6th November 2023 | Big Easy Tour
Amateur De Abreu takes early Big Easy lead at Akasia
Fabrizio De Abreu made four birdies and an eagle on his way to a five-under-par 67 score in the opening round of the Altron Big Easy Tour tournament at Akasia Golf Club, taking a one-shot lead.
The Woodhill Golf Estate player displayed maturity early in his round, making four straight pars to ease into the first 18 holes of this 54-hole event. Once settled and in his zone, the 17-year-old got into his groove and made an eagle on the par-five fifth. He then gave a shot away on the next hole, but just as swiftly as he’d made that bogey, De Abreu made back-to-back birdies on the eighth and ninth holes to turn in 32.
The start to the homeward nine was almost similar to how he began the front nine, with four pars from 10 through to 13 followed by birdies on 14 and 15, both par-fives. From there on, De Abreu, ranked 17th on the GOLFRSA Men’s Open rankings, kept things steady and didn’t give away any more shots.
“I had a good round out there today,” said De Abreu, one of GolfRSA’s promising future stars. “I started well and stayed patient throughout the round. I started off nicely – with an eagle on the fifth – and that helped. I just tried to stick to my game plan, which we worked out before the tournament, and at the moment it has worked out well.
“A round like this gives you confidence because there are some really good players on the Big Easy, and to shoot a round like that is special. I believe in myself, and I am happy with the way I conducted myself. The course here suits my game well, but today, I just hit fairways and greens the whole day; solid golf.
“The plan was to play easy golf; hit fairways and greens and stay patient when things are not going my way. If you hit the greens here, the birdies will come. So, I am really happy with how I played and I am hoping to do the same tomorrow.”
Just a shot adrift and after a round of 68, England’s Harry Koning, Ruan Groenwald, Werner Deyzel, Travis Ladner, and member of the Papwa Sewgolum Class, Keelan Africa will aim to unseat the young De Abreu as they make a charge for the summit. Also impressive on day one of this Sunshine Tour development circuit was rookie Sabelo Majola, whose 69 on day one landed him in a five-way share of the seventh spot.
Majola has not made a cut in any Altron Big Easy Tour tournament this season, and after Monday’s round, the Royal Durban Golf Club member will enter the second round rejuvenated and hopefully make his first cut since obtaining his playing privileges at the Altron Vusi Ngubeni tournament earlier in the year.