Sihwan Kim was delighted with his first morning’s work at the Kazakhstan Open as he shot an eight under par round of 64 to sit one stroke off early leader Joachim B Hansen.
The American has been plagued by inconsistency so far this season, a tie for third in May’s Turkish Airlines Challenge the high point in a year in which he has missed six cuts on the European Challenge Tour.
The 26 year old enjoyed his first morning at Nurtau GC, firing six birdies and an eagle for his lowest score since a 63 in the second round in Turkey, and he is hopeful of continuing that form through the weekend.
“I’m very pleased,” he said. “I haven’t had a round like that for a few months so I’m really happy, and it was bogey-free as well – I haven’t had that in a while.
“The course is good. You’ve got to hit really good shots if you want to score. It’s tight so you have to drive it well off the tee – I actually got fortunate with a couple that I got away with.
“Putting is crucial round here as well. I putted really well todayand made most of the putts that I really needed to make.
“Two years ago I made the cut here so I know the course. I’m hitting it well right now so it seems to suit my game, but I just stick to the same principles of putting it in the fairway and going from there.“I would love to keep this going through the weekend and play smart, not lose focus. The big prize fund adds to it, it’s considered a Major on the Challenge Tour, so you always want to put that bit more effort into it.”