Wales’ Jamie Donaldson shot a 10-birdie 63 on Friday to share the SA Open second-round lead on 134 with Christiaan Bezuidenhout at Gary Player Country Club in Sun City.
South African Bezuidenhout, winner of the Alfred Dunhill Championship final weekend, carded a second successive 67 over the 7,834-yard (7,163-metre) format, the longest on the European Tour.
Crowded on the high
They are two photographs forward of South Africans Dean Burmester (69) and Dylan Frittelli (68), who tied for fifth on the Masters final month.
Local hopes Ruan Korb (72) and Jacques Kruyswijk (72), Canadian Aaron Cockerill (68), Joost Luiten (67) from the Netherlands and Austrian Matthias Schwab (72) share fifth place on 139.
On a day when many opponents battled with lightning-fast greens within the spectator-less match because of the coronavirus, Donaldson stood out as he stormed into rivalry after a gap spherical 71.
He birdied one and three, had his lone blemish of the day at 4 with a bogey 5, then birdied 5, six and 9 for an outward 32, 4 below par.
He birdied 10, 13, 15 and the ultimate two holes to fail by only one shot to equal the course report of 62, which Lee Westwood from England set in 2011.
Donaldson, 45, has received 3 times on the European Tour, with his final success coming in 2014 on the Czech Masters.
Bezuidenhout in nice kind
Bezuidenhout, the bottom ranked contender after climbing 20 locations to 41 on the earth following his Dunhill triumph, birdied 5 holes and didn’t drop a shot.
He missed a brief putt at 18 that may have given him the outright lead as he seeks a 3rd European triumph after the 2019 Andalucia Masters and the Dunhill.
Frittelli had a 5 birdie-one bogey spherical and missed a brief birdie putt at 18 that may have taken him inside one shot of the frontrunners.
Burmester had probably the most topsy-turvy spherical among the many high 4 on the leaderboard, carding an eagle, 4 birdies and three bogeys.
South African large hitter Wilco Nienaber, who slammed a tee shot 439 yards through the Joburg Open two weeks in the past, had a disappointing 74 after too many visits to the tough and trails the leaders by 9 photographs.
SA open second spherical leaderboard
134 – Christiaan Bezuidenhout 67-67, Jamie Donaldson (WAL) 71-63
136 – Dean Burmester 67-69, Dylan Frittelli 68-68
139 – Aaron Cockerill (CAN) 71-68, Ruan Korb 67-72, Jacques Kruyswijk 67-72, Joost Luiten (NED) 72-67, Matthias Schwab (AUT) 67-72
140 – Hennie du Plessis 70-70
141 – Peter Karmis (GRE) 72-69, JC Ritchie 70-71, Brandon Stone 73-68, Scott Vincent (ZIM) 72-69, Justin Walters 69-72
143 – Wilco Nienaber 69-74
© Agence France-Presse