Frenchman leads pack at Nedbank Challenge

Frenchman leads pack at Nedbank Challenge

Euro Tour

Frenchman leads pack at Nedbank Challenge

Victor Dubuisson remains on course for a dramatic return to winning ways after taking the 36-hole lead in the $7.5 million Nedbank Golf Challenge in South Africa.
The Frenchman added a two-under-par 70 to his opening 68. He sits at six under par, two shots ahead of Lee Westwood and South Africa’s Darren Fichardt. Alex Noren, Ross Fisher, Tyrrell Hatton and Scotland’s Scott Jamieson are tied for fourth on three under.
Dubuisson hasn’t won since the 2015 Turkish Airlines Open, and has seen his form plummet since then. He found the sort of game that made him a 2014 Ryder Cup player with a third-place finish in last month’s Alfred Dunhill Links Championship at St Andrews. Thatperformance saved him from a possible return to the European Tour Qualifying School, and he’s carried that form into South Africa.
“I just try to play as good as I can each day, day after day,” Dubuisson said.

The 27-year-old might be further ahead if not for two bogeys on his card at the 11thand 18th holes.

“The driver of course here is the key if you want to play well. Today I didn’t miss many fairways, maybe one or two, and I played very solidly in the wind.”

Dubuisson needs a high finish to get into the European Tour top 60 and make it to next week’s DP World Tour Championship, Dubai, the season finale. He’s currently ranked 73rd.

“It’s the goal of the week to play Dubai because it’s been five years in a row that I’ve played the Dubai final. Of course I think about it.”
Westwood added a second consecutive two-under 70 to get to the top of the leaderboard. He might be leading on his own if not for eight bogeys over the first two rounds. Fortunately, he’s minimised those errors with 10 birdies and an eagle.

Tommy Fleetwood’s hopes of pulling further ahead of absentees Sergio Garcia and Justin Rose in the race to finish the year as European Tour number one aren’t going to plan. Fleetwood is tied for 37th. He needs two good rounds to give himself a bigger cushion heading to Dubai.

 

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