South Africa’s top challengers for the Claret Jug – Erik van Rooyen and Zander Lombard – failed to break par on a day for good scoring at Carnoustie, writes WADE PRETORIUS.
Van Rooyen birdied the last to restore his round but the horse has bolted. With Tiger Woods and Justin Rose paving the way, the star names in contention did not fail.
Jordan Spieth’s 65, which began with an eagle on the 1st, saw the defending champion vault into a share of the lead. Rose’s 64 was the best score at Carnoustie during The Open as he moved from the cut line on to the first page of the leaderboard.
The South Africans failed to follow suit. Van Rooyen dropped four shots on the back nine and rescued his day from total disaster with a birdie on the last. For the young South African, the expectations will not be high; nevertheless, he will rue a number of missed opportunities.
He needed more fireworks than Van Rooyen to return his round to par. The notorious closing stretch saw the Rocco Forte runner-up go double-bogey before holing out on the last for a spectacular eagle.
Louis Oosthuizen and Shaun Norris both carded 69s but after starting the day level, those solid rounds were insufficient to make a dent on the leaders. Brandon Stone dropped to level after a 73.
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