AS one North-East golfer bowed out of the South Africa Open another is leading the charge to keep the title in the region.

While Hartlepool’s Graeme Storm, who won the event this time last year, missed the cut after two disappointing rounds in Gauteng, Stocksfield’s Chris Paisley has a share of the lead with Frenchman Adrien Saddier on 13 under.

Paisley followed up his opening round 66 by shooting seven under 65 on Friday to climb to the top of the leaderboard. His round only included one bogey at the 13th.

Storm on the other hand couldn’t find the sort of magic that earned him his second tour title at the same venue last January.

After a frustrating opening round 75 he steadied himself to a better showing on day two but his two under 70 was not enough to lift him above the cut. He finished one over for the tournament, two shots shy of the cut.

Storm had hoped to put on a good showing as defending champion and in his first event of 2018.