6th October 2015 | Big Easy IGT Golf
Kruger to the fore at Race to Q-School
JOHANNESBURG, 6 October 2015 – Three-time IGT Pro Tour winner Bryandrew Roelofsz lies in wait in the first Race to Q-School, just a lone shot behind Blue Valley golfer Pieter Kruger, who edged into the second round lead at Ruimsig Country Club.
Kruger battled to a two under 70 to take pole position on eight-under-par 138 in the first event, presented by Wanna Be A Champion Academy, while Roelofsz returned a 69 to line up a fourth podium finish this season.
TG Bekker shot 70 and David Lamprecht posted a 68 to finish two off the pace, while amateurs Ruan Korb and Michael Pienaar are a further stroke adrift after respective rounds of 70 and 71.
Kruger confessed he was surprised to be leading after a “flat out bad round.”
“The score actually flattered me, because it wasn’t a good round at all,” said the 31-year-old Limpopo-born player.
“It was a frustrating day. I didn’t play well; I just couldn’t get it going all day. I made a couple of birdies and dropped two shots and the eagle at 18 made me look good. I’ve learned, though, that when you struggle like that, you just have to keep plugging away.”
The GFG Academy player is hoping for a “third time lucky’ result at the Sunshine Tour Qualifying School in December after coming close in the two editions.
“It’s more about the courses than anything, but Q-School is the final hurdle and I need to adjust my attitude the two qualifying courses in Bloemfontein,” Kruger said.
“The courses don’t suit me, and it played a big role in my performance in the last two years. I will be chasing a lot of success in the Race to Q-School series over the next nine weeks so I can go to Bloemfontein with a really positive attitude.”
A change in attitude can pay off handsomely, as Danie Pretorius discovered.
The 31-year-old Clarens golfer notched four birdies and an eagle-three for a flawless 66 to take the low round honours and a seat on the bus at two under.
“I shot 76 in the first round and I was joint 37th,” the SJC Sport Management Group player said.
“I knew it was crunch time if I wanted to make the cut, so I just took a really positive attitude on to the course and it impacted the way I played.”
The IGT Tour regular competed on the Mena Pro Tour’s Dubai Swing, but returned home to sharpen his game for Q-School. “The Race to Q-School is great prep for Q-School,” Pretorius said.
“The courses are set up a lot tougher and the competition gets stiffer as the series progresses.
“You want to get yourself into a top 10 position every week so you are primed for Q-School at the end of the series.”
SECOND ROUND SCORES – top 10
138 – Pieter Kruger 68 70
139 – Bryandrew Roelofsz 70 69
140 – TJ Bekker 70 70, David Lamprecht 72 68
141 – Michael Pienaar (ama) 71 70, Ruan Korb (ama) 70 71
142 – Jonathan Waschefort 70 72, Dean O’Riley 68 74, Simon Kruger 70 72, Joubert van Eeden 69 73, Jason Diab 69 73, Danie Pretorius 76 66, Jacques Ungerer 71 71