SA duo leads MCB Indian Ocean Amateur

Gauteng North amateur Jason Smith and Limpopo junior Hennie du Plessis share the second round lead in the MCB Indian Ocean Amateur Golf Open in Mauritius.

Du Plessis thrived in the windless conditions at Tamarina Golf Club on Saturday to fire a one-under-par 71, but overnight leader Smith wilted as the mercury rose above 30 degrees Celsius.

The reigning SA Amateur Stroke Play champion carded a three over 75 to join Du Plessis on two-over-par 146.

The pair leads by one stroke from Mauritian number one seed, Ludovic Bax, who carded a 73.

South Africa’s number five ranked NJ Arnoldi improved three shots on an opening 76 to take fourth on his own at five over 149.

“Overall, a much better effort, especially on the par-fives,” said the Ekurhuleni amateur, who finished four strokes clear from local favourite, Phil Minkley.

“After scoring a birdie on the first hole, I knew the day was going to go well,” said the former Mauritius Junior champion, who vaulted into the top 10 with a one over 73.

“I also had the fortune to be playing in a very competitive group, and we fed nicely off each other. Overall a very satisfying day.”

Top Indian amateurs Arjun Sharma and Simarjeet Singh carded respective rounds of 78 and 83.

Sharma held on for a top 10 spot, but Singh slumped to 12th on the 36-hole leaderboard.

The ladies also had a tough time dealing with the hot weather conditions.

Overnight leader Nathalie Serret held on to pole position with an 83, but the island’s number two ranked player was joined by compatriot Francine Delloye, who carded a 78 to register the low round of the day.

The leaders are tied at 18-over-par 162, four shots clear of Alexandra de Lavigne.

“Without a breeze, the conditions were very tough for the field,” said Christophe Cure, President of the Mauritius Golf Federation.

“The leaders are quite bunched up and the tight leaderboard promises to deliver an exciting finish to the tournament on Sunday.”

Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of the South African Golf Association.

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