DURBAN, SOUTH AFRICA - DECEMBER 06, Rain delays the start of day 1 of the Nelson Mandela Championship at Royal Durban Golf Club on December 06, 2012 in Durban, South Africa Photo by Luke Walker / Sunshine Tour / Gallo Images

Johannesburg – The first day’s play of the Nelson Mandela Championship has been called off on Thursday at a soggy Royal Durban Golf Club.

The first round would now start on Friday morning at 6.30am.

“The fairways are very waterlogged and the course hasn’t improved as much as we hoped it would overnight and further rain early this morning put us back another few hours,” European Tour tournament director Mikael Eriksson said.

“The forecast wasn’t bad at all for today and we hoped the course might have dried out a little bit more but it hasn’t actually.”

Eriksson said they had tried early in the morning to shorten the golf course in an attempt to start, but with the additional rain it did not work.

“The good scenario is that we start at 6.30am on Friday morning, we play the first round tomorrow, the second on Saturday, have a cut and then go from there. We are still hoping to get 72 holes in,” he said.

“The tees and greens are not a problem, they are fine, it’s the fairways and rough that are bad. I’m hoping the sun is going to come out but there could be some more rain on the way this afternoon.” – Sapa