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17th April 2024 | Big Easy Tour

Roets pulls clear ahead of final round at Blue Valley

Jason Roets backed up his opening round of 68 with a brilliant six-under-par 66 in the second round of the Final of the Altron Big Easy Tour, pulling two shots clear on 10-under on Wednesday.

Roets has set himself up for a dream finish to this season as he leads the field by two strokes ahead of the final round here on Thursday. He had a fast start on Wednesday as he birdied his first three holes. He gave a shot away on the fourth but recovered with back-to-back birdies on seven and eight.

He birdied the 10th but dropped again on the next hole. He stabilised himself after that bogey and made five straight pars as he worked to keep the big numbers at bay. Those were followed by a brace of birdies on 17 and the last.

“It was very nice to get off to a start like that,” said Roets who plays out of Eye of Africa. “I made a good putt on one; hit it close on two and then two-putted for birdie on three, so it was a solid start. It kind of set the tone for the day. When I got to the back nine, I kind of tried to keep doing what I was doing on the front.

“I was very patient today. These 54-hole events are tricky, so all you’re trying to do in the first two days is to play yourself into contention and I have done that this week. The final round is going to be exciting but I must stay focused and do what I have been doing, have fun and stay in the moment.”

With the duo of Eagle Canyon’s Travis Ladner and Leon Vorster lurking just two strokes back, Roets will need to bring his A-game if he is to walk out of Blue Valley victorious. Both Ladner and Vorster shot rounds of 66s on day two, with Ladner firing in a bogey-free effort.

“It feels good to be in this position again,” Ladner said. “I started well yesterday but I finished badly. So, to come out here today with a better attitude and shoot six-under was satisfying. I want to play on the Sunshine Tour again next season and a strong performance here will help me get there. I am doing everything I can to make that happen. I think I’m eighth on the Order of Merit and a good finish here will guarantee me that card.”

As pleased as he was with his second round, Parys Golf and Country Club’s Vorster didn’t want to look too far ahead after his spectacular 66.

“I won’t think about it differently,” Vorster said of the looming final round of the season. “It’s just golf and you have to enjoy it and try not to put too much pressure on yourself. Obviously, I want to do well but you must still enjoy yourself whilst you are at it. My goal is to get back to the Sunshine Tour and I hope I can have a good finish this week.”

Only the top 30 players on the final Order of Merit are eligible for the final tournament of the Altron Big Easy Tour. The top 12 players on the rankings will earn their Sunshine Tour playing cards for the upcoming season.