Smith in control at MCB Indian Ocean Amateur

Gauteng North amateur Jason Smith took pole position in the first round of the MCB Indian Ocean Amateur Golf Open in Mauritius, while Limpopo junior Hennie du Plessis finished a close third at Tamarina Golf Club on Friday.

The 20-year-old TuksSport Golf Academy member took advantage of the sunny scoring conditions at the challenging championship layout to pull away from the chasing pack with an opening one-under-par 71.

Smith, the reigning South African Amateur Stroke Play champion, leads by three strokes from Mauritian number one seed, Ludovic Bax.

Meanwhile Du Plessis carded an opening 75 to tie for into third with local player Raphael Durieux.

NJ Arnoldi from Ekurhuleni was looking good until he dropped four shots on the par fives.

The country’s number five ranked amateur registered a 76 to claim a share of sixth with top ranked Indian amateurs, Arjun Sharma and Simarjeet Singh from India, as well as Mauritian second seed, Rakesh Channoo and Loic Heurtin.

Nathalie Serret, the island’s number two ranked amateur, opened with a 79 to lead the Ladies Category.

She finished four shots ahead of tournament favourite, Ginger Delacretaz, ranked first for the event.

“The course is in excellent condition and the players enjoyed the sunny and warm conditions,” said Christophe Cure, President of the Mauritius Golf Federation.

“The leaderboard is pretty tight and with two rounds to play, the next two rounds promises to be very exciting.”

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

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