Lowry starts strongly at season opener in South Africa

Offaly golfer Shane Lowry has started strongly in his first outing of the season at the star studded Volvo Golf Champions event in Durban in South Africa.

Offaly golfer Shane Lowry has started strongly in his first outing of the season at the star studded Volvo Golf Champions event in Durban in South Africa.

Last year’s Portugal Masters winner continued his good form from the end of last season to card a two under par 70 to leave him in a tie for 11th in the elite 33 man field. He hit five birdies in his round but also dropped shots on holes 4, 11 and 17.

He is joined on two under by countryman Padraig Harrington, England’s Robert Rock and Italian Francesco Molinari.

The field features the winners of tournaments on the European Tour last year plus players with 10 or more official Race to Dubai/European Tour Order of Merit tournament wins under 50.

The leader after Round 1 is Thailand’s Thongchai Jaidee who carded a near flawless seven under par 65. He leads by three from home favourites Ernie Els and Louis Oousthuizen. One shot further back are are group of six players on three under.