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13th June 2017 | Big Easy Tour

Hess takes early lead in Joburg City Masters

Jacquin Hess shot a six-under 66 opening round in the Joburg City Masters held at Country Club Johannesburg to take a slender lead of the second of three event co-sanctioned events between the Sunshine Big Easy Tour and MENA Tour.

He made four birdies on the front nine but those gains were under threat as soon as he bogeyed the fourth and eighth holes. He bounced back solidly on the homeward nine with a series of birdies from 14 to 16, and again on the par-five 18th. It was not all-smooth-sailing, however, because there was always the constant threat Brett Liddle, Sean Bradley and Omar Sandys to contend with as all these players looked like they would usurp him at the top.

“I’m very happy; had a good start. Birdie on the first; it’s always nice to start with a birdie,” Hess said. “I had a good practice round yesterday,” he said, “where I made four birdies back-to-back on the back nine, so I just came in with some confidence and I stuck to my game plan.”

The member of the Gary Player Class of 2017-18 development programme says he aims to get a good start in all upcoming events to give himself chances of winning some silverware this season. “My aim is to get have a very good first round, and today the putter was fantastic,” he said.

“In the next couple of months you have to play well in the first round to set yourself up well in the tournaments. That’s my main focus. Today I made it happen. I am very happy,” said Hess.

Tied at five-under 67 is the pair of Bradley and Liddle and lurking behind them is veteran, Sandys, along with Henric Sturehed of Sweden, England’s Jamie Elson, Musiwalo Nethunzwi, Eddy Holland, Jeff Inglis and Francois Smith, at four-under.