Four players share the lead after 1st round of Ein Bay Open
At last, it’s tournament-time again on the Alps Tour, and players are showing all their eagerness to give their best on the course after a long winter break.
They couldn’t find better conditions than what they had here in Egypt at Sokhna Golf Club, where the Ein Bay Open has started with four players sharing the lead after the first round at 66 (minus 6). The sun and a little breeze coming up in the afternoon, together with perfect fairways and smooth greens, gave way to 60 scores under par – exactly half of the field of 120 competitors.
The best cards of the day were returned by Spaniard Gonzalo Vicente Elena (6 birdies for him and no bogeys) and Frenchmen Frederic Lacroix (1 eagle, 4 birdies and no bogeys), David Antonelli (8 birdies and 2 bogeys) and Teremoana Beaucousin (6 birdies and no bogey).
While Antonelli, 32 years old, and Vicente Elena, 34, can count on a long experience in the professional rankings, Beaucousin, 24, is one of the most brilliant « rising stars » having started his career on the Alps Tour only last season, finishing 10th in the 2018 Order of Merit with a second place in the Open de la Mirabelle d’Or, last June in France.
The real good surprise comes from rookie Frederic Lacroix (pictured), 23, who turned pro in January after wearing the French amateur team uniform for many years and finishing his studies at the University; he is playing his very first tournament for a prize money – 40.000 euros, and a cheque of 5.800 euros for the winner, but – he assures – there’s no more pression than competing as an amateur, « it is still the same game, you always want to play at your best ». And this is what he did today : « I made no mistakes, really; no bogeys, the putting was working, I could always find the fairways and hit some beautiful irons ; so it was really a nice start for my professional career ».
Behind the leaders, three players are tied in 5th position with a 67 (-5), Spaniard Javier Ballesteros, Austrian Felix Schulz and Frenchman Nicolas Platret.
Tomorrow, at the end of the second round, the best 40 professionals and ties will make the cut and will go on playing the third and final day of the tournament.
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