Africa Golf : Competition for Sterne and Kieffer

South African Richard Sterne and Germany’s Maximilian Kieffer lead the way after the opening day at the Joburg Open.

Sterne, a 31-year-old who is making his way back in the game after long struggles with a back injury, came second in Dubai last week and clearly fancies a sixth European Tour title.

He played the West Course today and has the East to tackle tomorrow, but has fond memories of it after winning this very event five years ago.

The pair shot first-round 63s to sit together on eight under par at the top of the leader board, with Kieffer pegging Sterne back after the home favourite had raced off after being among the early starters.

‘I had three good rounds on the East Course that year. If I can do that now, I’ll have a chance on Sunday,’ he told the Tour’s official website.

‘Some days it feels good and everything kind of happens. Golf is a strange game and you have to hit the right shots at the right time. I hit 17 greens today and was never in trouble.’

Sterne signed for six birdies and an eagle on an unblemished day, while Kieffer also went round without dropping a shot. Eight birdies did the trick for him.

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