• Saffas toil in Texas

    Frittelli struggled with his irons

    Dylan Frittelli leads the four-strong South African contingent at the Valero Texas Open but is already five off the pace set by Grayson Murray, writes WADE PRETORIUS.

    Frittelli’s 72 was a real mixed bag as he makes his sixth start on the PGA TOUR, his intended tour of choice.

    The two-time European Tour winner was one over through five early on Thursday but that run included three bogeys and an eagle at the 14th after he rolled in a putt from outside 26 feet.

    Frittelli made the turn one under after finishing birdie, birdie on both occasions making light work of the approach shots to give him putts from 6 and 3 feet respectively for birdie.

    A bogey, birdie start to the back nine kept him in touching distance of the leaders but he would play the rest of his inward nine in +1 with a three-putt bogey at the sixth (his 15th) his only blemish as he struggled for consistency with his irons. Frittelli would’ve expected to score better after finding almost 80% of the fairways but after landing less than 45% of his approaches on the greens, he might be happy to consolidate his start with a 72.

    Ernie Els was looking likely to be the top South African in Texas but he doubled the last after finding the hazard with his third to finish alongside Retief Goosen at +1 and a share of 64th place, 29 positions behind Frittelli.

    One South African, Tyrone Van Aswegen, has no chance of making the weekend after an opening 80 in San Antonio.

    Photo: Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

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