Tristen Strydom carded a four-under-par 68 on Thursday to take a one-stroke lead after the first round of the Vodacom Origins of Golf event at Humewood Golf Club.
Strydom was first out, but that was no advantage on a day on which the wind blew incessantly. To start with, he didn’t have the rain that came later in the morning and stayed for the afternoon, and he made five birdies and a bogey to lead Richard Joubert by one. Botswana’s Stuart Smith was in third on two-under, with James Kamte and Jake Redman sharing fourth on one-under.
Strydom made a bogey on the opening hole, but he got things under control very soon after that as he made birdie on the fifth. A good birdie on the fifth kept up the momentum, and he picked up three more on the homeward nine – two on three of the par-fives on 11 and 17, and one on the par-three 12th.
There were only five players under par in the opening round, with a further seven on level-par. There was a group of 12 players on one-over in a share of 13th.
Strydom, who started his season by having to qualify for the opening tournament, the Kit Kat Group Pro-Am, in which he came ninth, has had seven other top-10 finishes, and he shared second behind George Coetzee in the opening Vodacom Origins of Golf tournament at De Zalze in the Western Cape.