Amateur Kyle De Beer backed up his flawless opening round of 65 with an equally impressive and blemish-free 66 to total 13-under for the week and move to a share of the lead with Christiaan Burke in the Big Easy IGT Chase to the Final at Irene Country Club on Tuesday.
“I’m very happy with how I played and especially with my mental game,” said De Beer. “When I came in this morning, my thinking was the same as yesterday; just go out and enjoy it and stick to my game plan. I know Christiaan (Burke) is playing so well at the moment, so I expected him to shoot a low score like usual. He is very impressive to watch but as I said, I had to stick to my game plan and see where it takes me.”
A strong front nine for De Beer was characterised by birdies on the par-five second, the fourth, sixth and ninth holes while he refused to make any bogeys on that stretch. Then, coming home, and making use of yet another par-five hole, De Beer made another birdie around the turn before taking advantage of the last long hole on the course, the par-five 17th where he made birdie once more.
“The weather has been windy and I wouldn’t say the best for scoring but the tees have been quite far forward, which has made some holes much more scorable,” noted De Beer.“I But my game plan is the same – all aspects of my game are decent, so I’m not relying on anything specific. I just want to see how low I can go.”
De Beer knows what lies ahead tomorrow. Burke is no pushover and coming in with a near-perfect score of five-under 67 to add to his Monday score of a flawless 64, he will know victory is within touching distance.
“I played well the first 27 holes of the tournament,” Burke said of his assessment of his first two days in Irene. “But then, the back nine today, I really struggled a bit. I am still positive about tomorrow because me and Kyle are tied for the lead and it’s gonna be an interesting one tomorrow. I’ve been hitting my irons quite well, so if I can just keep that up tomorrow it will help a lot.”
Also impressive on day two was Samuel Simpson whose bogey-free 63 was the best score of the day. Thanks to that score, he moves to a share of third with yet another amateur, the record-breaking Casey Jarvis, at nine-under and four strokes back. At eight-under and completing the top five leading players, veteran campaigner, Ryan Tipping will feel he is in with a chance too when the final round tees off tomorrow.