Nedbank Golf Challenge. Alex Noren Has Half-Way Lead.

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Alex Noren has the  half-way lead at the Nedbank Challenge in Sun City, South Africa.

Nedbank Golf Challenge

Alex Noren / getty

Alex will take a two shot lead into the week-end at the Nedbank Golf Challenge after his second round score -5 under par 67 gave him a tournament total of -8 under par. There had been a delay of 1 hour 42 minutes earlier in the day, and Alex came back on fire;

“I made a lot of birdies on the back nine after that delay, which was great fun.”

“I managed to chip-in, which always helps, and then make a birdie on 17, which is quite a tricky hole today.

“Overall, I’m very pleased.”

Five players are tied second place, those two shots back at -6 under par after 36 holes, they are home favorites George Coetzee, Jaco van Zyl and Louis Oosthuizen, and they are joined by  Chris Wood and Fabrizio Zanotti.

Fabrizio carded the tournaments first ever hole in one,  at the 210 yard par three 4th hole, using  a seven iron;

Nedbank Golf Challenge

Fabrizio Zanotti / getty

“When people told me that it was the first hole in one in the history of the tournament, it sounded strange for me, but then the people from the tournament confirmed it to me.”

“It was very strange, but lucky for me, I’m the first one.”

“I think it was just a perfect club, a perfect distance for me with a 7-iron.”

“The wind was helping a little, so the ball, it was going to release a little.”

In a day which had everything Lasse Jensen produced a sensational Albatross at the long 601 yard par four 14th on his way to a second round -3 under 69 and T 13 for the competition.

Nedbank Challenge. Ross Fisher Starts Fast.

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Ross Fisher starts fast in the 2015 Race To Dubai, leading the Nedbank Challenge in the first round at the Gary Player Country Club, in South Africa.

Nedbank Challenge

Ross Fisher / Getty Images

Ross fired a first round -6 under par 66 to lead the Nedbank Challenge at the end of the day in South Africa, with a two shot advantage. He made the most of the reachable par fives;

“I think the par fives are all scoreable. They are all reachable, but you’ve still got to hit two good shots. So par fives are quite key, but again, there are more scoreable holes out there.”

“There’s quite a lot of short par fours where if you get your driver in good position, you’ve got short irons into the greens, and the greens are putting well.”  

“So as long as you can read the putts well, there’s definitely some scoreable holes out there. I felt like I drove it really well. I didn’t miss many fairways.”

“Everyone’s got their own way of playing this golf course. You can’t really be too overly aggressive, but my style of golf, I like to hit driver a lot because I feel like I hit it quite long and I do generally hit it pretty straight.” 

There is a three-way tie for second place at -4 under par, local man George Coetzee shares the place with Marcel Siem and Alexander Levy at the Gary Player Country Club in Sun City.

Marcel provided the most remarkable shot of the day for the watching gallery. Using an eight iron, his 183 yard approach to the par four 17th deflected off the right edge of the green, and then spun into the hole for an eagle that won the him a Volvo V40 T5;

“It’s not the best golf shot at all for me in my career. I tried to draw it in and it stayed straight and hit the fringe and had a firm bounce to the left. It was really cool to hole that one.”

George was playing alongside Ross Fisher, saying they fed off each other;

“I’m sure we fed off each other. I’m sure he’s grateful for me, too.” 

Stephen Gallacher, European Tour 2014 Rookie of the Year Brooks Koepka and Miguel Angel Jiménez, who was the first player to tee off on the second longest course in European Tour history, are in a group of six players on -2 under par, Miguel had this to say

“I’m the oldest guy in the field, probably the guy who played more years. Now I start my 27th season today on the first tee. It’s nice to make the first shot of the season.”

Nedbank Golf Challenge. Donaldson Dominates.

Jamie Donaldson dominates at the Nedbank Challenge at the Gary Player Country Club in Sun City, South Africa.

Jamie Donaldson  (Getty Images)

Jamie Donaldson / Getty Images

Jamie carded a -5 under par 67 in round three of the Nedbank Golf Challenge to lead the tournament at -16 under par, a three shot advantage going into the final round. It would have been a shot more had he not bogeyed the 17th hole, he said he was between clubs;

“I was in between clubs and it put me in trouble but in the end I came out with a good five. I’m still in a strong position and I’ve got to go out there tomorrow and play really good golf.  It’s a tough field, a lead of three doesn’t mean much among these guys.”

Thomas Björn and Ryan Moore are tied in second place at -13 under par, Thomas thinks he still has a chance tomorrow in the final round, if he can go low;

“I got off to a good start and played solid golf. That’s what you need to do on this course. If I can shoot 66 or 67 tomorrow, I’ll give myself a chance. But you have to play sensible golf, not try and chase down the leader.”

Ryan, a recent winner on the US PGA Tour, carded a -3 under par 33 front nine, before picking up two further shots on the back to complete a -5 under par 67 third round.

Five shots off the lead at -11 under par for the tournament are Thongchai Jaidee, Sergio Garcia and Henrik Stenson.

Henrik will be ruing his compounded error, twice finding the water en route to a double bogey seven at the par four ninth hole.

Sergio produced one of the shots of the day, to chip in for an Eagle 3 at the par five 14th hole, and followed that with birdies at 16 and 17. While Thongchai went bogey free in his round of -6 under par 66.

Westwood wins Nedbank Challenge

Lee Westwood won the nedbank challenge in South Africa at the Gary Player Country Club, after a last very conservative round. There was no repeat of yesterdays magical golf as Lee steadily plotted his way around the tough set up of the course. The following pack, including world number one Luke Donald could not catch him. Lee’s third round 62 gave him enough of a cushion to be able to cruise to the finish. He told the presentation audience,

‘I’ve been coming here a long time, this is the ninth time, and it’s special every time I come.

‘I love playing this course and yesterday was probably the best round I’ve ever played. It set me up to play conservatively today. It’s very satisfying

‘So to get invited back here and win back-to-back titles is a bit special.

‘Yesterday was very special. I drove well and made a few putts, which you’ve got to do round any course when you make 10 under.’

Read more:

All smiles: Westwood poses with the trophy after winning in South Africa