JOHANNESBURG (AP) — Big-hitting South African James Hart du Preez carded a 9-under 63 to take a one-shot lead after the first round of the European tour’s Steyn City Championship in Johannesburg on Thursday.
Du Preez raised the prospect of a 59 when he was 11 under with two holes to play but finished with two bogeys. He was one shot ahead of compatriots Jaco Ahlers and Shaun Norris and Italy’s Nino Bertasio.
A 59 wouldn’t have counted as a tie of the tour record, though, as players benefited from preferred lies at Steyn City after heavy rain in recent days.
Du Preez, who is listed as 6-foot-9 by the tour, had two eagles and seven birdies in his opening round.
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