RICHARD Bland reinforced his solid start to the European Tour season with a tie for 38th in the Africa Open.

The Stoneham professional, who had been among the leaders after an opening round of 68, closed out the tournament with a level par 72 – a birdie two on the 17th hole pushing him into the top 40.

Sandwiched in between were rounds of 72 and 70 in the 42-year-old’s -6 total.

Bland earned close to €7,000 and now lies 62nd in the Race to Dubai rankings in a season which has already seen his run of five money finishes in six starts carry him past €3m in European Tour career winnings.

Fellow Hampshire professional Sam Hutsby was in the money for the second week in succession after an awful start to the season during which the 26-year-old missed his first four cuts on his return to the top division of European golf.

The Liphook professional finished in a tie for 60th – a final round of 67 moving him 14 places up the leaderboard.

Winnings of close to €3,000 improved Hutsby’s Race to Dubai ranking to 177th, with the top 110 retaining playing privileges for 2016.

Both Hutsby and Bland will tee up in the tour's next event, the Tshwane Open in South Africa, on Thursday.