Swanepoel leads the way in Africa

Chris Swanepoel was the early pace-setter on a delayed day one of the Africa Open in East London, which saw more than 90 minutes lost at the start due to poor visibility.

Chris Swanepoel was the early pace-setter on a delayed day one of the Africa Open in East London, which saw more than 90 minutes lost at the start due to poor visibility.

The 26-year-old moved two shots clear on six under par through 11 holes to lead by a shot from fellow South African Martin Maritz, who was at the same stage.

Englishmen Miles Tunnicliff and Robert Dinwiddie were in a group of seven players on four under – both men were through 13 – with the others on that score Australian Wade Ormsby (through 15), Mark

of Chile (10), Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Gonnet (10) as well as locals Doug McGuigan (nine) and Oliver Bekker (12).

Play was stopped at 6.40am local time (4.40am Irish Time), just 10 minutes after the first group began, because of a lack of visibility.

With mist and rain hanging over the course, the group – Michael du Toit, Ormsby and Manuel Quiros – could not play their second shots forcing organisers to stop play until it resumed again at 0815am (6.15am Irish Time).

And when play did restart, Swanepoel stormed through the first five holes of the East London Golf Club, with three birdies and an eagle on the par-five third.

He then picked up further shots on the eighth and the 11th with a bogey on the ninth pegging him back.

Amongst the high-profile names that are playing in the co-sanctioned European and Sunshine Tour event, Open champion Louis Oosthuizen was on three under through 11 holes with nine others on the same score.

Northern Ireland’s Darren Clarke was on one under, also after playing 11 holes, with his round so far including two bogeys and eagle and a birdie.

Former major winner Retief Goosen made a woeful start to his day and was on two over through 11.

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