New Euro Tour season opens in South Africa, Basson leads

MALELANE, South Africa (AP) Christiaan Basson holds the clubhouse lead in the first round of the European Tour's season-opening Alfred Dunhill Championship, with play being suspended Thursday because of lightning.

Charl Schwartzel is part of a tie for second.

Home player Basson opened with an 8-under 64 at Leopard Creek Country Club, starting the 2016 Race to Dubai just four days after Rory McIlroy clinched the 2015 crown. Basson had eight birdies and no bogeys.

Compatriot Schwartzel is one of three players three shots back, although the former U.S. Masters champion wasn't able to finish his final hole before play was suspended until Friday. Schwartzel is tied with Zimbabwe's Mark Williams and England's Matt Ford.

Swede Niclas Fasth, playing in his 500th European Tour event, carded a 68 to join a tie for fifth.

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