The chances of a fifth South African winner in six events in the Rainbow Nation increased as Darren Fichardt took the clubhouse lead at the inaugural Tshwane Open.
The 37 year old shot a seven under par 65 at the Copperleaf Golf & Country Estate as he looks to add to his Africa Open victory two weeks ago.
Of the six events co-sanctioned between The European Tour and Sunshine Tour on The 2013 Race to Dubai, only Scott Jamieson has managed to break the South African stranglehold when he lifted the Nelson Mandela Championship presented by ISPS Handa.
Fichardt started on the back nine and turned in 31, before birdieing the first, fourth and sixth - the second of which became the longest hole in European Tour history at 685 yards.
A solitary bogey at the seventh checked his progress slightly, but Fichardt was pleased with his display over the Ernie Els-designed layout.
“The swing is good and I’m putting well,” he said.
“This golf course is awesome - it’s very fair.”
England’s Gary Lockerbie, India’s Jeev Milkha Singh and Chilean Mark Tullo were all two adrift of Fichardt after signing for rounds of 67, with former Ryder Cup stars David Howell and Edoardo Molinari amongst the afternoon starters.