Garcia falters as Oosthuizen rallies
Sergio Garcia espoused the virtues of patience after his four-shot lead was trimmed to just one at the halfway mark of the Nedbank Golf Challenge on Friday.
Garcia, who is on nine-under, says the demanding Gary Player Country Club exacts a high toll but rewards those who bide their time.
“The course is playing tough. The greens are getting firmer, the pins were tight and not easy to get close to. You have to be patient on this golf course.”
But South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen has started making significant gains. Oosthuizen, who carded a five-under 67, would have been in the lead had it not been for the only blemish on his card – a doublebogey six on the eighth.
“Over the years it has always been a tough tee shot on my eye. It was a little into the breeze and I knew I had to hit a good three-iron and probably leave myself with a five-iron in,” he said about missing a putt. His game however seems to be clicking into place and he must now have a genuine chance of winning this title for the first time.
Finland’s Mikko Korhonen is two shots back from Oosthuizen, while South Africa’s Dylan Frittelli is in a group of players on four-under.
Frittelli carded a five-under on Friday, and is in a group that includes England’s Lee Westwood and Aaron Rai, as well as Ireland’s Shane Lowry.
Defending champion Branden Grace is on three-under with fellow South African Darren Fichardt, France’s Mike Lorenzo-Vera, England’s Matt Wallace, Italy’s Andrea Pavan, Belgium’s Thomas Detry and China’s Haotong Li.
Tournament favourite Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland is one-under, eight shots off the lead.