12th January 2014 | Big Easy IGT Golf

Boezaart takes command at CRM

(Photo – Lean Boezaart; credit CJ du Plooy)CMR12-15JANDAY1 (45)

JOHANNESBURG, 12 January 2014 – Lean Boezaart fired a superb five-under-par 67 to lead by one shot from Herman Minnie and amateur Werner van Niekerk in the first round of the IGT Tour’s Final Q-School Warm-Up on Sunday.

Minnie set the early target, but Boezaart – a chartered accountant who longs to swap his calculator for clubs and campaign on the Sunshine Tour this season – tipped the scales in his favour with a commanding performance on the greens.

Minnie collected four birdies in a flawless round for a 68, but Boezaart went one better, boxing six birdie putts against a lone drop.

Van Niekerk, meanwhile, dropped three shots, but erased those with four early birdies and finished with a string of three to tie Minnie in second place on four under.

Minnie will be joining Boezaart and Van Niekerk in the chase for cards at the Sunshine Tour’s Qualifying School in Bloemfontein next week.

Van Niekerk is a first timer, but Boezaart returns for a second time and former top Gauteng North amateur Minnie is making his third return trip.

“This is a fantastic position to be in with a week to go,” said Minnie, a GFA Academy student who shares his time between Centurion and Irene Country Clubs.

“That was my first bogey-free round in a long while and it’s the result of hard work and long hours with my coach, Graeme Francis.

“To finish within striking distance of Lean is pretty great, too. He won the last Race to Q-School at Glendower and finished second on the Race to Q-School Order of Merit.

“I don’t think I was prepared the previous to goes at Q-School, but this time I feel really ready to challenge.”

Race to Q-School winner Callum Mowat, who will also join the field of more than 240 hopefuls at Q-School, looked set to lead the first round after reeling in five successive birdies, but his run was rudely interrupted by three bogeys in the next four holes.

The 22-year-old amateur picked up two more birdies after the turn, but he hit two trees playing the 18th and closed with a three under 69 to tie for fourth.

“This was the second time I started with five birdies in a row at CMR, and no doubt, I should have been leading,” he said. “I was playing with Haydn Porteous, though, and we haven’t seen each other for a while since he turned pro and I just lost focus.

“Just goes to show how quickly a great round can turn into a fight for survival. I managed to save myself to a degree on the back nine, but I sure won’t be doing that again, not with Q-School a week away.”

Swaziland’s Nobuhle Dlamini, who will be making her debut on the Ladies European Tour this season, opened with a two under 70.

The former top SA amateur finished in the bus at ninth alongside amateur Calvin Caldeira and professionals CJ du Plessis, Chris Pretorius, Sarel van der Walt and Ryan Clarke.

FIRST ROUND SCORES

67 – Lean Boezaart

68 – Herman Minnie, Werner Van Niekerk (AM)

69 – Gareth Akers (AM), Callum Mowat (AM), Jaco Prinsloo, Maritz Wessels, Conway Kunneke (AM)

70 – CJ du Plessis, Nobuhle Dlamini, Christiaan Pretorius, Sarel Van der Walt, Ryan Clarke, Calvin Caldeira (AM)

71 – John McClean, Bryandrew Roelofsz, Slade Fick (AM), Juan Langeveld, Joubert Van Eeden (AM), Hyun Park, JC Ritchie

72 – Haydn Porteous, Raymond Mathonsi, Jerry Steyn, Merrick Van As (AM), Jonathan Waschefort

73 – Jacques Prinsloo, Brett Liddle, Roberto Lupini, Ted Hendriks, Otto van Greunen, Mike Downes, Graeme Vrugtman (AM), Alwyn Vorster, Louis Moolman, Pieter Kruger

74 – Zak Van Zyl (AM), Dylan de Beer, Frans Strydom, JP Van der Walt, Murray Smit (AM)

75 – Lourens Du Plessis (AM), Yngve Nilsson, Sam Botham, Shaun van Tonder

76 – Deon Bredenkamp, Louwtjie J van Vuuren (AM), Johan de Beer, Carrie Park (AM), Hertzog Landman

77 – Arthur Horne, Jaco-Willem Gouws (AM)

78 – Morne Wolmarans (AM), Wayne Stroebel, Kim Williams, Jaryd Wagner

79 – Matt Bright (AM), Henry Featherstone

80 – Leon Knoll (AM), Marcel Capaul

81 – Tim Garner, Romano Saincic

82 – Jacqui Akers (AM)

85 – Julian de Wet (AM)

92 – Peter Evans

94 – Moses Mkgoebane (AM)

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