Jacques poised to strike at Affinity Cup

Jacques Blaauw crouched into position with a second-round 69 at the Lost City Golf Club on Wednesday, where he took the Nedbank Affinity Cup lead early in the day.


“I’m happy with the 69 today and it keeps me in the hunt for it. Hopefully this was my ‘bad’ round, because the scores are out there and I’d like to shoot a deep one tomorrow,” he said.


Blaauw has brimmed with confidence since winning two Vodacom Origins of Golf titles in June. This week at Sun City he carded an eight-under-par 64 on Tuesday to lead from day one.


“The two wins just made my confidence sky high and with a round like yesterday I’m happy once again,” he said. “The day after a low 60s round is always a tough one. If you can shoot anything under par it’s good.”


He compared his three-under-par second round to taking a deep breath before a dive. Two shots clear of the morning field and ready for win number three, Blaauw looked to the final round with zest.


“I had a few tough shots and a couple of three-putts today. If you are not playing with your A-game and you still manage to stay in the mix then you are doing the right things. I’m very happy at 11-under-par after two rounds,” he said.


Ulrich van den Berg has been on a run of good form since his victory at the BMG Classic three weeks ago. On Wednesday he shot 68 and reached nine-under-par for the tournament, which gave him sole second in the clubhouse.


“It was nice and consistent today, and that’s how it’s been for the last while. When it’s going like this it does feel a little easier than when you are struggling, so I’m trying to stay patient and not get ahead of myself,” he said.


The seven-time winner knew what to expect from the final round on Thursday.


“I’m two behind right now and I’ll probably be a few more behind by the end of the day. But some wind tomorrow and a good round and you’ll be right up there,” he explained.


Defending champion Trevor Fisher Junior showed his affinity for the course by making seven birdies on Wednesday to climb from 43rd to sixth. Five shots stand between him and the lead, but bouncing into contention has done wonders for his confidence.


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