• Harding leads at Wentworth

    Justin Harding
    Justin Harding

    A brilliant opening-round 66 has seen Justin Harding move to the top of the BMW PGA Championship leaderboard, alongside two other players.

    The South African made a solid start to his week at Wentworth Club as some of the very best players on the European Tour compete for the third event on the Rolex Series.

    Harding hit the ground running with a bogey-free display on Thursday in round that yielded a total of six birdies throughout the 18 holes.

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    And, the 34-year-old was quite satisfied with the control he had over his opening round.

    ‘I think the thing that makes me most happy is there were no bogeys. I played good, solid. I had good control of my ball flight and my irons. Just a matter of trying to find a few fairways and see if I can give myself a couple chances on the greens,’ Harding said.

    ‘I think everyone teeing it up knows the stature of the event and how important it is for the season. It’s obviously an opportunity to have all the big guns out and playing, and any golfer wants to taste the best out there. The course is in great shape. They have put on a great show here. It ultimately is just a matter of trying to get through it and waiting until they all come out and can cheer us on.’

    Harding will head into Friday’s second round with Spain’s Adri Arnaus and England’s Tyrrell Hatton also occupying a share of the lead on 6 under par.

    Gavin Green, Eddie Pepperell, Shane Lowry and Matthew Fitzpatrick are all a further stroke back on 5 under after respective rounds of 67.

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    Garrick Higgo is the second best-placed South African in the field on 3 under thanks a decent round of 69 that saw him end the day in T16, while Christiaan Bezuidenhout managed to go through the day on even par.

    Dean Burmester (+1), George Coetzee (+2) and Thomas Aiken (+3) will all be eager to get into red figures on Friday with Compleat Golfer’s playing editor Brandon Stone, Branden Grace and Erik van Rooyen on 4 over par.

    Justin Walters finished the round on 5 over and Haydn Porteous on 8 over par.

     

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