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EZULWINI – The country’s golfers could not go past the qualifying hurdle in the celebrated Lombard Insurance Classic.

The Royal Swazi Golf Course in Ezulwini was a hive of activity yesterday as golfers were in chase of a slot in today’s opening round of the tournament. The event, which is played under the Sunshine Tour banner, has a E1 million purse.

Seasoned professional golfer, Meshack Zwane, was lucky to avoid the pre-qualifier as he was ‘guest player’ from the sponsor.
Zwane told this publication that he was eager to leave a mark as making the field of the tournament proved a serious challenge in the past.
“Avoiding playing in the qualifier is a welcome change.
“I will give it my best shot,” said Zwane.

The rest of the local golfers in Peter Dlamini and Arthur Horne were at the fairway, but were unlucky to miss the cut.  The former celebrated birdies to finish on two-under-par-70. Horne, who is ranked 97th on the Order of Merit charts with earnings of E9 720, finished on a disappointing par-72. They were both eliminated as they were not among the top 15.

Winning the qualifier was visiting Coert Groenewald from South Africa, who carded an impressive six-under-par-66.
Today marks the opening round of the premier competition. The golfers are in chase of the E158 500 first prize. It is a PRO-AM competition, which is played in Better-Ball medal format. At least 60 professionals and the same number of amateurs make the PRO-AM field.

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