIR) 68 68, Daniel Im (USA) 69 67, Danie van Tonder 70 66, Damien McGrane (IRL) 67 69, Jared Harvey 67 69,Edouard Dubois (FRA) 69 67, Matthew Nixon (ENG) 66 70, Adrien Saddier (FRA) 70 66, Jbe' Kruger 67 69, Jamie McLeary (SCO) 69 (-4) [15],Roope Kakko (FIN) 69 (-4) [14], Chris Doak (SCO) 69 (-4) [14]
-5 - Daniel Brooks (ENG) 70 67, Neil Schietekat 69 68, Oliver Bekker 70 67, JJ Senekal 66 71, Stuart Manley (WAL) 68 69, Robert Dinwiddie (ENG) 69 68,Heinrich Bruiners 66 71, Brandon Stone 66 71, Adilson Da Silva (BRA) 68 69, Gregory Bourdy (FRA) 65 72, Sam Walker (ENG) 67 70, Keith Horne 68 69,Mark Tullo (CHI) 66 71, Jason Knutzon (USA) 71 66, Charl Coetzee 71 66, Wallie Coetsee 68 (-2) [15], Sihwan Kim (KOR) 68 (-2) [14]
Missed the cut:-
-4 - Fredrik Andersson Hed (SWE) 68 70, Bryce Easton 69 69, David Higgins (IRL) 70 68, Francois Calmels (FRA) 71 67, Anthony Michael 67 71,Andreas Harto (DEN) 70 68, Jake Redman 69 69, Richard Finch (ENG) 71 67, Trevor Fisher Jnr 67 71, Thomas Pieters (BEL) 70 68, Louis de Jager 70 (-3) [17],Drikus Bruyns 69 (-2) [15], Magnus A Carlsson (SWE) 73 (-6) [15]
-3 - Gareth Maybin (NIR) 71 68, Alexander Levy (FRA) 71 68, James Kingston 66 73, Matthew Carvell 68 71, Kevin Phelan (IRL) 69 70, Phillip Price (WAL) 68 71,Alastair Forsyth (SCO) 71 68, Estanislao Goya (ARG) 71 68, Lyle Rowe 70 69, Darryn Lloyd 69 70, Teboho Sefatsa 69 70, Titch Moore 69 70,Duncan Stewart (SCO) 72 67, Jaco Ahlers 69 (-1) [15], Tyrone Mordt 67 (+1) [14]
-2 - Ryan Cairns (ZIM) 71 69, Craig Lee (SCO) 69 71, Robert Rock (ENG) 69 71, Brinson Paolini (USA) 65 75, Divan van den Heever 69 71, Justin Harding 70 70,Maximilian Kieffer (GER) 69 71, Shiv Kapur (IND) 70 70, Merrick Bremner 65 75, Attie Schwartzel 67 73, Tyrone Ferreira 71 69, Keenan Davidse 71 69,Connor Arendell (USA) 70 70, Marco Crespi (ITA) 66 74, Doug McGuigan 72 68, Warren Abery 72 68, Nacho Elvira (ESP) 68 (+1) [17], Rhys West 70 (-1) [15],Thabo Maseko 71 (-2) [15]
-1 - Dean Burmester 72 69, Simon Dyson (ENG) 72 69, Andrew Curlewis 69 72, Martin du Toit 72 69, Brady Watt (AUS) 69 72, Michael Hollick 71 70,Mikael Lundberg(SWE) 69 72, Eduardo de la Riva (ESP) 70 71, Shaun Norris 67 74, Chris Swanepoel 69 72, Pablo Martin Benavides (ESP) 74 67,Allan Versfeld 73 (-3) [17], Ross McGowan (ENG) 69 (+1) [17]
Par - Le Roux Ferreira 73 69, Ryan Tipping 71 71, Graham van der Merwe 73 69, Steve Surry (ENG) 69 73
+1 - Erik van Rooyen 73 70, Grant Veenstra 73 70, Dylan Frittelli 73 70, James Heath (ENG) 71 72, Colin Nel 69 74, Madalitso Muthiya (ZAM) 69 74,Daan Huizing (NED) 69 74, Soren Hansen (DEN) 70 (+2) [15]
+2 - Matthew Baldwin (ENG) 72 72, Lorenzo Gagli (ITA) 73 71
+3 - Desvonde Botes 71 74, Alan McLean (SCO) 70 75, Jake Roos 75 70
+4 - Peter Whiteford(SCO) 68 78, Hendrik Buhrmann 76 70, Vaughn Groenewald 75 71, Jack Doherty (SCO) 76 70
+5 - Brett Liddle 75 72
+6 - John Parry (ENG) 76 72, Neo Thubisi 74 74
+7 - Peter Hedblom (SWE) 74 75
+10 - Michiel Bothma 77 75
+11 - JC Ritchie 77 (+5) [15]
+12 - Alex Haindl 78 76, Mpho Mafishe 76 (+7) [14]

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