Alfred Dunhill Championship. Morten Ørum Madsen Maintains Form.

Morten Ørum Madsen maintains his early season form by leading the Alfred Dunhill Championship at Leopard Creek Country Club in South Africa.

Morten Orum Madsen  (Getty Images)

Morten Ørum Madsen /Getty Images

Morten, from Denmark, fired an opening round of -7  under par 65 to lead the Alfred Dunhill Championship on day 1, this is just one week since his win in the South African Open.

He carded eight birdies and a single bogey at Leopard Creek Country Club and that was good enough for a one shot first round lead over South African Allan Versfeld and Portugal’s Ricardo Santos, who finished the day at -6 under par.

Morten had plenty to say after his excellent start to this tournament;

” I wasn’t expecting to shoot 65 today, I knew I was playing well but I won last week so everything that happens this week or next week is going to be icing on the cake. I am just trying to enjoy the ride.”

“Today it seemed easy but it definitely wasn’t, it was pretty tough out there and the course was playing long with the wind. I played really solidly, I gave myself a lot of looks at birdie and a lot of shorter ones which was nice. I have a lot of confidence right now, I really believe I am going to hit good shots on pretty much every shot. I don’t pull off all of them, I hit my tee shot on the seventh in the water, but the majority of them came off well and I rolled in some nice putts.”

“I’m really, really happy with how I played, I heard it’s tough to come out the week after you have won and play well but I felt pretty relaxed in the days leading up to the tournament and I just wanted to go out and see if I can put some solid shots together and I managed to do that today and put myself in a good position. Hopefully I can keep it up.”

The defending champion, Charl Schwartzel, was two shots further back on -4 under par, and was joined on that score by England’s Richard Finch, Scotland’s David Drysdale and France’s Victor Riu.

Victor was playing last week, and unfortunately missed the cut, so he was really pleased with this weeks first round effort;

” Last week was my first event on The European Tour for this year,and I was on a break in France for two weeks and I couldn’t train a lot because it was very cold. So it was a tough start for me, and after I missed the cut, I had last weekend and Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday to practice and it was much better today. I’ve got a bit more confidence.The course was playing very long, because the ball wasn’t running while it was cool this morning, but I was very happy with my driving. I was consistent and I was very straight.”

Alfred Dunhill Championship, Charl Schwartzel Wins

 

Charl Schwartzel won the Alfred Dunhill Championship by a massive 12 shots at Leopard Creek Country Club in South AfricaSublime Schwartzel completes mammoth win

Charl Schwartzel / Getty Images

The last round may have been interrupted by thunderstorms, but noting interrupted Charl Schwartzel cruising to an easy victory setting a target of -24 under par. An amazing twelve shots clear of Kristoffer Broberg in second place.

Charl has a remarkable record at this course, which is situated on the border of the Kruger National Park, he won his first European Tour title there in 2004 and has had four runner-up finishes. He said it has always been special for him;

“It’s always been a special place for me, this is where I can almost say my career started and it’s always stayed close to my heart. It’s nice to have continued my form from last week. I was saying a month and a half ago it’s been a pretty disappointing year. Slowly and surely I started to swing the club a lot better, back to how I did when I won The Masters, and I actually got excited to play again. It started at the South AFrican Open and from there got better and better. It’s been a pretty good year now!”

Sweden’s Kristoffer Broberg, four times a winner on the Challenge Tour last season, finished in second place, after  Grégory Bourdy suffered a double-bogey seven on the final hole.  Grégory had been the main challenger to Charl for the best part of the weekend, but slipped up on the last hole to give Kristoffer the second place on his own. Kristoffer was of course delighted with his first earnings on the European Tour;

“It’s amazing to get off to such a good start in The Race to Dubai in my first season as a European Tour Member and it sets me up pretty good for the new season.”