Ritchie shoots 66 in Scotland, trails by 3

Jul 29, 2022 | Featured, South Africans abroad

JC Ritchie carded a bogey-free six-under-par 66 to become the leading South African after round one of the DP World Tour’s Hero Open held at St. Andrews in Scotland, three strokes behind the leading Sean Crocker.

Ritchie made eight pars and a solitary birdie on the front nine of the golf course but turned things around with some display on the back nine. He started the back nine with a birdie on 10 and made pars on 11 and 12. Ritchie then fired in three birdies in succession from the 13th through to the 15th before closing off with another birdie on 18.

Fellow Sunshine Tour player, Adilson da Silva, also fired in a 66 to trail by three while sharing the 13th spot on the leaderboard with Ritchie and eight others. Bryce Easton’sfive-under 67 was solid enough to see him in a share of 23rd. Easton’sunblemished round will give him confidence ahead of the second round, and an experienced campaigner like him will not want to miss an opportunity to climb up the leaderboard.

Veteran Darren Fichardt is a short further, thanks to an opening 68. Along with fellow South Africans Jacques Kruyswijk and Louis de Jager, Fichardt finds himself in a 22-way share of the 37th spot. Brandon Stone signed for a 69 on day one in Scotland while Justin Walters signed for a 70.

Richard Sterne and the big-hitting Wilco Nienaber both shot 71s. Oliver Bekker remains level-par going into the second round while Jacques Blaauw shot one-over.On two-over-par after the first round, Haydn Porteous will look for improved performance in round two, and hopefully, play himself to a decent position on the leaderboard.

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