Glendower Golf Club is a South African gem and it proved to be a great test of golf for the Big Easy Tour professionals on Tuesday. Tyrone Ryan was up to the challenge and ground out an opening 71 at the parklands track to tie for lead at the close of round one.
“I made a couple of silly mistakes and this is the type of course that will make you pay for that, but other than that my game was solid. It wasn’t a very scorable round today, so I was pleased to shoot one-under,” he said.
The 25-year-old was one of four players to break par on Tuesday and his share of the lead has come at a crucial time in the Big Easy Tour season. This week marks the final event of the regular season, after which the top 30 on the Order of Merit progress to the Tour Championship at The Els Club, Copperleaf.
Ryan set out on Tuesday with the Tour Championship in the back of his mind and ground out a one-under-par first round in tricky scoring conditions. His four years on tour helped him to stay patient when the going got tough.
“My game is feeling good and in winter it’s quite hard to score, so my spirits are high after the way I’ve been playing recently. The Tour Championship is certainly on my mind and it’s a great tournament for us, so I’ll be looking for a good result this week to try and make it in,” he said.
The Bryanston Country Club member took advantage of the par fives on his way to the top spot, which he shared with Lean Boezaart, Gert Myburgh and Drikus van der Walt.
“I managed to birdie three of the four par-fives today,” said Ryan. “It was a case of hitting it up to the green and then trying to get up and down for birdie.
“It’s nice to shoot under par at the start of any event, especially in the heart of winter when the ball runs. In these conditions it can be difficult to put the right spin on the ball and stop it where you’d like, so that adds to the frustration. I’m really pleased to walk away with today’s score.”