JORDAN Smith staged a late recovery to salvage a one-over-par total from his opening tournament round of the year at the BMW South Africa Open.

But there was frustration for his fellow Wiltshire professional David Howell, who had been dogged by a shoulder injury in the lead-up to the European Tour’s 2018 curtain-raiser and was forced to withdraw with four holes remaining.

The 42-year-old from Broome Manor teed off at the 10th at Glendower GC but, after picking up a pair of birdies and two bogeys in his first 13 holes, called it a day after carding a double-bogey six at the par-four fifth.

Howell picked up his injury over the festive period and admitted before the SA Open that he would pull out if he problem showed no signs of improvement.

Smith, meanwhile, will certainly be looking to continue his involvement into the weekend after a rousing finish to his round.

Like Howell, he started on the back nine but posted bogeys in two of his first three holes as he went out in a two-over-par 38. Two further fives on par-fours at the fifth and seventh left the Derry Hill man up against it but he rallied superbly.

The 25-year-old bagged an eagle three at the 522-yard eighth hole and scored a birdie at the par-four ninth to end the day in the middle of the 155-strong field.

Chase Koepka of the United States is the early leader on seven-under, with England’s Chris Paisley a shot behind.

Smith tees off his second round alongside Marc Warren and Trevor Fisher Jnr at 12.30pm local time on Friday.