15 July 2014 – South Africa’s Luca Filippi finished just within striking distance of first round pacesetter, Hugo Townsend from Sweden, in the opening round of Junior Open Championship at the West Lancashire Golf Club in England.
Filippi from the Western Province carded a two-over-par 74 for a share of fourth in the prestigious biennial championship, presented by the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews (R&A).
Compatriot Kaleigh Telfer from Gauteng tied for 35th on nine over 81
Townsend, the son of former European Team Ryder Cup player Peter Townsend, reeled in five birdies in his first five holes and was the only player to finish the first round in red figures.
Filippi from Milnerton Golf Club in the Western Cape also used his proficiency with the quirks of links golf to put together a solid opening performance.
He overcame a bogey start with an eagle at the par-five second, however, back-to-back bogeys at the eighth and ninth saw him turn in one over.
A further drop at the 12th and double bogey at the par-four 15th pushed him four shots over par, but the 15-year-old Province junior rallied with a pair of birdies at the closing holes to finish just two off the pace.
Meanwhile Telfer grappled with the narrow fairways and punishing rough of the traditional links layout in the cold conditions and the odd drizzle just added to her frustration.
She birdied the par-five fifth but three double bogeys from seven to nine ruined her early advantage.
The Bryanston golfer managed to shave a shot off her deficit with a birdie at the 11th, but another run of bogeys from the 13th to the 16th, including a double drop at the 15th, saw her complete the back nine 40 strokes.