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6th June 2018 | Big Easy Tour

Van Buynder maintains command at Randpark

Pretoria teenager Otto van Buynder didn’t replicate the fireworks of the first round, but he will take a commanding lead into the final round of the fourth Big Easy IGT Challenge Tour event at Randpark Golf Club.

Van Buynder’s sublime 11-under-par 61 in the opening round at the Firethorn Course saw him start the second round with a seven-shot cushion. He grinded out a two-under 70 that featured four birdies to stay at the helm.

The 19-year-old from Blue Valley Golf Estate leads at 13-under, but even though he will be sleeping on a six shot lead, Van Buynder is nowhere near complacent.

“I left a couple of shots out there, but ’m happy with the score,” Van Buynder said. “I felt a little extra pressure today missed a couple of putts, but overall it was another solid day of ball striking.

“The course suits my game, and I’m looking forward to tomorrow. I’ll definitely aim to shoot another low number, because the guys just behind me will definitely try to go low.”

Zimbabwean Benjamin Follett-Smith got the closest to the 36-hole target, courtesy of an almost flawless 67.

Paul Boshoff from Pretoria returned a 71 to finish in third on six-under, while Sunshine Tour campaigner DK Kim shot the low round of the day, a 66 that boosted the Korean to joint fourth on five under alongside Andrew Burmester.

Follett-Smith reckons it will take something special to catch Van Buynder, but it can be done.

“I played really well, but the putts just didn’t go in and I let one slip just before the turn,” said the 21-year-old rookie. “Once I made the birdie at 10, I got it going on the greens and I made a few more coming home.

“Otto would have felt some pressure after that 61 but he did well to shoot below par today. It could have gone the other way. To catch him, you’re going to have to shoot a bogey-free round and you’ll have to make a couple of quick birdies.

“If you can get within two shots going down the back nine to put some pressure on him, you will have a shot at catching him. But it will to take a seriously hot putter and a clean card.”