Van Zyl back with a bang

The Star Early Edition - - SPORT -

JACO van Zyl, cel­e­brated his re­turn to Qatar in some style with an open­ing five-un­der-par 67 in the first round of The Euro­pean Tour’s Com­mer­i­cal Bank Qatar Masters at Doha Golf Club yes­ter­day.

He made six birdies and a bo­gey to put him­self into early con­tention in a tour­na­ment he hasn’t played in for some years.

“I nor­mally just go to Dubai, and fig­ured I haven’t done the full Desert Swing in a long time. I’ve got fairly good mem­o­ries of Qatar, so here we are,” he said.

He started his round with a flour­ish, with three birdies in the open­ing four holes, but he dropped a shot on the sixth. He got things run­ning again on the back nine, with three birdies in suc­ces­sion from the 12th to the 14th. “I got off to a nice start this morn­ing and just man­aged to build on it,” he said. “At 10, you al­ways kind of feel that’s one to take ad­van­tage of. I parred there, and I just missed a very make­able birdie putt on 11. “So you know, to get one on 12 kind of got the mo­men­tum go­ing, and made a nice one on 13 and hit a great shot into 14. A lit­tle dis­ap­pointed. Al­ways feels like you’ve left one out there, if you don’t at least get one play­ing 16, 17, 18,” he added. He’s rel­ish­ing a good start to his 2017 Euro­pean Tour cam­paign. “It’s been solid,” he said. “No fire­works. Pretty much the whole sea­son last year, I didn’t miss many cuts, but not very good fin­ishes. So, I’m go­ing to try and build on that this year.” – ANA

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