27th June 2019 | Sunshine Tour
Cracking start hands Ferreira a five-shot lead at Karen
Zimbabwe’s Stephen Ferreira made a staggering nine birdies and an eagle en route to a 10-under-par 62 round one score to take a five-shot lead of the second edition of the KCB Karen Masters in Nairobi.
Back-to-back birdies from the first through to the fourth hole set the tone for Ferreira, who plays under the Portuguese flag, before he made a bogey on the fifth. Another birdie on the eight, and he turned in 32 before making three consecutive pars.
“I’m very happy and I couldn’t have asked for a better start,” he said after his impressive round. “I’ve been going through a bit of a rough patch; I would have a good week and then a bad week. But, after Sun City, I just went and pretty much played every single day. Hardly spent any time on the range and did a lot of putting, mainly, and it seems to be paying off so far.”
As impressive as that front nine was, Ferreira’s homeward stretch was also something to marvel at. Birdies on the par-five 12th and the 13th holes soon made their way into his card and after making par on the 14th, he made eagle on the par-five 15th, birdies on the 16 and 17th holes before closing off with a par.
He credited his driver for the brilliant round around the Karen Country Club. “I hit my driver very well,” he said, “I normally do. If it lets me down, my game kind of goes off a bit but today, I picked shots and hit them.”
Ferreira, having teed off in the afternoon, had what seemed to be the best score of the day to deal with, a five-under-par 67 set by the young Garrick Higgo, Neil Schietekat, Thabiso Ngcobo and Kenya’s own Greg Snow.
While Schietekat’s round was blemish-free, it was Ngcobo’s which was a little more eventful. The Gary Player Class member made seven birdies on the day but was let down by the bogeys he made on the fourth and 10th holes.
“I had a few lucky breaks today,” he said, “but that’s how it goes in golf. I was fortunate that the round went well. I just stayed patient the whole day; telling myself ‘next hole, next hole’ and that worked for me. I hit a few wild ones but luckily, I was just staying in play and that’s what you have to do on this course.”