Derik Ferreira bogeyed his first hole in the Investec Royal Swazi Open Qualifier on Tuesday, he quickly got things back on track to lead 10 players into the main event as he finished on 18 points.
The tournament is played on a modified stableford system, with eight points for an albatross, five for an eagle, two for a birdie and none for par. A point is deducted for every birdie and two for double or worse.
After his poor start on the 10th, he eagled the 461-metre par-five 12th, birdied 14 and 14 and he turned in three-under 33 and eight points.
Two more birdies on one and three kept the momentum going, and three birdies in a row from five to seven saw him close in five-under 31 and 10 more points to the good.
He shared the lead with Johan Bekker, who had two bogeys and two eagles in his seven-under-par 65.
Divan Gerber was on 12 points in third place, with Mark Williams on 10 and Joe Nawanga on nine in fourth and fifth respectively.
Vikesh Singh, Wynand Dingle, PG van Zyl and Jeff Inglis were on seven points, with Mark Fensham filling the final spot on six points ahead of Wandile Gininda and Patrick Spindler, who were also on six points but beaten in a play-off.
The R850,000 tournament gets underway at the Royal Swazi Country Club outside the Swaziland capital, Mbabane on Wednesday, and will be played over 72 holes on the picturesque 6,140-metre par-72 layout in the Ezulwini Valley.