He turned in 35 after starting on the 10th at Bloemfontein Golf Club on Friday, and then amateur Kevin Rundle made an eagle three on the third to ignite his round of 68 which moved him to 11-under-par in the 2015 Sunshine Tour Qualifying School.
Rundle, 22, who plays out of Kloof Country Club in KwaZulu-Natal, climbed to within sight of the summit of the leaderboard in the 90-hole marathon being played at Bloemfontein Golf Club and Schoeman Park Golf Club as he moved to 11-under ahead of the 72-hole cut to the top 60 players and ties ahead of the final round sprint in search of 30 Sunshine Tour cards.
“I’m pretty stoked,” said the man who won the 2013 KwaZulu-Natal under-23 title. “I was really nervous this morning. I didn’t hit the ball to well on the range, but when I turned after the first nine I felt very good.
“The eagle on three really settled the nerves. I had a great drive down the fairway, and hit a pitching wedge to about 10 feet and just rolled the putt in.”
It is his second attempt at qualifying for the Sunshine Tour, and he has found things a little easier this time around – but not much. “This tournament is unlike anything else,” he said. “I’ve never played a tournament that makes me this nervous. The first day, I was shaking the whole way around. It’s good to know I can control the nerves a little bit. Today was probably the second most nervous I’ve been.”
He missed the cut by four shots last year, but, despite his nerves, he won’t miss out this time. “Last year was a good experience,” he said. “It taught me a lot on how to control everything. I’ve got a little edge now over the guys who are playing the first time this year. Last year, I was nervous every day.
“I reckon it’s good to come and experience it – of course come to try and get your card, but learn how to handle it for the next time.”
The job of getting his card is nearly completed, but not entirely. “I’ve got to keep concentrating and focus on putting another good round together,” he said.