BEL OMBRE – It’s not something you’ll find in any golf instruction manual, but for Brandon Stone, lying by the pool and taking long walks on the beach proved the perfect preparation for his opening six-under 66 and a share of the first-round lead in the AfrAsia Bank Mauritius Open at Heritage Golf Club on Thursday.
The South African ended day one of this tri-sanctioned tournament in a five-way tie for the lead with Frenchmen Romain Langasque and Benjamin Hebert, Danish teenager Rasmus Højgaard, and Scotland’s Grant Forrest.
They’re just one stroke clear of an equally impressive group of players in second place including European Tour winner Christiaan Bezuidenhout, the in-form Zander Lombard, rising Belgian star Thomas Detry and the experienced Keith Horne.
After what he described as a “tricky year”, Stone arrived in Mauritius seeking exactly the kind of de-stress he was hoping for. And the effects showed in his 66.
“This week consists of doing a little bit of practice, playing 18 holes and then putting your feet up by the pool. Yesterday for the first time this year I had a 45-minute nap poolside and then took a long romantic walk on the beach with my wife. It’s just spectacular. It’s a perfect way to end the year. You know, 2019 has been quite a tricky year with a lot of ups and downs, and to come here and de-stress is just fantastic,” he said.