The four-time European Tour winner started on the 10th and was quick to get the scoring underway. He made birdie at 11, but his eagle at 13 really got things moving for the world number 192.
He made further gains at 14, 16 and 17 to turn in 31, but a quiet second loop meant that the 13-time Sunshine Tour champ had to settle for an early share of fourth.
Fichardt has had a quiet season on the European Tour and ranks 116th in the Race to Dubai. He came into the week looking for a top result and achieving that goal became all the more realistic as he played his way around Genzon Golf Club in four-under-par.
Leader Wen-yi Huang only took up the game of golf in his 20s after spending time working on construction sites, but on Thursday it was all golf from the 34-year-old, who made the clubhouse in 66 and set out a one-shot lead over Peter Uihlein and Byeong hun An.
Garth Mulroy was in with a shout after carding 69 for his first round at Genzon, where the 36-year-old played superbly, in spite of being tripped up by a triple bogey at the par-five second hole.
Outside of that one blemish it was birdie blitzing from the 2011 Alfred Dunhill Championship winner, who shared eighth place at the end of his round.
You don’t win it on the first day, but you can lose it, and on Thursday Fichardt and Mulroy secured their chance for the coming 54 holes.