Kamte steadily finding his range

Meseshack Motloung

Meseshack Motloung

After a shaky start James Kamte settled down with pars and birdies to sign for a four-under-par 68 in the first round of the Nedbank Affinity Cup at Lost City yesterday.

That puts him in a better position for today's second round because he is two shots behind the first round leader in the event that ends tomorrow.

The Affinity Cup is a new event that carries prize money of R500000. It is the curtain raiser to the yearly Nedbank Golf Challenge.

Kamte, from the Eastern Cape, wrote a new chapter in South African golf history when he earned his card for the 2008 European Tour season at the tour's final qualifying school in San Rogue, Spain, last Tuesday.

Though it took South Africa more than three decades to produce a young black international campaigner, Kamte did it under trying circumstance to follow in the footsteps of 1976 French Open winner Vincent Tshabalala.

Kamte has double the cause for celebration after tying the knot on Saturday.

After the first round he was determined to end up among the top golfers.

"I know I can shoot low rounds. I've learned when to hold back and not get ahead of myself, and I am learning how to handle the pressure when I get into contention," he said.

"And I believe I have what it takes to spring a surprise on the guys domi- nating the local and international scene, maybe in the not-too-distant future."