HARARE – Zimbabwean golfer Ryan Cairns’ bid to make the cut at the Australian PGA Championship in Queensland is in jeopardy after shooting a first round six-over-par that left him bottom of the pile.
Cairns started his campaign with a bogey on the first hole, followed with a birdie on the second before dropping a moral sapping three shots on the third hole at the Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast.
Although he tried to get back on track with two birdies in the last 15 holes, bogeys on the fourth, sixth, eighth, nine and 17th holes left him in trouble.
On the brighter side, Cairns will not be overly troubled with his first round six-over-par that sees him tied at 103 in Queensland.
Teeing it up with series of big names expected at the Gold Coast is a milestone on its own for the Harare raised golfer who believes the sport of golf is finally smiling back at him.
Cairns is making his first appearance in the PGA Tour event and the sentimental value of his trip Down Under has left a sense of poetic justice that all his hard work is finally paying off.
The Harare raised golfer worked as a bag-room attendant for two years at a golf course which hosted the Australian PGA Championship before earning his tour card in 2007.
Cairns travelled to Australia on the backdrop of an unconvincing Sunshine Tour season which has seen him miss the cut in his last three events Joburg Open, Africa Open and Tshwane Open.
The Australian PGA Championship is not only the richest tournament in 2015 with a prize pool of $1,75 million but it will also play host to a $1 million prize hole — a feature not seen in Australian golf since the early 80’s.
South African Zander Lombard finished the first round in the lead after a bogey-free five-under-par 67.