Greene continues to amaze
Daniel Greene only needs to avoid falling into a pot bunker to claim his first victory on the Vodacom Origins of Golf Tour.
Daniel Greene only needs to avoid falling into a pot bunker to claim his first victory at the Eastern Cape stop of the Vodacom Business Origins of Golf Tour.
At least that’s the way it looked at Humewood Golf Club on Thursday after. the KwaZulu-Natal professional had following up his sensational first round 62 with a seven-under-par 65 to head the field with an awesome 17-under par 127 heading into Friday’s third and final round.
Playing this famous links layout for only the second time in his life, Greene has not dropped a single shot on his way to a three-stroke lead over the field.
He also came one stroke short of tying the Sunshine Tour record for the lowest first 36 holes of 126, achieved by Hennie Otto in the Vodacom Championship at Pretoria Country Club earlier this year.
But he could still rewrite the record books on Friday. The biggest victory margin on the Vodacom Business Origins of Golf Tour is seven strokes. This was achieved by Thomas Aiken when he won at The Links in 2004, and then followed by Fichardt when he won at Selborne Golf Estate in 2009.
And even the seemingly unflappable Greene cannot help being impressed by all of this.
“I’m very impressed. I don’t have a clue where this came from. I’ve hardly practiced at all during our six-week Tour break and never expected it.”
Such has been Greene’s dominance that in two rounds he has single handedly contributed R8 000 to the Birdies for Kiddies charity campaign on this series, whereby the Vodacom Foundation donates R500 for every birdie or eagle posted.
Greene’s nearest challenger is Ulrich van den Berg on 14 under. At one stage Greene was as much as nine strokes ahead before Van Den Berg responded with a solid 65 late in the afternoon.
And Greene has more capable challengers further down the leaderboard, with Jean Hugo at nine under and Jaco van Zyl at eight under.
But it is more the state of Greene’s game and his composure than his lead which makes it difficult to see past him as the new champion.
“I’m driving well and putting well, so it’s going very nicely so far. I’m also giving myself a lot of opportunities. I missed four makeable birdie putts today. But I’m just going to continue to take it shot by shot and stay in the present.”
There is a sense that should Greene break through with a first victory here, he will go on to win a few more. He is incredibly long off the tee, and also appears to possess a strong mind for the game.
“I used to get a bit hotheaded on the course, but I stopped that. I’ve never had a problem making a change. When I wanted to stop smoking I just quit and that was that. Same here. It wasn’t working for me so I stopped it.”
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