4th June 2019 | Big Easy IGT Golf

Spacey blows into Big Easy IGT lead with 64

Spacey blows into Big Easy IGT lead with 64

(PHOTO – Matthew Spacey; credit CJ du Plooy)

ALBERTON, 4 June 2019 – Matthew Spacey finished with flurry of birdies to lay down a marker for a coveted Sunshine Tour card with his best round of the season in the second round of the Big Easy IGT Challenge Tour #4 on Tuesday.

The 28-year-old fired a flawless seven-under-par 64 to surge to a two-shot lead on 10-under 134 at Reading Country Club.

Hendrikus Stoop also registered a 64 on a low scoring day in Alberton and will start the final round in joint second with Albert Venter, who returned a 67, while Reinhardt Blaauw returned a blemish-free 66 to finish four off the pace.

But the low round honours belonged to Johannesburg rookie Mitchell Lightfoot.

After opening with par at the first, the Glenvista golfer went on the tear and racked up seven birdies on the bounce for an outward loop of 29. Lightfoot made four more coming home to offset a brace of bogeys and a nine-under 62 earned him a seat on the seven-man bus at five under.

“That was some golf that Mitchell played out there,” said Spacey. “He could be the man to beat if has another low one on Wednesday.

“I am obviously pretty happy after 64. I played great all day and got pretty hot on the back nine. I really like this course. You have to be strategic off the tees, but if you’re hitting it well, it rewards you. You can gain shots on the three par fives, and most of the guys in the field can get on the green in two at the 12th. A couple of the par fours are also score-able, but the par threes are tough. They all have turtle-back greens, so you have to hit it at exactly the right distance and straight. If you don’t put it on the greens, it’s very tough to up-and-down for par.”

After making the perfect start with a three-foot birdie putt at the 10th and a solid par at 11, Spacey drove it into the trees at the par five 12th.

“I had a gap between the trees and I went for it,” he said. “I got it on the green and two-putted for birdie. After that I had a straight run of pars to reach the turn in 33. I had a chance at 14 where I missed a 15-footer for birdie and I hit it close at 17, but also missed the birdie putt.

“I hit 2-iron off the tee at the first, and it was the perfect club. I had 120 metres in, and hit sand-wedge 15 foot short and boxed the putt for birdie.”

Following a close call at the par five fourth and another birdie putt shaving the hole at the short fifth, Spacey’s flat stick caught fire.

“I hit 2-iron, gap-wedge to six feet at six and left a 9-iron six feet short at the seventh,” he said. “I went with driver down the fairway at the eighth and hit 7-iron from 195 metres, but my second shot plugged in the upslope of the front bunker.

“I hit a really good trap shot to up-and-down for birdie and at the ninth, I hit 8-iron to six feet and boxed the putt for a birdie finish.”

Spacey is in the top six on the Road to Sunshine Tour rankings after the first three events and a win on Wednesday will greatly improve his chances of a card for the Sunshine Tour next year.

“Last year the top 10 ranked players got cards, but they have reduced it to the top six,” he said.

“The stakes are even higher and you have to perform every week to have a chance. I think my game has been going the right way for quite a while, to be honest.  I won the season-opener, finished third at Observatory and was sixth at Modderfontein.

“I feel like I am playing well enough to win again, but I can only control my own game out there; I can’t do anything if someone goes hot. I’m looking forward to playing with Stoopie and Albert. Stoopie and I played for South Africa together in the amateur ranks. Allie was younger than us, but I’ve played with him a lot over the last year on the IGT and the Big Easy IGT Challenge Tours. We should have some fun and good contest.”

Second Round Scores

All competitors RSA unless otherwise specified; amateurs indicated as AMA

132 – Matthew Spacey 68 64

134 – Hendrikus Stoop 70 64, Albert Venter 67 67

136 – Erhard Lambrechts 66 70, Reinhardt Blaauw 70 66

137 – Hans-Jurie Human 67 70, Michael Pfeifer 70 67, Jason Smith 66 71, Richard Joubert 65 72, Mitchell Lightfoot 75 62, Malcolm Mitchell 74 63, Christopher van der Merwe 71 66

138 – Carlo Heunis 71 67, Francois Blaauw AMA 69 69, Andrew Burmester 70 68, Yubin Jung 68 70, Michael Kok 70 68

139 – Jason Roets 68 71, Jason Viljoen 70 69, Brandon Gildenhuys AMA 72 67, Marthin Scheepers 67 72, Bradley Diggeden 71 68

140 – Dino Capazario AMA 69 71, Jason Rossiter 72 68, Eric Nel 73 67, Gideon van der Vyver 67 73, Andrew Williamson AMA 70 70, Ruan Botha 72 68, Gary Daoust (BEL) 75 65, Luan Boshoff 68 72

141 – Michiel Bothma 71 70, Maritz Wessels 70 71

142 – Coert Groenewald 70 72, Andrew Carlsson 72 70, Jaco van der Merwe 70 72, Gareth Sargent 71 71

Missed the cut:-

143 – Gerhard Pepler 73 70, Quintin Wilsnach 72 71, John McClean (NIR) 69 74, Wayne Stroebel 68 75, Jack Duthie 72 71, CJ Levey 73 70, Hein Dreyer AMA 69 74

144 – Divan Marais 74 70, Thabiso Ngcobo 73 71

145 – Albert Visser 74 71, Maverick Faber (FRA) 76 69, Marco De Beer 70 75, Romano Saincic 74 71, Lwazi Gqira 70 75, Carlo O’Reilly 74 71, Leon Visser 75 70, Phumlani Maluka 72 73, Theunis Bezuidenhout 71 74, Karl Ochse 71 74

146 – Keaton Slatter 74 72, Jonathan Waschefort 74 72, Armand van Dyk AMA 71 75, Jonathan George AMA 70 76, Hennie O’Kennedy 68 78, Arno Pretorius 71 75, Basil Wright 76 70, Hanlo Jacobs 74 72

147 – Fritz Orren 77 70, Neal Woernhard (SUI) 73 74, Zabastian de Jager 75 72, James Kamte 76 71, Alpheus Kelapile 74 73, Clayton Mansfield 72 75, Tumelo Molloyi 74 73

148 – Ricki Dembo 73 75, Thabang Simon 74 74

149 – Tristan Eeles 76 73, Allister De Kock 78 71, Evance Vukeya 74 75, Teddy Mathebula 74 75, Paul Rodrigues 76 73

150 – Reece Mc Kain AMA 74 76, Keegan Mclachlan AMA 79 71, Jeff Inglis (ENG) 70 80, Donovan Pearse 75 75

151 – Shalan Govender 75 76, Christian Basson 78 73, Leon Vorster 76 75, Jason Gilliver AMA 73 78

152 – David Toplis 75 77, Caylum Boon 78 74, Christiaan Pretorius 76 76, Liam Labuschagne 79 73

153 – Jan-Louis Nel AMA 81 72, Lincon Cele 76 77, Stephan Erasmus 74 79

154 – Wynand Potgieter 79 75, Neo Mokgatle 73 81, Nqobani Ndabambi (ZIM) 80 74, Mike Maile 79 75, Henning du Plooy 75 79

157 – Jabulane Mabilane 76 81

158 – Duan Nagel 79 79, Ricardo Towell 76 82

159 – Byron van der Merwe 81 78

161 – Louis Botha 81 80, Pequestro Dyssel 85 76

162 – Dean du Plessis 78 84

168 – Gavin Frazer 82 86

WDN – Michael-James Steyn 78 WDN

RTD – Paul Boshoff 74 RTD, Kenneth Dube RTD RTD, Cameron Moralee 68 RTD

DSQ – Terence Mogapi DSQ DSQ

Written and released by Lali Stander on behalf of the Big Easy IGT Challenge Tour.

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