Bawden and Pulkkanen lead Cape Town Open

golf08 February 2024 17:20
By:Michael Vlismas
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Bradley Bawden © Carl Fourie/Sunshine Tour

Englishman Bradley Bawden and Tapio Pulkkanen from Finland made full use of the perfect conditions during the first round of the Bain’s Whisky Cape Town Open at the Royal Cape Golf Club to secure top spot on the leaderboard on Thursday.

Taking on a golf course with little to no wind, they shared a one-stroke lead on six-under 66 at the second of four Sunshine Tour and European Challenge Tour co-sanctioned tournaments.

Bawden was the early leader with a solid round that included two fantastic eagles on the seventh and 11th, three birdies and a single bogey.

“It’s a pretty decent start. I didn’t play well last week so made a few changes and it showed today. I hit a few nice shots and holed a couple of nice puts.

“I wouldn’t say I was overly aggressive. On this course there are some tough shots, so you have to keep it in play. If you hit it in the right spots, you can shoot a score, and I was able to do that today.”

Pulkkanen then handed in a bogey-free scorecard that also saw him sink an eagle on the seventh and add four birdies.

“I’m very pleased. It was kind of a quiet day. I didn’t make too many putts or anything, just played steady before the finish.

“I didn’t make any bogeys, so that’s always important. I also made a few good par saves. Overall I hit it good off the tee and didn’t make too many mistakes.”

A group of six players, including South Africans Tristen Strydom and Stefan Wears-Taylor, are just one shot adrift on five-under 67.

Benjamin Follett-Smith, who won last year’s tournament by one shot, was among those who teed off in the morning.

Starting on the back nine, the Zimbabwean managed to grab four birdies before the turn, with a bogey on the par-four 17th the only blemish on that nine.

The second nine produced one birdie and a bogey for a first-round score of three-under-par 69.


66 - Bradley Bawden, Tapio Pulkkanen

67 - Tristen Strydom, Romain Wattel, Daniel Young, Stefan Wears-Taylor, Conor Purcell, Alfie Plant

68 - Danie Van Niekerk, Shaun Norris, Ryan Van Velzen, Jack McDonald, Louis Albertse, Martin Rohwer, Lee Slattery, Albert Venter, Toto Thimba Jnr, Callum Mowat, James Allan, Justin Walters, Rhys West, Gerhard Pepler, Deon Germishuys

69 - Steven Brown, Benjamin Follett-Smith, Jovan Rebula, Oliver Lindell, Martin Couvra, Benjamin Hebert, Luke Brown, Anthony Michael, Haraldur Magnus, Hamish Brown, Sam Hutsby, James Mack

70 - Thomas Aiken, Jaco Van Zyl, Euan Walker, Richard Mcevoy, Joel Moscatel, Robin Sciot-Siegrist, Oliver Farr, Quim Vidal, Jonathan Caldwell, Jonathan Goth-Rasmussen, Ross Mcgowan, Pierre Pineau, Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen, Robin Roussel, Peter Karmis, Dylan Mostert, Mikael Lindberg, Ben Schmidt

71 - John Axelsen, Ashley Chesters, JJ Senekal, Oliver Bekker, Rhys Enoch, Dan Erickson, Neil Schietekat, Keenan Davidse, Dermot Mcelroy, Jonathan Broomhead, Aron Zemmer, Jamie Rutherford, Oihan Guillamoundeguy, Pietro Bovari, Hennie O'Kennedy, MJ Viljoen, Jake Roos, Michael Hollick, Hayden Hopewell, Christofer Blomstrand, Jbe Kruger, Daniel van Tonder, Nicolai Kristensen, Craig Howie, Robin Williams, Jacques Blaauw, Martin Vorster, George Mason, Keelan van Wyk, Heinrich Bruiners

72 - Jordan Gumberg, Gregory Bourdy, George Bloor, Lyle Rowe, Angel Ayora, Wynand Dingle, Julien Sale, Robson Chinhoi, Keagan Thomas, Philipp Katich, Mark Power, Michael Stewart, Martin Simonsen, Rupert Kaminski, Nikhil Rama, Borja Virto, Marc Hammer, Jean Hugo, Gregorio De Leo, Oliver Hundeboll, Maxence Giboudot, Merrick Bremner, Niklas Regner, Yurav Premlall, Christiaan Basson, Anton Karlsson, Joe Long, Tomas Gouveia, Keegan Mclachlan

73 - Bryce Easton, Chris Paisley, Luca Filippi, Alexander Levy, Jaco Ahlers, Adam Breen, JC Ritchie, Kyle Barker, Malcolm Mitchell, Lars van Meijel, Clement Berardo, Tom Shadbolt, Matthew Spacey, Alejandro Canizares, Tristin Galant, Mateusz Gradecki

74 - Lucas Vacarisas, Siyanda Mwandla, Franklin Manchest, John Parry, Victor Pastor, Rourke van der Spuy, Herman Loubser, Kyle De Beer, David Langley

75 - Erhard Lambrechts, Samuel Simpson, Jeppe Kristian Andersen, Ruan Korb, Dylan Naidoo, Sean Bradley

76 - Joachim B. Hansen, Jake Redman, Jason Smith, Connor Mckinney, Gary Hurley, Jacques P de Villiers

77 - Ronan Kleu, Conner Mackenzie

78 - CJ du Plessis, Gary Boyd, Ethan Smith

80 - Justin Harding, Jacquin Hess