Opening round of 2013 European season delayed

Rain has washed out the opening day of the 2013 European Tour

season at the inaugural Nelson Mandela Championship in South

Africa.

South Africa’s Sunshine Tour, which co-sanctions the event, says

the first round will get underway at 6:30 a.m. local time (0430

GMT) on Friday at Royal Durban Golf Club.

European Tour tournament director Mikael Eriksson told Sky

Sports ”the fairways are very waterlogged and the course hasn’t

improved as much as we hoped it would overnight … further rain

early this morning put us back another few hours.”

Eriksson says organizers tried to shorten some holes to avoid

the water. Organizers were still hoping to play the full 72 holes

in the first edition of the $1.3 million tournament, the first

event on the 2013 Race to Dubai.