Johan sets good pace in QSchool marathon

Johan Etsebeth started off Sunshine Tour Qualifying School at a good pace when he shot 68 at Schoeman Park Golf Club on Tuesday.

“I’m hitting it well enough to succeed this week. This event is a marathon, it’s not a sprint, and this was a good start,” he said.

After eight consecutive pars the 31-year-old highlighted his round with an eagle at the par-five 9th, which was the 18th hole of his round. “I was very patient and it eventually paid off with an eagle. I took a rescue off the tee and it left me a ¾ seven-iron into the wind. I hit it to 10 foot and then boxed the putt. It was a great way to end the day,” said Etsebeth.

His front nine, which began at the 10th, was a far busier affair – he carded four birdies and two bogeys before turning at two-under.

The Pecanwood Golf Estate professional began his round birdie, bogey, birdie and indicated that he had not yet settled. “It started off quickly for me – I started on 10 and birdied straight away. I made a silly bogey on 11. Birdied 12 and felt like I was miss-hitting shots, but they all landed in play.”

He made further birdies at the 15th and 17th and moved three strokes below par.

The surge was cut short by a bogey at the 18th, which is the toughest hole on the course, and Etsebeth turned at two-under.

He was unable to improve against par through eight of his back stretch and said: “I was hitting it solid – I hit every green – but I couldn’t hole a putt.”

The eagle on the 9th was a reward for his patience and not only led to his 68, but also set a strong pace for his tour card campaign.

“This week my game is feeling better and my misses are much closer to the target. I feel ready to do well in Bloemfontein. I’m hitting it very well.”

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