Burmester leads SA challenge at Gran Canaria

Dean Burmester carded a five-under par 65 on Thursday in the opening round of the European Tour’s Gran Canaria Lopesan Open at Meloneras Golf in Gran Canaria, Spain.

He made six birdies and a bogey to move to within two shots of the lead, which was held by Maximilian Kieffer of Germany, Dutchman Joost Luiten, France’s Robin Roussel and Denmark’s Joachim B Hansen. There were seven players on six-under-par in a share of fifth, while Burmester was in a 13-way share of 12th.

Also on five-under after the first round were South Africans Justin Harding and Garrick Higgo, as well as Welshman Rhys Enoch who won the Sunshine Tour’s 2021 opener, the Kit Kat Group Pro-Am. Harding made seven birdies in his round, and dropped two shots, while Higgo also had seven birdies, with a double-bogey on the par-four ninth.

Burmester’s score was in large part due to some really good putting, as he had 25 putts in his round, well below his season average of 29.2.

Behind those three, Zander Lombard on four-under was in a share of 25th, Haydn Porteous had a good opener of two-under and Justin Walters started out with a one-under-par 69 to be in a share of 84th with Louis de Jager.

Hansen was the only one of the leading four to go bogey-free but Luiten was the man to produce the fireworks, making the 14th hole-in-one of the 2021 Race to Dubai and 10th in the last six events, whn he holed out at the 15th.

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