Loads of big numbers in bad weather at Sun City
SUN CITY: It’s well-known that the Gary Player Country Club is one of the toughest and most demanding courses in South Africa and it played true to that description yesterday during the second round of the 2017 Nedbank Golf Challenge.
For once it was the wind that caused all sorts of problems for the 71 players in the field after the withdrawal of American Peter Uilhein early in the day, with several players posting scores they’d rather want to forget. A strong swirling wind that virtually blew all day combined with the notorious rough, fast greens and tough pin positions made for a day of very challenging golf. And the scores showed just how difficult it was. Only 12 players broke par, with many posting big, big numbers. England’s very promising Jordan Smith, who challenged at the SA Open early in January, shot an eight-over-par 80, with seven bogeys, a double-bogey and just one birdie.
Three players posted seven-over par 79s; South Africa’s Brandon Stone who is at 11-overpar at the halfway stage after a 76 on the first day, last year’s runner-up Jeunghun Wang, who’s at eight-over-par, and Italy’s Renato Paratore, who is seven-over.
Only eight eagles were registered on the day, with the second, ninth and 10th the “easiest” to score on, while the toughest hole was the 411m par-four third. The scoring average there was 4.46 with just one birdie made on the hole and 26 bogeys and four doubles. Two eights were pencilled in on the scorecards of Ireland’s Shane Lowry, on the parfive 14th, and Denmark’s Soren Kjeldsen, at the par-four 11th.