Otaegui fires 62 to lead Tshwane Open

Waterkloof, South Africa (SportsNetwork.com) – Adrian Otaegui fired an 8-under
62 in Friday’s second round and he moved two strokes clear of the field at the
Tshwane Open.

Otaegui, who is winless on the European Tour, finished 36 holes at 11-under-
par 129. His total of 129 set a new tournament scoring record by two strokes.
Ross Fisher had a two-round score of 131 last year.

Merrick Bremner carded a 4-under 66 and he climbed into second at minus-9.
Edoardo Molinari and Trevor Fisher, Jr. also shot 66 in round two at Pretoria
Country Club.

Molinari and Fisher, who won the Africa Open last week, share third place with
Keith Horne (67) and David Horsey (69) at 8-under-par 132. Horsey shared the
first-round lead with Morten Orum Madsen, who stumbled to a 72 and dropped
into a share of 18th.

George Coetzee (66), Dean Burmester (68) and Wallie Coetsee (69) are tied for
seventh at 133.

Otaegui, who is mentored by Jose Maria Olazabal, got off to a quick start with
back-to-back birdies at two and three. He followed with four straight pars
from the fourth. He caught fire starting with a birdie at the par-3 eighth.

The Spaniard also birdied the ninth as he made the turn at minus-7. Otaegui
kept rolling with gains at Nos. 10 and 11.

Otaegui birdied the par-5 12th for the second straight day and that capped a
run of five consecutive birdies. He stood at 7-under through 12 holes, and had
a chance at shooting the first 59 in European Tour history.

“I was focused and didn’t know that I had made five birdies in a row,” Otaegui
admitted. “I was playing well and made a few putts, that’s all I was thinking
about. The best golf is when you think as little as possible, and this was one
of those days.”

The 22-year-old converted a birdie chance at the par-3 14th and got to 9-under
for his round with a birdie at No. 16. A birdie-birdie finish would have given
Otaegui a 59, but he parred 17 and stumbled to his second bogey in two days at
the 18th.

“Its a tough par-4 and it’s normally a par-5,” Otaegui said of the 18th.

Bremner played the back nine first on Friday and birdied the 12th and 13th to
climb to minus-7. He tripped to a bogey at the 14th, but atoned for that
mistake with a birdie on No. 16.

The 4-time winner on the Sunshine Tour stumbled to another bogey at the 18th.
He also bogeyed the first to dip back to minus-5.

Bremner converted birdie chances at the fourth and fifth to climb back up the
leaderboard. For the second day in a row, he birdied the eighth and ninth.
Those closing birdies moved Bremner into second place.

NOTES: Otaegui has the 36-hole lead for the first time on the European Tour
… Defending champion Ross Fisher carded a 3-under 67 and is tied for 18th at
minus-4 … Recently named European Ryder Cup captain Darren Clarke stumbled
to a pair of double-bogeys on the back nine to fall down the leaderboard.
Clarke hasn’t had a top-10 finish on the European Tour in nearly four years
… Johan Edfors withdrew during the second round due to illness … The cut
line fell at even-par 140 with 68 players moving on to the weekend … Among
those that missed the cut were Shiv Kapur, Tano Goya, Richie Ramsay and Andy
Sullivan, who has two victories already this season on the European Tour.