Sergio Garcia leads Louis Oosthuizen at Nedbank Golf Challenge

Sergio Garcia leads Louis Oosthuizen at Nedbank Golf Challenge

At the PGA Tour's Mayakoba Golf Classic in Mexico, Matt Kuchar (40), Dominic Bozzelli and Web.com Tour graduate Kramer Hickok (26) opened with seven-under 64s to lead by a stroke from a 15-strong chasing posse.

Finn Mikko Korhonen sits third, three shots off Garcia, with English pair Lee Westwood and Aaron Rai, South Africa's Dylan Frittelli and Ireland's Shane Lowry a further two shots back on four under after a 3 under par 69. Also in that group is Lee Westwood (69), a two-time victor at Sun City.

"This kind of round does not happen very often but I played very consistently and kept the ball in play", said Garcia.

In short, it's a tall order and while the Co Down man produced some flashes of brilliance to get to three-under par with five holes to go, he played his last five holes in three-over as Garcia birdied the 15th, 16th and 17th. I feel like I'm playing nicely, I'm just trying to hit the fairways and the irons feel pretty good. I wanted to shoot something below 70 and I felt like I had a chance of doing it, unfortunately it didn't work out but we're still in the lead.

In contrast, Paul Dunne struggled to a six-over 78 as McIlroy got little reward for a moment of honesty at the 14th as he carded an ultimately disappointing level-par 72. He began with a birdie and twice reeled off three in a row.

But after birdieing the par-four 13th, the four-time major victor twice drove into the bushes, leading to sixes at the par-five 14th and the par-four 17th.

"I actually played pretty nicely on the front nine but it was a bad, bad finish". The driver let me down a couple of times which left me out of position and led to a couple of big numbers.

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"My thing is, I'm coming here with the goal‚" said McIlroy‚ rather ominously.

"Everything's good, the game is on the money, and it is about as good as I have ever played", he said after his 68.

"So I tried a bit too much and pushed it to the right".

"I probably wasn't swinging unbelievably but I kept it under control and kept the ball in play all the time which is hard to do here".

"I managed to guess some of the winds here right and that is very, very hard".

But an eagle on the 10th and birdies on 14 and 15 elevated the 2010 Open Championship victor up the leaderboard on a hard scoring day with players hindered by a swirling breeze.

"Over the years eight has always been a tough tee shot on the eye for me, I only see a three-iron there and it was a bit into the breeze today".

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