Kruger claims the lead at Serengeti | TeamSA - TeamSA

Kruger claims the lead at Serengeti


Jbe’ Kruger made the most of moving day on Thursday when he shot three-under-par 69 to take his total to nine-under for the week, and claim a one-shot lead going into the final round of the Sun Carnival City Challenge at Serengeti Golf and Wildlife Estate.

While admitting to having small issues with his putting, Kruger made a respectable five birdies in the second round, but further gains were prevented by the shots he dropped on the par-three fifth and on 13. And, while not the sharpest round by his standard, Kruger still managed to usurp overnight leader Hennie du Plessis on Thursday, a testimony to how much he enjoys this track.

‘I felt it was a little bit tougher,’ said Kruger about the second round. ‘I’m not fond of playing in the cold, so I made a few mistakes earlier on.’ Tough as it was, it did little to deter him from claiming top spot at the right time, but inspired him even further. ‘I think it’s the difficulty,’ he said of what he liked about this course, ‘I like it being tough. It helps me with my concentration a bit.’

Hot on his heels in second spot is Titch Moore, who also shot a 69 which took him to eight-under for the week.

Despite making six birdies on the day, Moore lost momentum when he dropped shots on the par-five third and 16th holes, and again on 18, to settle for three-under. In third spot sit Louis de Jager, Merrick Bremner, Hennie du Plessis and defending champion Ruan de Smidt. Both De Jager and Bremner shot 67s to total seven-under, while De Smidt signed for four-under par 68.

‘I’m happy I’m three back and in contention again,’ De Smidt said. ‘It feels good to be in the mix. I have been playing well over the last couple of weeks but not finishing off; driver the other week, putter the next, but this week all seems to be coming together. This course is unbelievable,’ said De Smidt.

Du Plessis finished level-par to remain at seven-under par. The biggest mover and lowest scorer on the day was Ockie Strydom, whose six-under-par 66 catapulted him to a share of seventh along with JJ Senekal, Neil Schietekat, Michael Palmer and Anthony Michael – all on six-under for the tournament.

Whether Kruger will make the most of playing ‘at home’, or De Smidt will defend his title come Friday, there’s yet more golf to be played on the last day here.

Second round scores
135 – Jbe’ Kruger 66 69
136 – Titch Moore 67 69
137 – Louis de Jager 70 67, Merrick Bremner 70 67, Hennie du Plessis 65 72, Ruan de Smidt 69 68, Anthony Michael 67 70
138 – Ockie Strydom 72 66, JJ Senekal 68 70, Neil Schietekat 68 70, Michael Palmer 69 69, Callum Mowat 72 66
139 – James Kamte 67 72, JC Ritchie 69 70, Jean Hugo 68 71, Keith Horne 72 67, Tyrone Ferreira 73 66, Jake Roos 73 66
140 – Jason Froneman 70 70, Mark Williams 73 67, Jonathan Agren 68 72, Hennie Otto 69 71, Theunis Spangenberg 68 72
141 – Wynand Dingle 72 69, Mark Murless 70 71, Zack Byrd 72 69
142 – Musiwalo Nethunzwi 74 68, Jared Harvey 71 71, N.J. Arnoldi 73 69, Chris Swanepoel 70 72
143 – Scott Campbell 72 71, Doug McGuigan 72 71, Jacques Kruyswijk 68 75, Ulrich van den Berg 72 71
144 – Dayne Moore 76 68, Antonio Rosado 74 70, Christiaan Basson 75 69, Andrew van der Knaap 72 72, Aubrey Beckley 73 71, Stuart Smith 74 70