Wednesday, 11 December 2013
Adrien Saddier  (Getty Images)
Adrien Saddier (Getty Images)

France’s Adrien Saddier grabbed the early lead when The Nelson Mandela Championship presented by ISPS HANDA got under way after a seven hour delay.

A waterlogged Mount Edgecombe course had delayed play on Thursday morning until 1pm after wet weather in Durban.

Once play did begin, it was 21 year old Saddier who made an impression, surging to three under par through five holes.

The Qualifying School graduate, making only his third European Tour appearance, started on the tenth and after birdieing the 12th and 13th left himself a simple chance from three feet at the next to complete the hat-trick.

That left Saddier one ahead of home favourite Tjaart van der Walt and Swedes Joel Sjöholm and Jens Dantorp in the early stages.

Saddier converted a 20 foot birdie putt at the 18th to turn in a four under par 32, one ahead of compatriots Gary Stal and Romain Wattel, Sjöholm – fresh from a top ten finish in Hong Kong last week, van der Walt and Zimbabwe’s Ryan Cairns.

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Tournament Leaderboard

Pos Player nameNatHolePar
1VAN DER WALT, DawieRSA18-15
T2BALDWIN, MatthewENG18-13
4WATTEL, RomainFRA18-12
5BEKKER, OliverRSA18-11
T6HAHN, JohnUSA18-10

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