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Georgiou leads Africa qualifying for the Open

Andrew Georgiou of South Africa hits from the rough on the fourth hole during a practice round ahead of the British Open golf championship a
Andrew Georgiou of South Africa hits from the rough on the fourth hole during a practice round ahead of the British Open golf championship a

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - The motivation of returning to the British Open spurred Andrew Georgiou to a opening round of 65 on Tuesday at the African qualifying tournament for the oldest major.

The 26-year-old was one of three qualifiers from last year's event and wants another chance to compete for the Claret Jug.

"It helps having done it once before," he told reporters at the Royal Johannesburg and Kensington golf club.

"There are a lot of great memories from last year and knowing what is in store for you really motivates."

But with just three places on offer again, and a field of 75 to compete against, he will need much of the same in Wednesday's second and final round.

Georgiou leads from Englishman Darren Lloyd and South Africans Justin Harding and Jake Roos who each shot 66.

Desvonde Botes, who shot 64 in the final round of the European Tour-sanctioned Tshwane Open in Pretoria on Sunday, and Eduardo de la Riva of Spain were a further stroke back.

(Reporting by Mark Gleeson in Cape Town; Editing by Ed Osmond; mark.gleeson@thomsonreuters.com +27828257807 Messaging mark.gleeson.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net)

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