Home favourite Louis Oosthuizen made a fast start to join the early lead on day one of the Nedbank Golf Challenge hosted by Gary Player.
The Rolex Series was in Sun City for the penultimate event of the 2018 European Tour season and Oosthuizen made three birdies in his first six holes to sit alongside England's Lee Westwood and China's Wu Ashun at three under.
Westwood is a two-time winner at Gary Player Country Club before the event joined the European Tour schedule, while Wu is seeking a second win of the season after his triumph at the KLM Open.
Westwood and Wu had both completed 12 holes of their rounds and were a shot clear of 11 players in second including Masters Tournament winners Sergio Garcia and Charl Schwartzel.
Wu was a picture of consistency in making birdies on the 11th, 14th and second, while Westwood endured a roller coaster of a start.
The former World Number One birdied the par five second but double-bogeyed the next before making gains on the sixth, seventh and ninth to turn in 34. An approach to tap-in range on the 11th then edged him into the lead.
Oosthuizen birdied the second and fourth and then almost spun his approach into the cup at the sixth for a third gain of the day.
French duo Benjamin Hebert and Mike Lorenzo-Vera, English pair Ross Fisher and Aaron Rai, Finn Mikko Korhonen, Italian Andrea Pavan, Spaniard Jorge Campillo, Australian Jason Scrivener and German Maximilian Kieffer were alongside Garcia and Schwartzel at two under.
Four-time Major Championship winner Rory McIlroy was level par through four holes, one shot clear of playing partner and defending champion Branden Grace.