Daniel Brooks of England carded his second successive bogey-free round on Saturday as he completed the second round of the Nelson Mandela Championship presented by ISPS Handa in six-under-par 64.
The €1-million tournament co-sanctioned by the Sunshine Tour and the European Tour at Mount Edgecombe Country Club has been hit by rain delays, and has been shortened to 54 holes with the final round scheduled to start on Saturday morning immediately after the delayed second round was completed.
“It was quite nice going out there today and hitting a few nice shots early on and getting a bit of confidence going,” he said. “I holed a couple of nice putts again, so hopefully we’ll carry that on this afternoon.”
Brooks was the first-round leader after he carded an eight-under-par 62 on a course reduced to a par of 70 instead of its normal 71, with 293-metre (320-yard) par-four fifth converted into a 130-metre (142-yard) par-three because the fairway was so waterlogged.
He held a three-stroke edge over Spaniard Jorge Campillo, who signed for a sensational 11-under-par 59 on Friday, Matthew Baldwin of England and South African Dawie van der Walt, who won the Tshwane Open in February and is pushing for his second European Tour title. Oliver Bekker and Branden Grace are four strokes off Brooks’ lead on 10-under-par in a share of fifth place.
Brooks knows he will be chased as he goes in search of a maiden professional victory – indeed, a first finish inside the top 10 on the European Tour. “It will be good fun,” he said. “I haven’t been in this position before, so I’ll take whatever happens, because it’s all a learning curve.”