Lightning Luke dodges baboon on birdie binge in Sun City

Fri Dec 5, 2014 10:45am EST
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CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - Former world number one Luke Donald had to dodge a charging baboon before grabbing the lead at the Nedbank Challenge in South Africa on Friday.

The Englishman missed the course record by one shot after sinking nine birdies to open up a two-shot advantage at Sun City’s Gary Player Country Club, but is likely to remember his round for an unwanted visitor on the 13th.

As he prepared to hit an iron, a baboon stormed the fairway and headed directly for him.

Donald moved away from the ball and allowed the animal to pass safely before composing himself to hit a good shot onto the green and sinking his putt for birdie.

Donald had birdied six of the first nine holes as he went out in 30.

He added three more on the back nine before missing a chance at the last to equal compatriot Lee Westwood’s course record of 62, set in 2011.

Donald, seeking his first European Tour win since the BMW PGA Championship in 2012, is 10 under par and leads by two from overnight leader Ross Fisher, who hit 70 in his second round.

"It was a fun day, every time you have one of those rounds where you feel at ease and calm and are hitting the shots you are trying to hit, it’s great," Donald told reporters.

"After being chased by a baboon on 13 I managed to hit a good shot into the green and make a birdie there, so I was very happy."   Continued...

Luke Donald tees off the 10th hole during the second round of the RBC Canadian Open at Royal Montreal GC - Blue Course. Jul 25, 2014; Ile Bizard, Quebec, CAN;: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports