JOHANNESBURG – South Africa’s Daniel van Tonder vaulted himself into contention with a second round four-under 66 at The Open, at Royal St George’s Golf Club, in Sandwich, on Friday.
Playing as one of the early starters, he rose 17 places on the leaderboard into a tie for second on six-under, alongside countryman Louis Oosthuizen who had not started his second round yet.
American Collin Morikawa held the clubhouse lead on nine-under after a second round six-under 64.
Van Tonder began his round with four straight pars, before a dropped shot on the par four fifth. He would respond with birdie on the par four eighth to make the turn in level par 35.
Coming home, he reeled off birdies at 12, 14, 17 and 18 to return in four-under 31.
Also teeing off early was Jaco Ahlers who struggled to a nine-over 79 to finish on seven-over. With the projected cut on one-over, Ahlers will be able to pack his bags as he will not be around for the weekend.
Among the South Africans busy with their second rounds, Justin Harding was the next highest-placed on three-under overall, level par on the day after six holes, in a tie for 14th.
Oosthuizen was scheduled to tee off at 3:59pm SA time, and was bullish about his chances having finished second in the last two majors and leading after the first round at The Open this week.
“It gives me confidence going into majors knowing that I'm still competing in them and I've still got chances of winning. But yeah, once the week starts, I need to get that out of my mind and just focus on every round and every shot,” Oosthuizen said.
“But it definitely puts me in a better frame of mind going into the week.”
African News Agency (ANA)