Tyrone jack of all trades at Kempton

Tyrone Ryan felt that every aspect of his game was decent on Thursday, which helped him into a share of the halfway lead at the Sunshine Big Easy Tour’s Kempton Park tournament.

“My game is feeling good – I’ve had some good finishes in the last while, which has boosted my confidence. Everything was just there today – it’s all working together, and I’m somehow keeping it on the golf course,” he said.

The 2011 Big Easy Irene winner kept bogeys off his card and reached the clubhouse at six-under, sharing the top spot with Teboho Sefatsa, Martin du Toit and Toto Thimba, Jnr.

“It was a decent start,” said Ryan. “I just kept it in play and made a couple of putts, and I played the par fives well. No scruffy golf – I didn’t make a bogey and that definitely does help – it’s a good start to the tournament.”

The 23-year-old finished in a share of ninth at the Golden Pilsener Zimbabwe Open a fortnight ago and carried that good form through to Kempton Park. A birdie at the first marked a quick start for the youngster, who kept the momentum going with good scrambling throughout the round.

“I made a couple of good up-and-downs and had one chip-in, which also helped. I didn’t hit the ball great, but I got around and got the score in, which counts,” he said.

The course was there for the taking and the diversity of the Bryanston Golf Club professional’s overall skill led to six birdies throughout the round. He was optimistic about taking the lead and building his game, and said: “This is a great tour to get to play golf. I’ve had some good rounds this year, and you just have to build on those. This is a great tour to build on, and I am looking forward to going for a win tomorrow.”

Thimba also saved a few pars during the round. The Big Easy Houghton winner has enjoyed a run of good form, most recently finishing tied sixth at the Investec Royal Swazi Open after having to qualify.

“I have great confidence with my game at the moment – everything is just going in!” He said. “I’ve been hitting the ball straight and close, so tomorrow I just have to be patient. I am playing with a lot of good players, but I have a chance to win again, so I have to keep it up.”

Du Toit is a Sunshine Tour veteran and emphasized the value of the Big Easy Tour. “We see these tournaments as a great way to prepare. I’m a full-time coach, and we don’t get to play and contend too often, but this allows us to do that. This really helps get the game in shape and gives us a better chance on the Sunshine Tour,” he said.

His 66 included two drops, but he was otherwise pleased with the round, in which he made four birdies on either side of the turn. “I’m pretty happy with that round, and tomorrow I’m going to try to do the same thing – hit a couple of putts in the hole and see where it takes us,” he said.

Sefatsa, who started on the 10th, overcame two drops with an impressive eight birdies during the round. The soft Kempton Park greens allowed the professionals to fire at the flags, and Sefatsa capitalized on the opportunity. “I started off great and just kept on going,” he said. “Began the round with three birdies through four holes, and then I made four straight birdies to finish. I played pretty solid.”

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