Vincent in Volvo China Open contention

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ZIMBABWE golf sensation Scott Vincent continued his encouraging start to the season as he fired a flawless six-under 66 which left him just two shots behind early leader and local hope Daxing Jin at the Volvo China Open yesterday.

BY DANIEL NHAKANISO

Fresh from an impressive tie for fourth position at the Panasonic Japan Open on the Asian Tour last week after a closing 66, the 25-year-old Zimbabwean repeated the trick at the Beijing Topwin Golf and Country Club yesterday as he angles for his breakthrough win.

Vincent initially got off to a slow start with bogey at the second but compensated quickly and in style with consecutive birdies on holes number three and four.

The former St Johns College pupil made another birdie at the seventh before a stunning eagle-3 at the 510 metre par-5 eighth hole.

Although back nine was not so spectacular, he still didn’t make any errors and in fact picked up two more birdies on holes 13 and 15 for a superb opening 66 which equals his previous European Tour low round score achieved during the second round of the BMW SA Open in January.

Vincent will start the second round, two shots behind Daxing Jin, who surprised himself by signing for a flawless opening round of eight-under-par 64 to grab the clubhouse lead by one shot at the Volvo China Open on Thursday.

“I played really well. I’m really happy with my form and I have to say I would give myself 100 marks for today’s round. My strategy today was just to hit the greens in the regulation and I did that for 17 of the 18 holes, and the one I missed I managed a par, so that was great,” said Jin.

Jin is part of the record 42 players representing China in the US$3 178 000) event, which is celebrating its 24th consecutive edition this week as the oldest professional golf tournament in the country.

England’s Matt Wallace, who claimed his breakthrough win in India last month, closed out his round in style with an eagle-birdie from the eighth to trail by one in second place together with Italian Nino Bertasio.