Genzon Golf Club is a good test, although France’s Alexander Levy had the round of his life on Friday – he shot 62 to lead by six shots on 14-under-par. While Kruger’s three-under-par total is a far cry, there are still 36 holes to play and the young South African is firing.
Kruger broke through on the European Tour at the co-sanctioned Avantha Masters, an Indian tournament shared with the Asian Tour. That was in 2012, and he went on to finish third on the Order of Merit.
The 27-yer-old had a great time at the China Open in 2012, where he carded 66 during round one and went on to tie for 18th. That course was Binhai Lake but the good memories of China will stay with him during the next two days in the far east.
This year Kruger’s been popping up on leaderboards all over the place and his four top-25s, which include victory at the Zimbabwe Open, are a good sign that he’s ready to compete in Europe.
Also moving into a share of 15th was Hennie Otto (pictured right), who carded rounds of 70 and 71 heading into the weekend. The 37-year-old veteran has played his way into contention at several European Tour events during the past six months, but hasn’t been able to make it all click under the pressure of the final round. Otto is no slouch and has three European Tour victories to show for it.
But the South African to watch on Friday was Kruger. He made six birdies during the round and shifted up a gear ahead of moving day, which will show whether he’s ready to win again.