Burmester gets in the hunt in Tenerife Open

Apr 29, 2021 | Featured, South Africans abroad

Dean Burmester made nine birdies on Thursday in the opening round of the European Tour’s Tenerife Open to move into a share of second place.

It was a position he shared with last week’s European Tour winner, Garrick Higgo, as their eight-under-par 66s were one shot off the pace set by Denmark’s Thorbjorn Oleson. Alexander Bjork of Sweden and America’s John Catlin joined the South African duo on eight-under, and they were in turn one shot ahead of four players on seven-under.

Burmester used his length off the tee to dominate the course, reaching an average of 355 yards per drive in the opening round. In fact, all that he was missing in his game was accuracy off the tee, and that clearly didn’t matter that much as he hit just a quarter of the fairways. Together with reaching two-thirds of the greens in regulation, his 23 putts for the round got him to his low score.

Burmester birdied the first but gave the shot back on the third before turning in 32 with gains on the sixth, seventh and ninth. He also picked up shots on the 12th and 13th and then holed a long putt on the 16th and got down in two from the fringe at the last.

It was arguably the best round of the day, as it was achieved in the more difficult afternoon conditions.

Higgo got off to the fast start that his closing 63 in the previous week’s tournament suggested he might, as turned in 30 – with the help of three birdies in his first five holes, as well as an eagle on the 13th – but a bogey on the second slowed his progress before he picked up shots on the third, sixth and seventh.

Louis de Jager also got the good start he was looking for with a five-under-par opener, putting him in a share of 16th place together with Justin Harding. Justin Walters and Haydn Porteous were on three-under, while Zander Lombard carded a level-par 71.

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