Ekurhuleni, South Africa – Henrik Stenson fired a 7-under 65 on Friday to grab the lead at the SA Open Championship before second-round play was suspended due to an electrical storm.
Stenson sits in the clubhouse at 13-under 131 -- four strokes clear of Magnus Carlsson and first-round leader Merrick Bremner. Carlsson shot a 67 on Friday, while Bremner is 1-under through 14 holes.
"The way I played, I've had plenty of chances and I could have been three or four shots better," said Stenson. "But that's the same with everyone and I'm not going to be complaining about 13 under."
Several players, including 2011 Masters champion Charl Schwartzel, world No. 32 Martin Kaymer and world No. 39 Branden Grace, will resume second-round play on Saturday morning.
Defending champion Hennie Otto completed his second round before thunder and lightning descended upon the Serengeti Golf & Wildlife Estate. He sits at 1- under through 36 holes.
Stenson is seeking his seventh career European Tour win and first of the season, but he is also playing for a spot in next week's World Tour Championship. The 36-year-old entered the SA Open ranked 59th in the Race to Dubai standings and only the top 60 make next week's field.
The Swede began Friday's round two shots off the pace after Bremner fired a course record-tying 64 at the Masai Mara Course on Thursday.
Stenson then vaulted to the top of the leaderboard with a dazzling performance which included five birdies and an eagle on the par-5 eighth.
"I played really nicely yesterday and then when I came out, I didn't feel great on the range this morning and the first few holes were so-so," he said. "I had a couple of in-between chances on a few of the holes there and some great fireworks on the eighth, two great shots. I've hit probably more drives in the past two days than I have probably all season."
NOTES: South Africans have won the SA Open Championship 11 of the past 12 years ... This tournament dates back to 1893, albeit as an exhibition. Next to the British Open, this is the oldest national championship ... Last year, Otto beat Bernd Wiesberger by a single stroke ... The win was Otto's second on the European Tour.