De Jonge starts well in Malaysia

HARARE - Zimbabwe's Brendon de Jonge was tied for 16th place at the opening round of the Cimb Classic in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia after carding a three-under 68 yesterday.

De Jonge started his opening round at the PGA Tour co-sanctioned event at the MINES Resort and Golf Club in fine form after firing a two-under 33 on the front nine.

The 32-year-old Zimbabwean started well by birding holes 3 and 9 on his outward nine during the 48-man field event that features 30 PGA Tour pros, the top 10 in the Asian Order of Merit and 10 sponsor’s invites.

On the back nine, De Jonge made two bogeys on holes 12 and 18 but was able to stay in contention due to the birdies he made on 14, 15 and 17.

Also on three-under 68 at the end of the first round were Martin Laird, Ben Crane, David Lipsky and Jason Dufner.

Troy Matteson had eight birdies in his eight-under 63 to take a one-stroke lead over fellow Americans Jeff Overton, Brian Harman and Robert Garrigus.

Matteson, twice a winner in his PGA Tour career, took advantage of his early tee-time as he avoided much of the steamy conditions at The Mines Resort and Golf Resort.

The American had missed the cut in his last two PGA Tour starts and had failed to break par in any of his last four competitive rounds.

But he posted his lowest score since a 61 at the John Deere Classic in July, when he finished second after a playoff in his best result of the season.

“The course is great,” said the 33-year-old Matteson.

“The grass is a lot like what I play back home. I love the course a lot.”

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