JOHANNESBURG - South Africa’s Toto Thimba Jnr is hoping to inspire a new generation of black golfers in the country, and his opening seven-under 64 on the Bushwillow course at Randpark Golf Club was the first step towards that lofty goal on Thursday.
Thimba was two shots behind American leader Johannes Veerman (62) and Italy’s Nino Bertasio on eight-under 63.
Asked what a win in his national open would mean, Thimba said: “It will make a huge impact for me. I want to be an icon and inspiration. I want to inspire people to do good. If I won the SA Open it would open a lot of doors for a lot of people and black professionals. That’s my goal.”
With two courses in use before the cut on Friday, Thimba ensured he posted a low one before taking on, what is considered to be the more difficult, Firethorn in the second round. Only three scores in the top-14 in the early stages of round one came on Firethorn.
Despite the low scores on Bushwillow, Thimba insisted the players needed to be at their best to post the low rounds.