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Feb 22, 2024 8:23 pm

Erik van Rooyen rides front-nine 29 to lead at Mexico Open

van rooyen

Erik van Rooyen shot an 8-under-par 63 to take the first-round lead at the Mexico Open at Vidanta on Thursday in Vallarta, Mexico.

Scorching the front nine with an eagle on the par-5 sixth hole and birdies on Nos. 3, 4, 7 and 9, van Rooyen went out in 29. The South African mixed in an eagle, a birdie and a bogey with his six pars on the back nine.

Finland’s Sami Valimaki, who started on the back nine, drove the green on the par-4 seventh hole and converted an eagle to help secure second place by himself with a 7-under 64.

American David Lipsky joined three others in a tie for third with a round of 6-under 65. Also at 65 were Sweden’s Henrik Norlander, Chile’s Cristobal Del Solar and South Africa’s MJ Daffue.

Defending champion and pre-tournament favorite Tony Finau was tied for 29th after a 2-under 69.

Among eight players three shots back in a tie for seventh at 66 were Andrew Novak and Cameron Champ.

– Field Level Media

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