Grace joins leader Horne as weather halts play

Leeds's Daniel Gavins had disparate rounds of 70 and 77 in Johannesburg (Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe).
Leeds's Daniel Gavins had disparate rounds of 70 and 77 in Johannesburg (Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe).
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Branden Grace justified his position as pre-tournament favourite before bad weather disrupted play for the second day running in the BMW SA Open in Johannesburg.

Grace was two over par after three holes of his opening round before recovering to card a 69 and the world No 14 – the highest ranked player in the field – carried on where he left off yesterday.

The 27-year-old fired four birdies in a row from the second at Glendower Golf Club and bounced back from a bogey on the sixth by picking up further shots on the 10th and 11th shortly before play was suspended at 3pm local time due to the threat of lightning.

No further play was possible, leaving Grace to share the lead with compatriot Keith Horne on eight under par as South African players occupied 11 of the top 13 places on the leaderboard.

Horne, who set the clubhouse target after adding a 69 to his opening 67, said: “I didn’t necessarily play as well as Thursday but the big thing was that I made no bogeys, which helps..”

England’s Ross McGowan was the best-placed non-South African, the world No 317 sharing fourth place on six under after three birdies and one bogey in a round of 70.

Harrogate’s John Parry was seven over after rounds of 79 and 72, well beyond the projected cut of plus two.

However, Yorkshire’s three other contestants retain hopes of working at the weekend.

Tour newcomer Daniel Gavins, from Leeds, had rounds of 70 77 and could qualify if the mark drops by a shot.

Malton’s Simon Dyson, returning after a seven-month injury absence, was one under through eight holes in his second round, but stumbled with a double bogey six at the next, after which play was halted.

However, the six-time title winner, who shot 75 in round one, has the class to make the most of his remaining nine holes.

Huddersfield’s Chris Hanson was a solitary stroke the wrong side of the projected bubble having played only five holes of his second round.

After a double bogey-bogey start, he recorded two birdies and is in shape to make the cut.