McLeod Victorious In Epic Final
Jake McLeod (Hills International) has won a battle of attrition to take home the 2012 Queensland Men’s Amateur Championship at Pacific Harbour Golf and Country Club.
McLeod started strongly and was 3 up, yet let slip golden opportunities to extend his lead on the second nine. Luke Humphries (Pymble) was patient, pegged back the lead and heading into the final 9 holes, the match was all square.
Conditions were not conducive to low scoring, but the match was of high quality with each player proving why they were deserved finalists.
When McLeod won the 28th, 29th and 31st holes, it seemed like a bridge too far for Humphries to square the match again.
Humphries, however, had other ideas and after a few errant shots from McLeod, Humphries found himself only 1 down with 3 to play.
McLeod steadied himself and looked to have taken back the initiative when he hit a great tee shot into the tricky par 3 16th. Humphries took two chips from an awkward position to leave a 4 foot putt for bogey, which he duly made. Needing only two putts to be dormie 2, McLeod pushed his first putt slightly long and missed the returning putt, to bring life back into the match.
After halving the 35th hole and watching McLeod hit his second shot on the 36th to within 10m, Humphries needed all of his resolve to hit a precise approach to 5m. After making birdie, Humphries had come back to level the match and send it to extra holes.
Both players were decidedly nervous as they missed opportunities to win on the first play-off hole, and so play continued to the par 5 2nd.
Humphries found the fairway bunker with his tee shot and McLeod pounced on the slight opportunity by reaching the green in two shots and putting the pressure back on Humphries.
With the thoughts of missed putts still lingering, McLeod quelled his nerves and holed the 1 metre putt for birdie and the Championship.
It is McLeod’s second state title after claiming the Northern Territory Amateur previously.
Both players are to be congratulated for their sportsmanship in what was a tense culmination of 72 holes of stroke play and over 72 holes of match play within a week.
Pacific Harbour Golf and Country Club are to be applauded for the magnificent condition of the course and the tireless work of all staff.