Dutchman leads way at Open Championship international qualifier

Dutchman Tim Sluiter posted a six-under-par 66 to lead at the halfway point of the Open Championship 36-hole international qualifier at Royal Johannesburg and Kensington in South Africa.

Thirty-five of the 49-strong field who teed off in pursuit of three places at Royal Lytham in July were home players, but the top four at the halfway stage were all from overseas.

Sluiter held a one-stroke lead over Spaniard Jordi Garcia, with Brazilian Adilson Da Silva two back and Canadian Andrew Parr three behind.

A month after regaining a European Tour card with nothing to spare at the qualifying school – and a week after missing the cut on the same course in the Joburg Open – Sluiter had three birdies on each half and kept a bogey off his card.

He has happy memories of South Africa, having been part of the winning Dutch side at the world amateur team championships in 2006.

Team-mate Wil Besseling did not fare so well, slumping to a 78 and then withdrawing along with seven others.