Mark murders back nine for Cape Town Open lead

On his second loop on Friday Mark Williams made eight birdies and one drop for a 29-stroke back nine at Royal Cape Golf Club. He’ll take a five-stroke lead into the weekend at the Lion of Africa Cape Town Open.

“I hit a good tee shot on 10 and had my stock-standard wedge coming in, the same shot I had yesterday, and I hit it to four feet and made the putt. It just gave me that feeling and then I started hitting it close. I had control over the golf ball, made a couple of really good putts and just enjoyed the ride,” he said.

Williams shot a seven-under-par back nine and went on to sign for 67 with only five pars on the card. He’ll lead going into the weekend for the first time in his career, but victory was not yet in his thoughts.

“It feels great to lead and I think I’ve got a pretty good game plan. There’s opportunities to take driver on, but you have respect a lot of the par-fives, and it’s tough to get it close for two. You’ve got to take your chances when you can get them,” he said. The 28-year-old turned at two-over and looked as if he would let his overnight lead slip, but that wasn’t how things played out. He was focused on enjoying keeping his head clear for each shot.

“I enjoy playing in the wind, it kind of keeps me in the present. The most important thing is getting the ball in play and then hitting the next one. On the less windy courses I don’t seem to focus on one shot at a time, so the wind seems to help me,” said the Modderfontein Golf Club professional.

Saturday is moving day, but not for Williams, who’ll be looking to consolidate and prepare for the final round.

“I’m just trying to get out there and tomorrow do the same thing. It’s always the back nine on the last day that’s going to make all the difference and hopefully I can still be up there. I’m just trying to take it one shot at a time. I want to enjoy the moment – the more times I can get myself up here, the more comfortable I’m going to be,” he said.

Chasing the lead were Jake Roos and Dean Burmester, who both shot 67 to move into a share of second at six-under-par. Looming at five-under were Jaco van Zyl, Attie Schwartzel and Keith Horne.

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