He’s as calm a customer as you will ever find on a golf course, and Jean Hugo cruised his way to a five-under-par 67 in the second round of the R3.75-million Dimension Data Pro-Am at Fancourt on Friday to be a menacing two strokes off the lead.
He moved to a halfway total of nine-under-par, trailing leader Adilson Da Silva, who also played on the Outeniqua course. Every player in the field plays a round on each of Outeniqua, Montagu and The Links at Fancourt, and the final round will be played on Montagu after a cut to 65 players and ties has been made.
“I’ve had two solid rounds,” said Hugo. “I’ve made one bogey in two rounds and missed just one fairway – so I’m just hitting it well. Maybe a few more putts tomorrow and I could shoot a really good score out there.
“The greens have changed a bit over the last few years, and it’s a bit tough for me to get the ball to the hole. It’s a bit slower because of all the rain we’ve had, but apart from that, I’m playing very well,” he added.
On a day on which many players had to complete first rounds which were interrupted by rain, Da Silva was the man who matched the best round of the day with his six-under-par 66 to add to his opening 67 on Montagu. That moved him to 11-under for the tournament.
With Hugo two shots back, veteran Keith Horne charged through the field at The Links, his brilliant seven-under-par 66 there lifting him to eight-under for the tournament, three shots back and in striking distance of the lead.
There were three players on seven-under-par at halfway, one of whom was 2012 champion Oliver Bekker, who limped a little coming home after starting his second round on the 10th on Outeniqua and turning in four-under 32. A birdie and a bogey punctuated pars all the way in for him.
Also on seven-under after the second round was Francois Coetzee, who has not been able to qualify for the first two tournaments of the year – the Joburg Open and the Africa Open. So a good finish at Fancourt would represent a major boost to his third season as a Sunshine Tour professional.
And Trevor Fisher Jnr had a good five-under-par 68 on The Links. It was a round which included an eagle three on the 13th, five birdies and two bogeys. He’s placed himself well to turn around his poor start to the 2014 Sunshine Tour season which has two missed cuts in the first two events.
Both Da Silva and Hugo will play their third round on The Links, and they will need to be every bit as good as they have been so far to keep ahead of the field.
“I know it’s The Links tomorrow,” said Hugo, “but we’re just going to have to knuckle down and do our best. It’s a little different there. It’s tough if the wind blows – it’s tough even if it doesn’t blow – but I think it’s wide enough and if you keep it in the fairways, you can still score.”