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Event News

Long day but Kiwi veteran prevails in play-off

New Zealander Michael Long has claimed the 2016 Men’s Oates Vic Open after producing an amazing recovery shot from a hazard to beat Canberra’s Matthew Millar in a dramatic play-off.

The pair tied on 13-under at the end of the regulation 72 holes at Barwon Heads’ Thirteenth Beach Golf Links after Millar birdied the final three holes to force the tournament into a play-off.

With huge crowds following the pair back up the par-five 18
th hole, Long hooked his second shot about 40m left of the pin and into deep rough inside the hazard on the first play-off hole.

But Long not only knocked the ball onto the green, he put it within five feet. After Millar left his birdie attempt just short of the cup, the Kiwi rolled in his putt to claim the title.

The 47-year-old is the third New Zealander to win the Oates Vic Open and first since Gareth Paddison in 2004.

It was the third consecutive year the men's Oates Vic Open has been decided in a play-off.

Long, who hadn’t won since the 2008 WA PGA Championship, said he was amazed someone found his ball and was fortunate it was sitting nicely for him to attack the pin.

“It was sitting up high so it was a little baseball shot and I said to my caddy `here we go, it's a wing and a prayer' and it came out perfect,” Long said.

“What can you say? Don't want to say it was a pure fluke because I had some idea what I was going to do. But I could not do that again in probably 100 attempts.

“I was walking in there and I was worried the ball might actually fall down to the bottom of the reeds. One of the marshals was saying to be careful when you walk in there.

“Didn't want to think about it too much and trusted my hand-eye coordination that I could hit a ball about three feet off the ground.

“That was pretty special - that one will live for a long time. I feel a little bit sad for Matthew because I had no right to make four from there.”

Long, who has a full-time job as a general manager of a golf course in Perth and is a director of the PGA Tour of Australasia, said he was thrilled to add his name to the Oates Vic Open honour roll.

“It means a lot. (Vic Open) has got a lot of wonderful names, Australian golf has got a rich and proud history and tradition and to get your name on some of these trophies is nice,” Long said.

Millar, who has now posted five runner-up finishes in his last 16 tournaments, admitted he thought the pair were heading back up the 18
th for the third time when he saw where Long had played his approach.

“You don’t assume anything in golf because you can always hole it from anywhere,” Millar said.

“But to honest, walking on the green I thought to myself `we’re a red hot chance to at least go one more hole here’ because I certainly wouldn’t have backed him to get it up and down from out of there (hazard).

“But well done to Longy. He played well today and he’s obviously played well through the week and didn’t make too many errors.”

Aron Price, who led the tournament at the half-way mark, and day one leader Scott Strange both finished tied for third on 11-under with six players a further shot back.

That included New Zealand’s Josh Geary, who had the best round of the final day a six-under par 66, and local hope Ben Eccles.

It was Eccles second consecutive top 10 Oates Vic Open finish. The 21-year-old was disappointed at his finish after bogeying the final hole.

“I had a few chances out there and couldn’t get them to drop,” Eccles said after his round. “It’s been a good week, I played pretty solidly and it’s a good way to start the year.

“It would have been nice this week to finish it off because of the home crowd but the game is there. I’ve just got to keep putting myself there and one will come.”

Third round leader Adam Blyth had a final round to forget, carding a six-over par 78 to finish tied for 19th at seven-under par.

That group also included the leading amateur, Victorian Brett Coletta, who shot a final round of four-under par 68.

Full men's scores
Live stream replays

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Level-headed Blyth takes reigns

Adam Blyth has taken the outright top position of the men’s Oates Vic Open tournament after the Queenslander finished 13-under-par this afternoon.

The 34-year-old enters the final day three strokes ahead of Matthew Millar (ACT), Michael Long (NZ) and Stephen Dartnall (WA) despite conceding his first double bogey of the week.

“It played really nicely, I ran away to a very nice start and made four birdies on the first six holes and then struggled a little and got caught on the seventh hole with a double,” said Blyth.

"But I’m still thankful I putted really well on the back nine today.”

Blyth, who returned to the PGA Tour of Australasia in 2014 after a two year break, emphasised the importance of “staying level” throughout the tournament to date.

 “I keep saying to myself whatever happens then happens; the birdies will come but so might the bogeys or double,” Blyth added.

“That took place today but hopefully I can cut that out tomorrow; I’m still happy that I stayed level and kept playing well.”

If successful, Blyth would be the first Queenslander to win the tournament since Kenny Druce’s 1999 men’s title at the Victoria Golf Club.

“It would be fantastic to win not only for the practice that’s been put in but also because it really does feel like a really big event with the crowds, the sponsors and what the two are able to put into the event.”

However Michael Long is also in a healthy position to become the first International to claim the tournament’s ultimate prize since fellow New Zealander Gareth Paddison’s 2004 feat.

Long captured a temporary lead when landing an eagle on his final hole to the pleasure of all those watching by the green and those tuned into the live stream.

“Those holes are not too easy particularly on the 17th because you’re hitting the par-3 with the wind on that tee shot and managing to get one reasonably close,” said Long.

“Then on the 18th I find that if you get your drive away it becomes a very gettable par-5 but to then make an eagle I was really happy because it was a very long putt.”

Long, who captured last year’s Cottesloe Open title, admitted he was happy to draw level with his long time opponent Matthew Millar.

“I don’t want to count how old I am but it is good to see guys like Matthew who supported the tour for a long time finally sort of break through and get on a bit of form.”

Millar’s opening round score sheet was very colourful with an eagle, a birdie, three bogeys and a double bogey featured on the first nine.

Nevertheless the reigning New Zealand PGA champion has since recovered with precision and has returned to the top four.

“I’m very happy to be there again, all the feelings are coming back again and I’m looking forward to tomorrow,” said Millar.

“Today I held some putts but, having said that, I left a lot of putts short again in the middle of the hole.”

He continued, “I’m not saying that you should always make them but I’ve had the ball on line on the green all week so that’s encouraging.”

“If it’s not too windy anything is possible because the greens are excellent.”

Meanwhile Wodonga teenager Zach Murray is the outright leading amateur of the tournament and equal fifth overall after registering 9-under-par with Scott Strange (WA) and Aaron Price (NSW).

“I was very happy, I rolled in a few bombs early which resulted in birdies which got the day started and I played pretty solid on the back nine so it was a good game overall,” said Murray.

“My mindset is that there’s pretty much nothing left to lose tomorrow; I’ve got to go out there like I have been.”

Earlier in the morning, local Curlewis Golf Club member Deyen Lawson captured an impressive day score of 6-under-par.

And what was the local star’s humorous larrikins response to the press?

“Yep, I just wanted a bit of a sleep-in tomorrow,” joked Lawson.

Courtesy of Golf Victoria 

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Maroochy River girls to play Pennants

For the first time in the 33-year history of Pennant Golf on the Sunshine Coast, girls have been included in junior teams for the 2016 series.

And, according to Brisbane District Golf Association vice-president Steve King, it has never happened before anywhere in Queensland.

The Sunshine Coast’s newest golf club, Maroochy River, has instigated the landmark breakthrough that has resulted in four of the competing 10 junior teams this weekend fielding at least one girl.

“It’s fantastic. Wonderful news for the girls and certainly a milestone for golf,” said Maroochy River junior pennant team manager Peter Owen.

“Hopefully this decision opens a pathway for girls on the Sunshine Coast to compete against the best in their age group, male or female. It certainly gives them an opportunity they previously have not had and I’m proud to say our club helped instigate the change in attitude among our delegates.”

Sunshine Coast Golf Zone director of golf, Scott Mayes, said waning numbers among junior boys had been one of the reasons for the admission of girls in pennant teams.

“The pennant delegates from each of the clubs in the zone felt an ‘all-inclusive’ competition was the way to go,” he said.

Maroochy River is fielding three teams in the 2016 junior competition, and five girls will make their debut. Each team consists of three players, with the boys playing from the white tees and the girls from the red.

The strength of the junior girl talent at Maroochy River is indicated by the fact that in each of their three teams, the No.1 player – the golfer with the lowest handicap – is female. The girls are Rhianna Lewis (handicap 3), Danika Coyne (4) and Sarah Wilson (5).

Caloundra is the other club fielding a girl in their team. She is Aneka Park, who plays of a handicap of one and will also be the No.1 player.

Mr Owen says the boys at Maroochy River have readily embraced the ground-breaking decision.

“We have some very talented boys as well, and they are looking forward to playing pennants for the club under this change in format,” he said.

They are well aware of how well the girls play, and how competitive they are on the golf course. No doubt there will be some intra-team rivalry, and if expressed in the right spirit that can only be good for our teams.”

Story: Tony Durkin

Photo: Rihanna Lewis & Danika Coyne

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Golf Queensland announces 2016 QAS Squad
Golf Queensland has today announced the Queensland Academy of Sport (QAS) Golf Squad for 2016, with six new faces joining three existing squad members.
Charlie Dann (Pelican Waters), Dee Dee Russell (Emerald Lakes), Lawry Flynn (Brisbane), Louis Dobbelaar (Brookwater), Shae Wools-Cobb (Maroochy River) and Steven Cox (Wantima) will join Blake Proverbs (Pacific), Gennai Goodwin (Indooroopilly) and Rebecca Kay (Coolangatta-Tweed) to make up this year's team.
The QAS Golf Program is aimed at players who have the potential and commitment to succeed at elite level competition golf. 

The selection of squad members is based on recent state, national and international tournament performances as well as their commitment to continuing development in all aspects of their games, including technical, physical and mental.

Golf Queensland Head Coach Tony Meyer said the QAS Squad forms the pinnacle of the Golf Queensland High Performance Program.

"All players selected this year have earned their spots on the squad," Mr Meyer said.

"We are also extremely lucky to have a great team of coaches and sports science providers which the elite athletes will have access to."

"It is an excellent opportunity for the athletes to improve their skills and work towards their goals of becoming elite professionals."

The QAS Golf Program had a number of standout achievements in 2015, specifically through Cameron Smith, Jake McLeod and Taylor Macdonald.
Smith had a breakout year after placing fourth at the U.S. Open, ranked within the Top 100 World Golf Rankings and earned a US PGA Tour Card.
Macdonald last week secured his status for 2016 at the Final Stage of Qualifying School for the PGA Tour of Australasia. A top five finish earning him a spot in Exemption Category 10 for the duration of the 2016 season.
After a successful amateur career and Leading Amateur at the 2015 Isuzu Queensland Open, Jake McLeod placed 11th at Qualifying School placing him in Exemption Category 13 for the 2016 season.
The 2016 QAS Squad is now proudly supported by Titleist. 

The Queensland Academy of Sport Golf Program is conducted with the assistance of the Queensland Government and forms the pinnacle of the Golf Queensland High Performance Program. 

The QAS Golf Program, which commenced in July 2001, is designed to assist Queensland's most talented amateur players in reaching their full potential within the amateur golf ranks. 
QAS scholarship holders have access to world-class coaching and support services including sport science, strength and conditioning, medical, career and education in addition to financial support for competition and training costs, depending on the level of their scholarship.

Steven Cox at the NSW Amateur. Credit: Golf NSW

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Interstate golfers dominate to win Tasmanian Junior Masters

A COURSE record was set as two interstate golfers took out the 2016 Tasmanian Junior Masters tournament on Friday.

Queensland's Kirsty Hodgkins dominated the female field to beat the old course record set at the Ulverstone Golf Club by three shots.

The 17-year-old finished the event 10 under the card and three strokes clear of Tasmania's Zahara Lemon on seven-under.

Chloe Thornton, from the New South Wales Golf Club, finished third on four-under-par.

Victoria's Matias Sanchez won the boys division as the 17-year-old Royal Melbourne member finished on three-under-par and captured the title by two strokes from New South Wales' Christopher Fan and Western Australia's Fred Lee, both on one-under.

The leading Tasmanian was Launceston Golf Club's Thomas Rehrmann on 11-over-par and in 18th position.

Following her win on Friday Hodgkins said 10 under par was one of her best results and she really enjoyed playing at the Ulverstone Golf Club.

"It would be one of my best results and I really enjoyed playing here at Ulverstone," Hodgkins said.

"I thought it would be really tough and the competition from Zahara and Chloe was pretty close so I'm really happy with the win."

Sanchez said he was pleased the weather was kind on Friday as he was worried about the challenged of a shortened competition.

"I was very happy in the end because it's difficult only having the two rounds," Sanchez said.

"It was a really strong field this year so I'd say this is one of my best wins and I quite like the course here in Ulverstone.

"It's very similar to the courses I play back in Victoria which helped me today."

Story credit: The Advocate

WINNERS: Kirsty Hodgkins, of Queensland, and Matias Sanchez, of Victoria, were winners of the Tasmanian Junior Masters tournament. Picture: Brodie Weeding.

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Ruffels makes cut, Day misses

An ''under the weather'' Jason Day suffered a rare missed cut at the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in California today, but rookie professional Ryan Ruffels continued to impress by getting through to the weekend.

Day, who began the week with a virus, carded 72-74 to finish two-over par and outside the cutline for the first time in a US PGA Tour tournament since  July, 2015. He missed just two cuts all last season, his breakthrough year in which he won five times, but Day's whole family has been impacted by illness in the past week and he said he did not pick up a golf club until Thursday's opening round in California.

"It's just one week. You can't live and die by one week,'' said Day. "It's not the last cut I'm going to miss. Hopefully it is the last cut I miss this year.''

Ruffels, the 17-year-old Melbournian who turned professional a few weeks ago, is playing on invitation and hoping to make enough money in a few starts this season to secure a playing card for 2017.

He reached four-under at one point today playing on Torrey's south course, the same course that he won the Callaway world junior championship, but he gave back shots with bogeys at the 11th and 12th holes and another from the greenside bunker at the 17th.

The Victorian Institute of Sport graduate and member of Golf Australia's rookie squad of young professionals carded a one-over par 73 for the day and is one-under overall through two rounds.

Day was not the only big name to miss the cut; world No. 3 Rickie Fowler also suffered the same fate and so did Phil Mickelson. Gary Woodland of the United States  and KJ Choi of South Korea lead the Open at nine-under par through two rounds.

Meanwhile Perth's Minjee Lee is three-under par, five shots from the lead, after two rounds of the LPGA's season-opening event in the Bahamas. Lee is tied-20th.

Story courtesy of Golf Australia

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2015 Queensland Hickory Shaft Championship

On Friday 23 October 2015 eighteen Australian Golf Heritage Society members and guests assembled on the links at Royal Queensland Golf Club to contest the inaugural Queensland Hickory Shaft Championship.

AGHS (Queensland Chapter) was pleased to welcome interstate AGHS members Rob Downie and Michael Sheret who made special efforts to attend. We were also delighted to welcome non-AGHS members Joe Janison (Brisbane Golf Club), Chris Webster, Chris Dower and Geoff Fairweather (all from Wynnum Golf Club), who helped make up a healthy field for the first running of the event.

The Championship
The Championship, an eighteen hole stroke-play event, was won by Alan Grieve with a score of 79 strokes. Considering the windy conditions, difficult bunkers, and speedy greens and surrounds, this was a wondrous round of golf. Being a previous winner of the U.S. Hickory Open Championship and double winner of the Australian Hickory Shaft Championship, it was a rock-solid performance by the firm favourite. In second place, with an equally impressive round of 83 strokes, was former Royal Queensland Golf Club Captain Ralph Heading. In third place, with a fine round of 85 strokes, was PGA member and Director of Golf at Brisbane Golf Club Joe Janison.

The Captain’s Trophy
The Captain’s Trophy, an eighteen hole handicap stroke-play event held in conjunction with the Championship, was also won by Alan Grieve with a nett score of 71 (off a handicap of 8). Alan was five strokes clear of his nearest rival, Ross Haslam, who had a nett score of 76 (off a handicap of 11). Third place was shared by Ross Bishop (off a handicap of 10) and Chris Webster (off a handicap of 13) with nett scores of 80.

Nearest The Pins
Ensuring an almost clean-sweep for the day, the winner of the nearest-the-pin prize on the 4th hole was Alan Grieve. The nearest-the-pin winner on the difficult 11th hole was ever-reliable Ross Haslam.

Presentations and Dinner
A very enjoyable day was had by all and we were extremely pleased to be joined at dinner by the Chapter’s Patron, Charlie Earp. After presentations, Michael Sheret gave a brief description of the historical displays installed for the day around the clubhouse and the ‘special’ putters he had supplied for the enjoyment of all.

Drinks, a nourishing dinner and stories of the day’s events were then shared. They were preceded by a secular grace recited in perfect Scots brogue by Dr Sheret—it went as follows:

Gowfers Grace
Some hae meat and cannae eat
And some wad eat that want it
But we've been on the links taeday
An' aw oor troubles blown away
An' here we sit
We hae oor drink
An' afore ye think
 O' aw the putts that didnae sink
Think o' the wan that sank it
An be gled ye didnae shank it
Noo we hae meat
An we cin eat
So yays yir paws
An open yir jaws
An let yir gods be thankit...

with apologies to Robert Burns

AGHS Queensland Chapter would like to thank the Members and Committee of Royal Queensland Golf Club for making their marvellous links, practice facilities and clubhouse available for the running of this event.

In particular, would like to express our gratitude to the RQGC Match and Greens Committee and especially the Club’s President Andrew Corrigan, Captain Suddy MacKechnie and Vice-president Rob King-Scott for their ongoing support of AHGS and hickory golf in Queensland.

We would also like to thank RQGC Golf Operations Manager Steve Rhind for his exceptional management of the event (and the nine others we have held so far this year), General Manager Tim McGahon, Executive Assistant and Event Manager Cathy Keighley, and the house staff for providing such a well organised and delicious dinner.

Andrew Baker (Captain - AGHS Queensland Chapter)

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In-form Dann has an eye on Europe

Pelican Waters golfer Charlie Dann is proving to be one of the best amateur players in the country after securing second place in the esteemed Lake Macquarie Amateur event.

Dann finished the tournament 10-under par, shooting rounds of 70, 68, 73 and 67 respectively.

The top two finishes capped off an impressive run for the ex-Gympie-based golfer, whose fourth place in the Keperra Bowl and third place in the Australia Master of the Amateurs at the notorious Royal Melbourne golf course have seen his national ranking cemented well inside the top 20.

Given his latest achievements, a professional career looks likely.

But Dann insists there is still a lot of golf to play before then.

"Just contending in these major amateur events is an important stepping stone to a professional career," Dann said.

"My goal for 2016 is to try and play internationally in Europe; I want to be a contender in the biggest events."

And according to former coach Patrick Jones, that could happen sooner rather than later.

"Charlie has the temperament of a great golfer and that was evident early on," Jones said.

"It is not easy but I can see him being very successful down the track."

Dann will now set his sights on the Queensland men's team that will compete in the interstate series in coming months.

Story courtesy of Sunshine Coast Daily

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Queenslander Dobbelaar added to national squad

Three of Australia’s most prodigious young talents have been added to Golf Australia’s national squad.

Queenslander Louis Dobbelaar, West Australian Min Woo Lee and Victorian Cameron John have been added as junior members.

Aside from rewarding recent outstanding performances, Golf Australia high performance director Brad James said their selection would enable them to have access to more international tournaments, along with increased resources and expertise to help them take the next step.

“All the national coaches agree that Louis, Min Woo and Cam have not only started to put some great results on the board, but that they each have demonstrated great development processes and the drive to push harder again,” James said.

“By earning berths in the national squad, we reward them, but also encourage them to take advantage of all the teams and programs they now have at their disposal.”

Dobbelaar, mentored by Cam Smith’s coach Grant Field, already has an impressive resume at just 14 years old.

The Brookwater and Royal Queensland member was runner-up in the San Diego Junior Masters and US Kids World Golf Championship in 2014 when aged 12.

He won the Queensland Junior title last month and represented Australia at the Asia Pacific Confederation Junior Championship in Taiwan in August, finishing a creditable 11
th in the teams’ event against competitors up to five years his senior.

Lee, 17, has made great progress in the past year.

Coached by his older sister and LPGA Tour star Minjee’s mentor Ritchie Smith, Lee won the recent Aaron Baddeley Junior International Championship in San Diego, sealing his entry to this year’s Emirates Australian Open at Royal Sydney.

He fired a course-record 64 against the pros to lead after the first round off the WA PGA in Kalgoorlie in October, then backed up at his home Royal Fremantle course a week later with a T10 finish in the WA Open after being right in contention with five holes to play.

Earlier in the year, he was joint low amateur at the Spirit International in Texas.

He was the West Australian Amateur champion at Hartfield last March, then aged 16, and represented Australia in the Argentine Amateur and Copa Tailhade in Buenos Aires in November having played for WA in boys’ and men’s teams for the past three years.

John, 16, is coached by Tim Wendell and is part of the Rowville Secondary College high performance program.

He won the Victorian Junior Masters to start a 2015 campaign that featured success around the world and back. He was second alongside fellow national squad member Becky Kay in the Asia Pacific Confederation Junior Championship teams’ event in Taiwan in August.

The Waverley and Commonwealth golf club member then went one better with victory in the 120
th Argentine Amateur Championship in Buenos Aires in November and capped a stellar year with victory in the Victorian Amateur Championship.

“All three athletes have produced results at national and international levels, which is impressive at their respective ages,” James said.

“They now have the opportunity to further their development with increased access to resources through the national program and we’re confident they have the dedication to take advantage of that chance.”

The trio joins Gold Coast teen Kay as junior national squad athletes, with Sydney’s Cam Davis, Melbourne’s Brett Coletta, Perth’s Hannah Green and Wodonga’s Zach Murray the “senior” members.

Former tier one squad member Ryan Ruffels has turned professional, making his debut this week on the US PGA Tour’s Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines near San Diego and added to the Golf Australia rookie pro squad for 2016.

Story courtesy of Golf Australia

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Queenslander Cox goes low in NSW AM

A surprise packet from Queensland has finished the opening day of the Golf NSW Amateur Championship with the low round at Riverside Oaks Golf Resort.

Steven Cox from Wantima Country Club north of Brisbane scorched around the Gangurru course with a 6-under par 65 with a round that contained 5 birdies, an eagle and a solitary bogey.

“I played solid. I knew the conditions were good for scoring before I teed off today. I tried to hit as many greens as I could, put myself in good position to hole some good putts and it worked.”

Cox felt his good score today came down to keeping his emotions in check, something he hasn’t been too good at before.

“It was all about keeping my excitement down a bit. I know everyone can get excited when they’re having a good round. I’ve done that a lot myself, got excited, and then made a few bogeys.”

“I was just trying to keep my head in the game and do what I have to do. Keep the routine the same. It worked.”

Cox, who has just turned 18, finished high school last November. He’s hoping to get a part time job so he can earn some cash and commit a lot more time to his game.

“I want to travel and play and get my ranking up as high as I can. I’m aiming to be number one in Australia in the men’s ranking. That’s my goal.”

He’s been getting a bit of golf in working towards his goal too. He played the Aussie Amateur Champs in Melbourne a fortnight ago, and the Lake Macquarie amateur last week.

Things really started to click for the teenager late last year, and the dedication seems to be beginning to pay off. His talent and dedication have been noticed  by Golf Queensland along the way, with selection in the QLD State Junior Team last year. He has just been selected in the QAS Program as well.

“I was really stoked to get in to the QAS. That was a big goal of mine. I hoped to get into it by then end of this year but to get into it at the end of last year, it's given me a big confidence boost.”

Cox is ready to find out how far he can go in the game, and to do it in his own way along the way. doing it yourself is a trait he admires in one of his idols, Bubba Watson.

I’m a huge fan of Bubba.  He does stuff his own way. I like that. I like doing stuff my own way and I really like that about him too,” he smiled.

Story Courtesy of Golf NSW. Read the full story here >

[Click to view the leaderboard]

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Canadian star Brooke Henderson to light up RACV Ladies Masters

One of the world’s most exciting new talents in women’s golf, Brooke Henderson, will make her first appearance at the RACV Ladies Masters at the RACV Royal Pines Resort from February 25-28.

RACV Ladies Masters tournament chairman Bob Tuohy said the 18-year-old Canadian, ranked 17
th in the world golf rankings, would light up the tournament.

“Brooke Henderson is a sensational player,” he said. “She has already won on the LPGA Tour and is going to be golf’s next megastar and we are delighted she is playing at RACV Royal Pines Resort.”

Over the past 27 years, Tuohy Associates has made a habit of introducing bright, new talent to the tournament.

“The Ladies Masters has long been a stepping-stone for golf’s future stars,” Tuohy said.  “We have a reputation for unearthing new faces that have plenty of golfing ability. 

“Karrie Webb played her first professional event at Royal Pines and went on to become the world’s best player.

“Then there was Annika Sorenstam, who won here in 1995 and again in 2002 and 2004.

“We introduced Yani Tseng in 2010 as an amateur and a year later she won the tournament. Lorena Ochoa was another who played in the event before becoming the world’s top ranked player.

“New Zealand’s Lydia Ko played in the event before she became the best player in the world and Minjee Lee finished runner-up as an amateur in 2014.”

The RACV Ladies Masters is supported by the Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland and promoted as part of the
It’s Live! in Queensland calendar of events.

Henderson said she was thrilled to be playing in the event.

“This will be my first time visiting Australia and seeing the Gold Coast,” she said. “I have heard wonderful things about the event, golf course and the resort.”

Last year, Henderson burst onto the scene when she won the LPGA Tour’s Cambia Portland Classic by eight shots and finished in the top-five at the Women’s US Open and Women’s PGA Championship.

She was an amateur at the time and her victory was the first by a Canadian since Lorie Kane in 2001.

Henderson is only the third player under the age of 18 to win on the LPGA Tour after New Zealand’s Lydia Ko and American Lexi Thompson.

A happy go-lucky person, Henderson is a creative player who has the ability to adapt her game to any golf course – especially long and challenging golf courses.

That’s because she hits the ball long and can comfortably draw and fade the ball when required.

Henderson, who made the Canadian national golf team at age 14, had a stellar amateur career winning the Women’s Canadian Amateur in 2013 and was runner-up at the 2014 Women’s US Amateur Championship.

As an amateur, she won three tournaments on the Canadian Women’s Tour and tied for 10
th in the 2014 Women’s US Open at the age of 16.

Henderson was the top-ranked woman amateur in the world before turning professional at the end of 2014.

Canada’s female athlete of the year in 2015, Henderson carries a 47-inch driver, which helps her generate plenty of power.

She is in the top-25 in driving accuracy (79.91 per cent) and greens hit in regulation (78.13 per cent) and ranked in the top-50 in putting average.

“I have big dreams, big goals ahead of me and I’m chasing after those,” she told “Hopefully, I’ll have a long career on the LPGA Tour.”

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Day defends as Ruffels makes pro debut

With Jason Day defending and Ryan Ruffels making his Professional debut, the PGA TOUR's Farmers Insurance Open will have a heavy Australian focus this week in California.

The pair are part of a 14 strong Australian contingent and while Day, in particular, will be under the spotlight Marc Leishman might be the Australian to surprise this week.

Day's thrilling play-off victory last year was the continuation of a string of high finishes at Torrey Pines but Leishman, too, has proved somewhat a specialist on the Southern California layout.

In seven appearances he has missed the cut only once but has two runners-up finishes and another top-10 on his resume as well.

He missed the cut by a stroke at last week's Careerbuilder tournament despite being 8-under for the three rounds played and in his seven rounds so far in 2016 has shot worse than 70 just once, indicating his game is in good shape.

The full list of Australians playing this week is: Robert Allenby, Stuart Appleby, Aaron Baddeley, Jason Day, Rhein Gibson, Matt Jones, Marc Leishman, Jarrod Lyle, Geoff Ogilvy, Rod Pampling, Cameron Percy, Ryan Ruffels, John Senden and Cameron Smith.

Every week on Tour is an important one but particularly so this week for Jarrod Lyle, Rhein Gibson and Ruffels though all for different reasons.

Lyle's quest to get back his PGA TOUR card continues but with the clock ticking after a missed cut last week the pressure continues to mount.

Lyle needs to amass $209,111 to earn back his status but now has only seven tournaments left to achieve that goal.

He played decent golf at last week's Careerbuilder tournament but with the cut coming at 9-under after three rounds it was a tough school where you needed to be better than decent to play all four days.

His previous form at Torrey Pines offers little encouragement with a best of T42 in five appearances but he will be highly motivated this week and after a five birdie back nine to shoot 66 in the third round last week he is clearly hitting the ball well enough to score.

For Gibson the week is an important one as he is yet to play his best since graduating from the Tour in 2015.

In six starts he has made just one cut and with a reshuffle of priority rankings looming at the end of February he needs to move up the list to have some security for the rest of the year.

Gibson is currently 37th on the priority list which dictates tournament eligibility and needs some good performances in the next three weeks to move higher in the standings.

Having not played the tournament previously, Gibson begins the week with a clean slate though would like to make some good memories by Sunday.

While the rest of this week's Australian contingent are well into their careers for 17-year-old Ryan Ruffels the first tee Thursday morning represents a huge moment.

The teen announced a fortnight ago that he had left the amateur ranks and despite his tender years he understands what an enormous opportunity it is to make his Professional debut at one of the biggest events on the world's biggest Tour.

Expectations are high for Ruffels' future and he will feel the pressure at Torrey Pines but he is in somewhat familiar surrounds having won a World Junior tournament here in 2014.

It will be different conditions and vastly different circumstances that greet him this week but it's an exciting way to launch what many believe will be a long and successful career.

Story: PGA

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Houston takes top honours at Q-School

Anthony Houston has secured his season on the PGA Tour of Australasia winning the Final Stage Qualifying School presented by Cobra Puma Golf at Sandhurst Golf Club.

Entering the final day three shots behind overnight leader, Callan O'Reilly, Houston fired an impressive 8-under 64 to finish on 17-under to record a four shot victory over fellow Victorian and second round leader, Jack Wilson, and Queenslander, Taylor Macdonald.

Houston opened his round steady making par on his opening hole before a hot run with the putter saw the Victorian add five birdies in six holes to his card in a round that produced seven birdies, one eagle and a lone bogey on the 11th par three.

"It's the first event I've won as a Pro, even though it's Q-School it's still a good feeling."

"I went to China Q-School last week and missed out and came home feeling pretty down on myself.

"Jack and Callan had been playing really well all week and I'd assumed they'd be three or four under, so I just kept trying to push and push and not stall. They are tough holes coming in an I just had to hit good shots."

"I think it helped not having any expectations, I just went out and played as good as I could."

With this first place finish Houston receives Tournament Exemption Category 7 (a) on the PGA Tour of Australasia for the duration of the 2016 season. His first tournament for the season will be the Oates Vic Open at 13th Beach Golf Links next month.

A playoff determined positions second to fifth, with Jack Wilson (13-under) Taylor Macdonald (13-under), Matthew Giles (11-under) and Chris Gaunt (11-under) rounding out the top five.

Players ranked two to five will be placed in Exemption Category 10 for the duration of the 2016 season. Those in this category are expected to gain a start in all State Based Championships as well as having a strong chance in gaining a start in a number of the tier one tournaments.

Those players ranked six to 40 will be placed in Exemption Category 13 for the duration of the 2016 season.

In addition to a Tour card, the three top performing players earn an equipment and monetary contract from Cobra Puma Golf, joining the likes of Rickie Fowler, Jonas Blixt and Graham Delaet as Cobra Puma Golf ambassadors.

Top 40 include
: Taylor Macdonald, Jake McLeod, Aaron Wilkin, Kota Kagasaki, Cory Crawford, Christopher Wood, Tim Hart and Damien Jordan.

Story: PGA Australia

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Dann holds on at Lake Macquarie

Despite rainy conditions throughout the tournament, twenty-five Queenslanders teed up in the Lake Macquarie Amateur with twelve players advancing after the 54-hole cut.


Queensland’s Charlie Dann carded rounds of 70-68-73-67 (278) to finish two shots back from men’s champion Harrison Endycott (NSW). Dann’s bogey free round consisted of five birdies with a solid finish to the tournament.


Early leader Shae Wools-Cobb shot consistent rounds of 70-73-72-68 (283) with 2015 Keperra Bowl winner Anthony Quayle one shot behind.


The women’s event was dominated by international visitors with Hye-Jin Choi “smashing” the Ladies course record with a bogie free round 65 (279).


Leading Australian and Queenslander Robyn Choi struggled with round three conditions carding 82 otherwise playing solid golf all week following her previous rounds of 70-70 and final round 70 (292)


Sarah Yamaki was QLD’s next best placed in a tie for T10th with rounds of 75-71-76-76 and one shot ahead of fellow Queenslander Karis Davidson.


Final Queensland scores


Round 1

Round 2

Round 3

Round 4


Charlie Dann






Shae Wools-Cobb






Anthony Quayle






Steven Cox






Kade McBride






Blake Proverbs






James Macklin






Mitchell Smith






Lawry Flynn








Round 1

Round 2

Round 3

Round 4


Robyn Choi






Sarah Yamaki






Karis Davidson






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Lake Macquarie tested by the best

Players have made the most of perfect conditions for the opening round of the Lake Macquarie Amateur held at Belmont Golf Club, NSW.


Last year’s women’s hot shot Robyn Choi is the leading Australian firing five birdies and two bogies to sit independently in 5th position carding a 2-under round 70. The women’s event is being dominated by a strong international contingent with reigning Australian Ladies Amateur Champion Min-Ji Park leading the field at 5-under.


WA’s Hannah Green is the only other Australian in the top 10 shooting one-under and tied for 8th. Fellow Queenslanders aren’t far behind with Sarah Yamaki shooting 75 for T8 and Gennai Goodwin T9 with Karis Davidson, Kimberley Crawley and Dee-Dee Russell.


WA’s Ben Ferguson posted the men’s leading score of 65 with seven birdies and an eagle for an impressive 7-under round.


Leading Queensland males Anthony Quayle, Douglas Klein and Lawry Flynn sit in the top 5 after each carding opening rounds of 3-under 69.  Australian Amateur top 8 qualifier Shae Wools-Cobb sits one shot back on 70 with fellow Queenslanders Charlie Dann, and Mitchell Smith. 


With over a third of the field sitting on par or better, today’s second round promises to be exciting as players jostle to make the cut of the top 66 players.


Queensland has 25 other players in the Men’s and Women’s field.



Anthony Quayle


Robyn Choi


Douglas Klein


Sarah Yamaki


Lawry Flynn


Gennai Goodwin


Shae Wools-Cobb


Karis Davidson


Charlie Dann


Kimberley Crawley


Mitchell Smith


Dee-Dee Russell


James Macklin


Victoria Fricot


Kade McBride


Georgia Clarke


Hyunsik Kong


Margarita Zakareyshvili


Dylan Gardner


Karen Kim


Steven Cox


Jarrod Stirling


Blake Proverbs


Drew Herbet


Parky Park



Stay up to date with the scores here

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Buchanan joins Australian Golf Schools

Such has been the evolution of Gold Coast-based Australian Golf Schools in recent years that its principal, Tom Linskey, has brought on board a professional to manage the day-to-day running of the coaching school.

And, with fate playing a role, AGS has secured a golfing guru. United States golf professional Paul Buchanan who, among his other talents is rated a Master Club Fitter, has recently joined the organisation as Dean of Instruction.

“This is an absolute coup for us,” says Tom, whose Australian Golf Schools operation is in its 37th year.

“Paul brings an outstanding USA pedigree with him and has a history of producing elite golfers. He is also the best club fitter I have ever seen.”

But, according to Tom, another significant attribute Buchanan delivers to Australian Golf Schools is a continuation of the solidarity of a business which has attained repeated success for almost 40 years.

“I have worked with Paul numerous times over the past four years and when he instructs it is like listening to myself,” he said.

“Admittedly, that sounds like I am blowing my own trumpet. But what it actually means is that Paul will be providing more of the same that has made us successful, but from a different perspective.

“As our longevity in this business suggests, we have operated with a very effective formula. And while Paul will bring with him new ideas and a wealth of knowledge and experience, we won’t be straying from what we know works best.”

Buchanan and his family moved to Australia from Utah four years ago for Paul to take up a senior position with Global Sports International as an educator on clubfitting and coaching for PGA professionals in Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Indonesia and South Africa. Melbourne had been the family’s base since moving to Australia.

“But great weather, combined with the many fine golf courses here, has been the enticement for Paul coming to the Gold Coast ,” Tom explained.

“For us it was a case of the right place at the right time, and we are absolutely thrilled to have Paul now teaching at our school.”

But while it is a coup for Australian Golf Schools, Tom says it is even better news for the students.

His stable of pupils reads like a who’s who of world golf – Lorena Ochoa, Natalie Gulbis, Spencer Levin, Peter Fowler, Ryan Fox and Anthony Brown have all advanced their game under the tutelage of Paul Buchanan.

Buchanan has been coaching professionally since 1988, but says he has had a lifelong love affair with golf and started playing when he was five.

“My dad, who is an avid golfer, was my mentor and role model. My first job, at age 15, was in the golfing industry, but my passion is coaching,” he said.


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Three Aussies earn full China Card

The first week of the PGA Tour China's Q-School ahead of the 2016 season was a largely successful one for the Australian contingent involved at OCT Kunming Wind Valley Club.

Jake Younan's
 final round of 3-under 69 was enough to see him finish second for the week and wrap up a full year on the PGA Tour China, while countrymanDaniel Nisbet was one stroke further back at 1-under in a share of fifth.

Queenslander Christopher Wood locked up one of the final two fully-exempt spots by finishing in a share of 14th at 2-over the card, despite a 1-over 73 in the final round on Sunday.

Earning conditional status were Sydney-siders Andrew Evans and Mitch Davis in a share of 19th, while one shot further back at T23 was fellow Aussie Peter Martin.

Theodore Coroneo
 was the final Australian to earn a place on the tour, coming in at T33, with compatriot Anthony Houston not so lucky, the Victorian missing out on conditional status by a single stroke.

Story: PGA China

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Aus Am: Queensland results

Our Queenslanders held on tight at this year’s Australian Amateur played at Metropolitan with commendable results. Eleven players made the match play event with three advancing to the next round.

Medallist winner and top-seed Charles Pilon was stand out of the week after qualifying for the 32 player match play after finishing the 36 Hole Stroke event 66- 72 taking out medallist honours. Pilon continued his streak winning all his matches confidently to reach the quarter final and top 8. Pilon’s run unfortunately came to an end against Wales’ Evan Griffith going down 6&4.

Shae Wools-Cobb also qualified for the quarter final after a T14 stroke play finish, taking out Victoria’s Matias Sanchez with a spectacular finish to make the top 8. Wools-Cobb made it an entertaining match however was defeated by last year’s Australian Open pre-qualifier Austin Bautista by one.

Queensland State player Karis Davidson was our last women’s hope after finishing T5 in the stroke play to advance to the match play tournaments. After successfully making the final last year, Davidson competed against current Australian Girls number 1 Hannah Green in an epic battle unfortunately suffering a penalty on the 17th hole after being square with two to play which resulted in the WA Champion winning by one.

Congratulations Scotland’s Connor Syme and Korea’s Min-ji Park who played stunning golf to win their respective Australian Amateur Championships, presented by Swinging Skirts.

Well done to all our Queensland Amateurs who participated in Golf Australia’s Australian Amateur #AusAm


For final results visit 
Golf Australia

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Syme, Park win high quality Australian Amateur Championship finals

Scotland’s Connor Syme and Korea’s Min-ji Park played stunning golf today to win their respective Australian Amateur Championships, presented by Swinging Skirts.

Syme, 20, will return later this year to play the Emirates Australian Open at Royal Sydney after winning an epic two-round final 3&2 over New South Welshman Travis Smyth at Metropolitan Golf Club.

Park, 18, similarly, won the right to play next month’s ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open at The Grange in Adelaide, but said later that she would need her mum’s permission to make another overseas trip.

Syme was outstanding in making just two bogeys through 34 holes of a back-and-forth tussle with Smyth. The Scotsman was three under through his morning round and was again three under through 16 when Smyth’s birdie try ran by, ending the match to rapturous applause from an appreciative gallery.

“I can’t wait to get back here and play the Open. It’s my first time playing in Australia and I think it’s great, clearly,” Syme beamed.

Park was equally impressive. The shy Korean ran in 10 birdies across the 31 holes it took her to better fellow Korean Ayean Cho 6&5 in a high-quality women’s final.

“I’m really looking forward to participating (in the Women’s Australian Open) … but I’ll have to ask Mum first,” she said.

“But I hope to be back, definitely.”

Park was unofficially eight under – a number Cho, who also played well, was simply unable to match.

“I was happy to make that many birdies. My putting was good and I think that was the difference,” Park said.

Korea won the international teams event, while New South Wales won the national teams title, both playing for a trophy honouring Ross Herbert.

For additional information, please see and for more stories.

Super Syme:

Park needs mum’s nod:

Smyth still a winner:

For videos and additional information with Syme, Park and Smyth, please see our YouTube channel at

Story: Golf Australia
Photos: Golf Australia

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Cheyenne Woods returns for RACV Ladies Masters

Cheyenne Woods returns to Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast as a former champion of the RACV Ladies Masters and should she reproduce the form that saw her sweep to victory in 2014, she will have a great chance of lifting the crystal trophy for the second time.

The popular American, well-known as Tiger Woods’ niece, is making her third successive appearance in the tournament to be played from February 25-28.

Born in 1990, ironically the same year as the inaugural Australian Ladies Masters, Woods has always looked the part on the golf course – stylish and oozing charisma.

As a rookie in the field in 2014, Woods soon worked out a strategy that fitted perfectly with her ability to play to her strengths and finished two shots clear of Australian sensation Minjee Lee, an amateur at the time.

She made light work of the unfamiliar golf course and became one of only a handful of players to break par in every round when she carded 69-67-71-69 for a 276 total – 16-under par.

Woods, who joined the Ladies European Tour in 2013 and currently plays on the US LPGA Tour, was denied last year when she finished in a tie for 26th.

RACV Ladies Masters tournament chairman Bob Tuohy said Woods was “an absolute asset to the event”.

“Cheyenne will add spark to the event,” he said. “Apart from being a past champion, Cheyenne is a very good player.

“She also has a nice presence, a lot of charisma and goes about her job on the golf course in a professional manner.

“In the US, she has a huge following via Twitter, Facebook and on television, which is important when it comes to the RACV Ladies Masters.”

Minister for Tourism and Major Events, Kate Jones, said securing the talented Woods was a win for the tournament and Queensland tourism.

“It’s fantastic to have Cheyenne back in Queensland where she scored her very first tour victory at the 2014 RACV Ladies Masters,” Minister Jones said.

“The name Woods is synonymous with world golf and Cheyenne will be a big drawcard at the RACV Ladies Masters which will bring thousands of visitors to the Gold Coast.

“Securing marquee players such as Cheyenne helps Tourism and Events Queensland achieve the objective of inspiring more visitors to experience the best destination on earth, Queensland.”

From Phoenix in Arizona, Woods is the daughter of Earl Woods Jnr, Tiger’s half brother.

She turned professional in 2012 after an All-American career at Wake Forest University. Her only previous professional victory came in 2012 in the SunCoast Series in the US.

Media Release:
RACV Ladies Masters

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Aus Am Queensland update

Tough conditions for Round 1 of the Australian Amateur match play played at Metropolitan Golf Club saw four women’s round of 32 matches resumed early Friday morning.

Eleven Queenslanders battled it out with top seed Charles Pilon, Kade McBride, Shae Wools-Cobb and Karis Davidson progressing to todays’ match play.

Medallist and top seed Charles Pilon continued his good form with a 3&2 victory over fellow Australian Haydn Barron.

Kade McBride defeated South Australia’s Matthew Lisk one-up.

2015 Mandurah Amateur winner Shae Wools-Cobb battled to take out NSW’s Darcy Joe two-up after turning through nine four-up.

Sung-ho Yung, the 2015 Korean Amateur champ took out Dylan Gardner one-up.

Great battle by Lochie Coleborn after nabbing one of the last four spots to make the match play, however going down to New Zealand’s Ryan Chisnall one-down.

Taiwan’s Lawerence Ting took out Queenslander Jarrod Stirling 3&1.

Collyer utilised local knowledge to beat second seed Anthony Quayle two-up in a high-class first round duel that continued right to Metropolitan's 18th green.

After opening round low score of 67 followed by 76 to make the match play, James Macklin was defeated by ACT’s Josh Armstrong 3&2.

Mitchell Smith was taken out by Scotland’s Syme Connor 4&3.

Karis Davidson had Sydney’s Chizuru Ueda dormie four-up when they resumed on the 15th tee Friday morning with Davidson returning to triumph 5&3.

The epic clash between 2015 Queensland women’s success star Robyn Choi and Hyun-kyung Park was called off for the night when they were unable to be split through 19 holes. The pair continued to the 20th tee this morning with the Korean world No.94 defeating Choi one-up.

Best of luck to our four Queenslanders progress to Round 2 of match play today

Follow Queensland updates on twitter

Men’s match play progress scores
Women’s match play progress scores

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Pilon nabs medallist honours

In the foosteps of Jason Day, Wagga Wagga’s Charles Pilon is the men’s Australian Amateur Championship medallist.

Pilon, 17, fired an even-par 72 at tough Kingswood yesterday morning, then watched the six-under-par 66 he shot at Metropolitan stand up in a delayed round marred by wild weather

Overnight leader Kevin Yuan, among those caught in the delay, returned this morning and faltered with four bogeys in his closing six holes to slide to three under a day after his amateur course record 64 at nearby Metropolitan.

Pilon, who like world No.2 before him, attends the Hills International School in Queensland. He has qualified for his second straight matchplay phase of the #AusAm after finishing 12
th in strokeplay last year.

He will take the No.1 seed into the matchplay, with his opponent Haydn Barron after the big West Australian was one of four men through a cliffhanger 15-man playoff.

Pilon was thrilled with the “awesome” result.

“It’s a great confidence booster going into matchplay. I went out at Kingswood yesterday and just tried to get it around in square and I did exactly that,” the Golf Queensland state team member said.

“I’m very happy … it’s very good for my world rankings and give me a bit more status (towards future tournaments). That’s another really big advantage of the result.”

The affable Pilon said he was fortunate to have played in the calmer part of Wednesday’s wild weather and finish his round before play was suspended.

“It was good to get that off in the morning before the wind and heat of the afternoon – it definitely helped me a lot. It picked up the last couple of holes, so I can sympathise with the afternoon guys.”

The round of the day belonged to emerging Queenslander Anthony Quayle, whose 67 at Metropolitan franked the form he showed at last weeks’ Master of the Amateurs without any tangible success.

“That’s been coming, for sure,” Quayle said.

“I feel last week at Royal Melbourne I was pretty close and the scores didn’t reflect how I played.

Then I played solid in the first round (at Kingswood) and couldn’t quite get it done, so it was nice today to have a few under and have a score that reflects how I’m playing.”

Quayle, who won the Pacific Northwest Amateur last year in Oregon, likes his chances in the matchplay, too.

“I’m a very confident match player. The tournament I won in the US last year was a top 64 matchplay event against a pretty strong field, too, so I feel like I can do it again,” he said.

“I like matchplay – I feel like I’ve got a pretty good game plan going into it and a good mindset of how I need to approach it and get on top of my opponent, so … if I believe I can win every match, there’s no reason I can’t get it done.”

Remarkably, a 15-way tie for the 61
st-64th slots into the matchplay was resolved in just one hole when Victorians David Micheluzzi and Blake Collyer, Perth’s Barron and young Queenslander Lochie Coleborn who were the only players to make par on the tough par-four 10th hole.

A four-way women’s playoff for three berths took two holes to resolve with Queenslander Lauren Mason eliminated with a bogey on the par-three 11

New Zealand’s Alanna Campbell made a par to advance after both made bogeys on the 10
th, with birdie and par good enough on that hole for Hannele Mikkola, of Finland, and Victorian Lisa Teo, respectively.

Story: Golf Australia

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From long way back, Dann chasing hard

There’s a picture of a young Charlie Dann caddying for John Daly on his website that, if you could caption it, would surely say “golf’s odd couple”.

Aside from golfing ability, the two are about as disparate as you could possibly manage.

Daly is the brash, loud American; Dann the impeccably polite young Queenslander who until a couple of years ago was quietly working in the Peregian Springs pro shop.

But that’s all changing – except for the parts about manners and volume.

Dann, 23, is charging; rapidly making up for what he’d tell you was a slow start along a different path that many at this week’s Australian Amateur Championship have trodden.

There are 30 Australian amateurs higher than Dann on the world rankings.

But only a small number, if any, are more dedicated.

Dann is travelling with the Queensland Academy of Sport squad this week even though he’s not yet a member.

He arrives at Metropolitan and Kingswood on the back of an outstanding run to third position – and leading Aussie – at last week’s Master of the Amateurs at Royal Melbourne.

Both are factors that all point to what could be the most important aspect of Dann’s game, this week and beyond – he’s starting to feel like he belongs.
“Absolutely, I’m starting to believe it for sure, now. It has taken a year, but it’s been very promising,” Dann said.

“Obviously being an amateur it’s all about getting experience and being able to put yourself into that position where you can perform at the high level.
“I’m starting to do that more and more now and to get into that position (last) week was what I wanted to do.

“It wasn’t really about winning or losing … it was about being here and making the most of the opportunity … and I think I did that.”
And that typifies Dann’s understated manner.

The Sunshine Coaster, who trains with QAS assistant coach Grant Field at Pelican Waters, started his final round at Royal Melbourne six shots adrift of world No.8 and eventual winner Aaron Wise.

But after an eagle on the West Course’s 12th, then birdies on the 14th and 15th, Dann was suddenly within a shot of the lead at six under for his round as most of the field went into reverse.

A hint of understandable nerves and one of Australia’s toughest closing stretches combined for three closing bogeys, but it didn’t diminish the achievement.

“It was a very enjoyable round, playing really nicely and I’ve probably never putted better in my life, so that was very exciting,” he said.
“I had a couple of birdies in the middle stretch of the back nine, so it was good to get that feeling (of contesting the lead).
“The greens were immaculate and it’s a privilege to play here.”

And that typifies the outstanding – and information-hungry – attitude Dann brings to the table this week.

Golf Australia national coach and QAS program boss Tony Meyer said Dann’s rapid improvement had been because he’d finally been able to dedicate himself.

“From 18-21 he was working at Peregian, so he couldn’t really focus on his game,” Meyer said.

“But he’s going hard at it now working with Grant and really coming into his own.

“Charlie’s a really good guy and a really hard worker. He’s the sort of guy who’ll hang around to see better players when he’s finished his round and learn something new.

“I suppose you could say he’s a late bloomer … his game has really developed and he’s shown some good results which is great considering how hard he works on his game.”

For his part, Dann is just thriving on lessons he’s filing away on some of Australia’s greatest courses – with Metropolitan and Kingswood adding to his education.

“The condition of these courses is amazing and I can’t wait to roll some more putts in on such beautiful greens.”
Sounds just like John Daly, right? Not.

Story: Golf Australia

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Orchard leads at Moss Vale Pro-am

Queenslander Ali Orchard will take a 2 shot lead into the 2nd and final round of the Moss Vale ALPG Pro-am tomorrow, after shooting a 6 under par 67 in tough windy conditions today.

It was an up and down day for the 24 year old left hander from the Gold Coast, who is playing in just her second season on the ALPG Tour “After a double bogey 6 at the first hole, I thought to myself you are just going to have to really grind this out today, the conditions are tough and everyone is going to have a bad hole somewhere” Grind out she did, Orchard  bounced back straight away with a birdie at the par 3 2nd hole, and followed that up at the 5th with an eagle 3 to get her into red numbers. Birdies at 7 and 9 saw Orchard make the turn in 3 under par, and after a back nine which included 3 birdies, an eagle and 2 bogeys she signed for 67.

Orchard just last week completed her PGA traineeship, and felt that for the first time in her career was able to go out and completely focus on her game. “For the past four days I have had nothing else to focus on apart from my golf. Normally I am stressing that I have an assignment to hand in or something else to do so it has been great for me just to focus on my golf for a change. I am so fortunate that I have such a great team around me who have stuck with me while I finished my degree and my traineeship. I really need to thank my coach Michael Jones, my sponsors Retail Food Group and Taylor Made, without them I couldn’t be out here with this opportunity”
Orchard made history in June earlier this year when she became the first female to win the prestigious Pampling Plate which is awarded to the Queensland PGA Trainee Match Play champion.

In 2nd place two shots adrift at 4 under par are Mexico’s Ana Menendez and American Sydney Cox, while ALPG legend and eight time LPGA tour winner Rachel Hetherington is lurking just a shot further back after a 3 under par 70.

At 2 under par is a group of eleven players including 2014 champion Sarah Kemp, Stacey Keating, Stephanie Na, Englishwomen Felicity Johnson and rookie Hayley Bettencourt.

Better weather conditions are expected tomorrow, the 2nd and final round will commence at 6:58am.

Story: ALPG
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World Cup of Golf returns to team format at Kingston Heath Golf Club, November 21-27, 2016


Melbourne, Victoria, AUS –
Tournament officials announced today that the 58th edition of the World Cup of Golf will be played at Kingston Heath Golf Club, with the format returning to team play (two-man teams) from 28 different countries squaring off on November 21-27, 2016, in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.

One of the most historic global events in the game, the World Cup of Golf has been played 57 times in 25 countries and will carry an $8 million (US) purse with the first-place team splitting $2.56 million. The event boasts an impressive and prestigious list of winners that includes the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Davis Love III, Fred Couples, Nick Faldo, Seve Ballesteros, Arnold Palmer, Bernhard Langer, Sam Snead, Peter Thomson, Ben Hogan, Tiger Woods, Ernie Els and Jason Day, among many others.

Kingston Heath is one of Australia’s best golf courses and consistently ranked among the top 50 courses in the world. The course is renowned for its natural charm and strategies created by its superbly crafted greens and bunkers. The signature par-3 15th hole is one of the classic short holes in Australia, if not the world.

Kingston Heath has hosted numerous prestigious events over its history including the men’s Australian Open, (1948, 1957, 1970, 1983, 1989, 1995, 2000), Women’s Australian Open (2008), Australian Matchplay Championship (1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992) and the Australian Masters (2009, 2012). Winners of these events include names like Tiger Woods, Adam Scott, Ian Baker-Finch, Greg Norman, Peter Senior, Karrie Webb and Gary Player.

“The World Cup of Golf has a long and storied history as one of the true international events in our sport,” said PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem. “On behalf of the International Federation of PGA Tours, we are thrilled that a course with the reputation and standing such as Kingston Heath will serve as the tournament’s host venue in 2016. The fans in the Sandbelt region of Australia are some of the best in the world and our players consider themselves extremely fortunate every time they are able to play in an event of this stature in the Melbourne area. Our thanks go out to the Victorian Government for their partnership in both the past and future events.”

Acting Minister for Tourism and Major Events for the State of Victoria, Philip Dalidakis said "We are thrilled to welcome the World Cup of Golf back to Melbourne's magnificent Sandbelt. It's another great addition to our outstanding major events calendar, which already contributes so much to Victoria's economy. We look forward to welcoming the world's best golfers and fans from around the globe to Melbourne in November."

“We’re looking forward to the World Cup of Golf this November. We are thrilled that one of Australia’s truly great golf courses will host some of the world’s great players, showcasing our great game to Australia and the world,” said Brian Thorburn, Chief Executive Officer of PGA Tour of Australasia.

“We at Kingston Heath are delighted that the International Federation of PGA Tours and the International Golf Association are bringing the 2016 World Cup of Golf back to the Melbourne Sandbelt,” said Club Captain Peter Clark. “Our Club has a rich history of hosting major golfing events and we look forward to welcoming the world’s best players and modern day champions to The Heath in November.”

“The World Cup of Golf was started back in 1953 for the Goodwill of the sport,” said Jon Linen, Chairman of the International Golf Association. “It has become an iconic international event, carrying the torch for golf on a global scale. The event has had a long history of being contested in Melbourne, Australia, as the world’s best players rave about the courses, the atmosphere and the great fans in the Sandbelt region.”

The 2016 World Cup of Golf will mark the fifth time in the tournament’s history that it will be played in Australia and the first at any course other than Royal Melbourne.

Previous World Cup of Golf events in Australia;
Year Winning Country/Players
1959 Australia (Peter Thomson/Kel Nagle)
1972 Chinese Taipei (Hsieh Min-Nan/Lu Liang-Huan)
1988 United States (Ben Crenshaw/Mark McCumber)
2013 Australia (Jason Day/Adam Scott)

The 2016 tournament will return to a 72-hole, stroke play, two-man team event format. The first and third days of competition will be the foursomes (alternate shot) format and the second and final days are fourball (best ball) play.

The top 28 available players of different countries from the Official World Golf Ranking as of Monday, August 1, 2016 (Monday after the PGA Championship) will choose their teammates for the competition. As the defending Individual Champion of the 2013 World Cup of Golf, Jason Day will qualify automatically as the top-ranked player for Australia. Day will be allowed to choose his partner. All other of the top 28 players have until Thursday, August 12, 2016, to commit to play in the tournament. The deadline for each exempt player to select his partner is August 26, 2016.

“It’s great that the World Cup of Golf is going to Kingston Heath,” said defending champion and No. 2-ranked player in the world, Jason Day. “The course has tremendous tradition and it is one of the reasons that Melbourne's Sandbelt is considered home to several of the world's great golf courses.”

The World Cup of Golf Information –
Web-site –
In 1953 when the inaugural Canada Cup and International Golf Championship—as the World Cup of Golf was then called—took place in Montreal, Canada, it was a relatively low-key event with just seven nations taking part. Since then it has grown into the greatest world team event in the game of golf, where teams of two players representing 28 countries compete for the prestigious title on some of the finest courses around the globe.

The tournament has been graced by the greatest names in the history of the game. Some winners: Peter Thomson and Kel Nagle (winners for Australia in 1954); Ben Hogan and Sam Snead (winners for the U.S. in 1956); four-time winners Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer (for the U.S. in 1963-64 and 1966-67); four-time winners Davis Love III and Fred Couples (for the U.S. in 1992-95); Gary Player and Harold Henning (winners for South Africa in 1965); Tiger Woods and David Duval (U.S. winners in 2000) and Jason Day and Adam Scott in the last playing of the event in 2013.

It was no coincidence that the first event was held in Montreal, for the Canada Cup and International Golf Championship was the brainchild of industrialist John Jay Hopkins, founder of Canadair. The trophy that will be presented to the winning team bears his name. Hopkins could justifiably be called the Founding Father of international golf. He believed deeply in golf’s potential to promote goodwill among all the nations in the world.

“Golf is a civilized and a civilizing game,” he once said. “It’s a game for good neighbors. It has the spice of good competition, while imposing the highest moral restraints.”

Hopkins’ devotion to golf led him to establish the International Golf Association in New York in 1952 with the mission of promoting, “International Goodwill Through Golf.”

“It is my hope that the International Tournament will serve through the spirit of the game to bind people together. The thousands, and hopefully, ultimately millions who watch these sportsmen must inevitably recognize the common bond that links all nations.”

The tournament became known as the World Cup of Golf in 1967.

Quotes about Kingston Heath Golf Club
Tiger Woods - "Unbelievable golf course, I've always been a huge fan of Sandbelt golf courses. The bunkering is just phenomenal. You don't get to see bunkering like this in any other place in the world. I've always loved coming down here and playing these golf courses… it' a treat. You don't need a golf course to be 7,700 yards for it to be hard. You can build it just like this.”

Ian Baker-Finch - “My favourite golf course in Australia and one of the World's best.”

Geoff Ogilvy - "We play a lot of unbelievable courses on the PGA TOUR, but Kingston Heath would be far and away the best of the regular tournament courses - that's not including the Majors. The US Open has stunning courses, but overall, most of the American courses are nowhere near as good as Kingston Heath.”

Ian Poulter – “Kingston Heath is totally awesome. Someone please tell modern day architects we don't need 
8000 yard tracks they're not enjoyable. Best yet.”

More information will soon be made available with relation to ticket and hospitality sales. Those interested for sponsorship related questions should e-mail WorldCupOfGolf@PGATOURHQ.COM.

The World Cup of Golf is the fifth worldwide event sanctioned by the International Federation of PGA Tours, joining the four World Golf Championships – Dell Match Play (Austin, Texas, USA); Cadillac Championship (Florida, USA); Bridgestone Invitational (Ohio, USA); and HSBC Champions (Shanghai, China).

About Melbourne, Victoria
Voted the world's most liveable city for the past five years, Melbourne is a leader in staging international sporting and cultural events, with its super-friendly people ready to welcome World Cup of Golf visitors. The city is famed for its laneways and cafe culture, known as Australia's coffee capital, and is home to vibrant arts, music and fashion scenes. Melbourne's food credentials are attracting global attention and the city is the gateway to Victoria, including 21 wine regions, the stunning Great Ocean Road scenic drive and abundant native Australian wildlife.

Victoria's landscapes offer everything from international surf beaches, islands and coastal experiences to Alpine mountain ranges and inland lakes. Victoria is also a popular destination for domestic and international golfing tourism, famed for its sandbelts and home to picturesque, challenging courses that suit every ability.

Media assistance is available for World Cup media wishing to develop destination related content, research locations for outside broadcasts, interview local personalities and access rights free footage. Please contact with any requests. Destination information is also available at

About the International Federation of PGA Tours
The International Federation of PGA Tours was formed in 1996 by golf’s five world governing bodies – the European Tour, Japan Golf Tour Organization, PGA TOUR, PGA Tour of Australasia and Sunshine Tour (South Africa PGA Tour) with the purpose of providing a forum for the world’s professional golf organizations to discuss issues of mutual importance and, together, develop and promote the game of golf on a global basis. As part of its mission, the Federation initiated the World Golf Championships in 1999. The Asian Tour joined the International Federation of PGA Tours in November 1999.

In step with global growth of professional golf, the International Federation of PGA Tours announced an expansion and restructuring of its membership in 2009, adding the International Golf Association and additional professional golf tours, including – for the first time – women’s golf tours: China Golf Association; Korea Professional Golfers’ Association; Professional Golf Tour of India; LPGA Tour; Ladies European Tour; Australian Ladies Professional Golf Tour; Japan LPGA; Korean LPGA; and Ladies Asian Golf Tour.

About the International Golf Association
The International Golf Association (IGA) is a not-for-profit corporation, chartered in the State of New York in 1956. IGA is governed by its six-member Board of Directors. Jonathan Linen is the IGA Board Chairman. Through its association with the International Federation of PGA Tours, IGA continues its international goodwill through golf mission and looks forward to the 2016 return of the World Cup of Golf to Melbourne and a new Sandbelt region course in historic Kingston Heath Golf Club.

# # #
PGA Tour

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Day, Spieth square off in Hawaii

Golf fans did not have to wait long for the duel that is causing so much anticipation in 2016. Jason Day versus Jordan Spieth is on from Thursday in Hawaii, and it is a world heavyweight championship rematch.

 Spieth, the world No. 1 and Day, the world No. 2, are teeing it up in the Hyundai Tournament of Champions, a 32-player event for tournament winners from the previous season, at the beautiful Plantation Course at Kapalua on the island of Maui.

Day has not played anywhere since the Presidents Cup in South Korea in October, declining Tiger Woods' tournament in the Bahamas and the Emirates Australian Open late in the year so that he could spend time with his wife Ellie, and their new-born daughter Lucy.

But the 28-year-old Australian will be well-rested and keen to pick up from the 2015 form where he won five times, including four of his past six starts, secured his first major -- the US PGA Championship -- and climbed to world No. 1 for the first time.

Spieth, who conjured an even better year, overhauled Day to win the Fedex Cup, the season-long points race on the US PGA Tour, at Atlanta in September, and along with Rory McIlroy (who is not playing this week) and American Rickie Fowler (who is) they represent the exciting bunch of younger men who have taken the mantle held for so long by the ailing Tiger Woods.

Day finished tied-third at Kapalua last year, flying home with a course record-equalling 61 on the final day.

Steven Bowditch is the other Australian in a field that is strong, including Fowler, Dustin Johnson and Bubba Watson from the top 10 on the world rankings.

Story: Golf Australia

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Choi and Lyon crowned 2015 Greg Norman Junior Masters Champions

Peter Lyon (Southport) and Robyn Choi (Royal Pines) have claimed victory in spectacular style at the 2015 Greg Norman Junior Masters celebrating 25 years of the prestigious Queensland junior event. Lyon and Choi overcame their opponents during four intense days at Palmer Gold Coast and Palmer Colonial this week.

The 72-hole event commenced on Monday at Palmer Colonial with Tuesday’s round played at Palmer Gold Coast. Wednesday was a rest day with the final two days at Palmer Gold Coast and Friday’s final 18 holes played at Palmer Colonial.

Over 224 eager and aspiring junior golfers from around Queensland participated in the 25
th commemorative year of event with each of the six divisions reduced by 60% after 54 holes on Thursday, leaving the leading 40% of players in each division plus ties.

Peter Lyon has finally had his break-through win claiming the boys’ championship title over Charles Pilon (Hills) after a gruelling six-hole playoff.

Carding rounds of 70-70-72, Lyon headed into the final round as the overnight leader with Pilon trailing by one shot. A double-bogey on the first hole was quickly forgotten as Lyon followed up with three birdies and two bogeys to finish on 73. Pilon’s burning desire to take home a title after finishing runner-up to Louis Dobbelaar during last week’s QLD Boy’s Amateur was ignited making four birdies, two bogeys, and a double bogey to put both players and playing partner Lachlan Barker (Glenelg) in a three-way tie heading down the 18

All three players hit fantastic drives with short approaches and birdie opportunities lying in wait, however each missing the green resulted in a scramble to secure putts to be in contention for the playoff. Lyon recovered from the bunker to make par with Pilon’s safe chip earning him a spot in the playoff, however a bogey on the last for Barker cost him his chance for a playoff and the title.

What happened next in the playoff could only be described as ‘nail-bitting and enthralling’ as Lyon and Pilon battled over six gruelling holes for the championship. Friends, family and fellow players came out in force to support the boys, both worthy contenders. Square, after square, after square hole, it was only on the 18
th for the third time that day that we found a winner.

Lyon’s troubled drive in the left trees and chip-out narrowly missing the water saw his chances start to fade leaving Pilon with an easy approach to the green. Not giving up hope yet, Lyon chipped-in his 3m approach from the fringe, fist-bumping in joy to make par and put pressure on Pilon to make his par putt after putting his approach in the back bunker. Pilon’s saving grace putt narrowly missed and saw Peter Lyon take out his first championship title. Both players are to be congratulated on their excellent display of sportsmanship, noted by Director Charlie Earp.

Charles congratulated Peter during his runner-up acceptance speech jokingly quoting “you could tell neither of us wanted to win” referring to the excruciating six hole playoff which was definitely a crowd pleaser.

Louis Dobbelaar (Brookwater) continued his successful streak taking out the 15 Years & Under Boys division after last week becoming the QLD Boys’ Amateur champion at Indooroopilly. At just 14 years of age, Dobbelaar’s rounds of 75-77-70-70 was highly commended by Tony Rollins, seven shots clear of City GC’s Sam Blackshaw.

Junior star Elvis Smylie (Southport) won the 13 Years & Under boys division carding rounds of 77-71-80-74 (302) with Sanctuary Cove’s Jae Young Han finishing two shots behind on 304.

Aces of the week belong to Peter Lyon who had a hole-in-one on the 135m 4
th hole at Palmer Gold Coast, with Jack Pountney following in style with an ace on the 17th.

Robyn Choi capped off a stellar year winning the girls’ championship after already claiming three prestigious titles within the past months including the Katherine Kirk Classic, Queensland Amateur (Matchplay), and Queensland Girls’ Amateur.

Robyn has been the commanding force in Queensland Women’s golf this year with a score of 9-under and rounds of 67-71-76-68 (282) to take out the title, a single shot ahead of fellow friend and state team member Kirsty Hodgkins (Redcliffe) displaying consistent rounds of 70-68-75-70.

Choi said she was “nervous but confident” with Hodgkins leading by one shot heading into the final round at Palmer Colonial. Choi’s exceptional five-under round included an eagle, four birdies and a bogey; a round much to be desired by all golfers. An eagle on the final nine further ignited Choi’s confidence with a chip-in on twelve putting the pressure on Hodgkins to deliver. Hodgkins returned with a consistent round which included four birdies and a bogey finishing 8-under for the tournament, and one shot away from the championship.

CEO Rae Clark also extended an invitation for Robyn to play at the 2016 RACV Ladies Masters played at her home course Royal Pines 25-28th February, competing with the likes of Karrie Webb, Katherine Kirk and defending Australian Champion Su Oh.

Min Kweon (Sanctuary Cove) returned to take out the 15 Years & Under Girls title with a score of 293 (75-76-73-69) after winning the 13 Years & Under division last year. Kweon was six shots clear from NSW’s runner-up Hannah Park (77-75-71-76).

Emerald Lakes member Lion Higo defied her incredible eight-handicap winning the 13 Years & Under division with rounds of 77-80-80-78 (315), with Eloise Taylor (Sanctuary Cove) outright runner-up on 324.

Special thanks to sponsors Palmer Golf Australia, Titleist, and Golf Queensland for their ongoing support during the tournament. Thank you to all the districts, delegates, and partners who assisted with the tournament as well as Adam Scott, Cameron Smith and Maverick Antcliff who visited the juniors on Sunday during the opening ceremony to provide inspiration which all juniors and parents thoroughly enjoyed.

Sincere thanks must go to CEO Rae Clark, Director Charlie Earp, committee member Tony Rollins and the Junior Golf Queensland Foundation team Scott Simons, Tanya and Doug for their ongoing efforts to deliver a fantastic and renowned Queensland junior event. 2016 will see the consolidation of the Golf Queensland and the Junior Golf Foundation of Queensland junior operations to form one united body for junior golf in Queensland with exciting developments to come in the New Year.

Enjoy the summer of golf!

Overall Boys Champion – Peter Lyon (285)
Overall Girls Champion – Robyn Choi (282)

Boys Runner-Up – Charles Pilon (285)
Girls Runner-Up – Kirsty Hodgkins (283)

15 Years & Under Boys winner – Louis Dobbelaar (292)
15 Years & Under Girls winner – Min Kewon (293)

13 Years & Under Boys winner – Elvis Smylie (302)
13 Years & Under Girls winner – Lion Higo (315)

Final round photos will be available later today on the Golf Queensland Facebook page

For all final scores please visit

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Senior the master of Sunshine Coast Legends

Australian Masters champion Peter Senior has continued a successful summer back home taking out the inaugural Sunshine Coast Masters with a final round score of 5-under par to finish on 14-under par over the four rounds.

The unique event saw PGA Legend Professionals compete at three separate E-Z-GO PGA Legends Tour pro-ams throughout the week where the players with the best three aggregate score contested the final round at Twin Waters Golf Club, where their score would then be added to result in a four round combined score.

Hosting the Legends over the week have been the Sunshine Coast courses Noosa Golf Club, Peregian Springs Golf Club and Twin Waters.

Starting the day already at 9-under par Senior was five shots clear of his nearest rival Tim Elliot who fired a 3-under round at the Cricks Twin Waters Pro-Am to move up the overall series leaderboard. Also in the lead group was Richard Backwell who was the outright winner at the same event and one shot behind Elliot on the overall standings.

Already a winner this week at the Noosa Legends Pro-Am and narrowly missing out in a playoff at the Australian Legends Championship at Byron Bay, Senior was at his consistent best.

"This has been a great week for me and I can only congratulate all the players on the performances this week in making it a wonderful series of events," said Senior.

"It's great to have golf on the map in the area again and thanks has to go to Ian Baker-Finch for his efforts in getting this off the ground with the host golf clubs."

Senior will now look to take a break over the Christmas period before returning to the US at the end of January to compete on the Champions Tour for the 2016 season.

Story: PGA Australia

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Senior wins at Noosa
Peter Senior continues to have successful Australian summer with a win at the Noosa Legends Pro-Am which starts a week of Sunshine Coast Legends events.

Carding a 5-under 67 Senior finished two shots clear of his nearest rivals Mike Zilko and Michael Barry.

A stellar field of over 70 Professionals competed including Ian Baker-Finch, who enjoys playing on the E-Z-GO Legends Tour when back in Australia, along with many other high calibre Professionals such as Mike Harwood, Terry Price and David Merriman.

The Sunshine Coast lived up to its namesake and Professionals enjoying favourable weather conditions all day with only mild easterly breezes to contend with.

One of the three golf course being played this week, the Noosa Golf Club has hosted the E-Z-GO Legends PGA tour for over three years. 

Local Professional and tour regular Mark Tickle was buoyed by the support given to the event by such recognised players.

"To have the likes of Baker-Finch and Senior wishing to come and play has really caused the club and local community a great deal of excitement," said Tickle.

"The club and its members love having these players come each year and I hope that we can continue to see such talent come and compete."

Senior started his round with two birdies and after a bogey on the par 3 7th hole was able to pick up a shot on the 9th to turn at 2-under par. His form continued on the back nine with birdies on 13, 16 and 18th holes.

"I can't remember when I was here last but I enjoyed being back," said Senior. 

"I'm thankful that Ian Baker-Finch invited me to get up here this week and I'm looking forward to the next few days."

Players will now head to Peregian Springs Golf Club on Wednesday for the second of three rounds before the leading players will compete for the Sunshine Coast Masters come Friday. For all event details click here.

Story: PGA Australia

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World No.1 Ko, Webb, Lee commit to Adelaide

World No.1 Lydia Ko will defend her ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open championship in Adelaide.

The New Zealander, still just 18, became the youngest winner in the tournament’s storied history when she saluted at Royal Melbourne in February.

She will be joined on The Grange Golf Club’s West Course by Australia’s top-ranked players, LPGA Tour winner Minjee Lee and five-time national champion Karrie Webb – the first confirmed starters in what will be a star-studded field back in South Australia for the first time in 21 years.

Ko, who went on to win the LPGA’s season-long Race to the CME Globe as the Tour’s top player for 2015, is excited to return to Australia, the scene of several defining moments in her career.

“The ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open really helped to jump-start a great year for me in 2015 and I am thrilled to be the defending champion,” Ko said.

“It’s always fun for us to play in front of our fans in Australia and we are already hearing good things about The Grange Golf Club.”

Webb, the record-holding five-time champion, is keen to kickstart her 2016 campaign with another title as she builds towards what she hopes will be an historic Olympic tilt.

“The Patricia Bridges Bowl has always been special to me – it’s a great trophy with some great names on it,” Webb said.

“It’s fantastic for the tournament to get back to South Australia and I can’t think of a better way to start a big year than by getting into contention on Sunday afternoon in Adelaide.”

Lee, 19, was low amateur at the Open at Victoria in 2014 (T11 overall), leading Australian as a pro in 2015 (T7) and is looking to continue that progression in Adelaide.

“It would be fantastic to take that next step – it would mean a lot to go well in my national championship,” Lee said.

“I can’t wait to get to Adelaide and take on the world’s best players in our own backyard again.”

South Australian Minister for Tourism Leon Bignell said securing these high-profile players was a huge boost for the tournament.

“To have professionals of this calibre commit so early is an excellent indicator of the high standard international event we can all look forward to in February,” Mr Bignell said.

“No doubt fans from around the globe will turn their attention to Adelaide to watch the performance of the world’s best golfers.

“We want to welcome people from around Australia and the world to the beautiful Grange golf course in our stunning capital, Adelaide.

“The state’s visitor economy is expected to feel the effects with a healthy boost of $3.7 million expected during the Open.”

Golf Australia’s tournament director Trevor Herden was thrilled with the early interest from the world’s best players.

“We are extremely happy to announce these three great names to get the ball rolling, but we’re very confident it is just a taste of things to come in terms of building the field,” Herden said.

“In days and weeks to come, we can expect a raft of the world’s best players to join us in Adelaide.”

The 2016 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open will be held from February 18-21 on The Grange Golf Club’s West Course.

Tickets on sale now at


The 2016 ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open, is the flagship tournament on the ALPG Tour and is jointly sanctioned by the LPGA Tour and Ladies European Tour.

The prizemoney is $US1.3million (approx. $AUD1.8million), making it the largest prize purse in Australian golf this summer.


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Legends look to master the Sunshine Coast

The best PGA Legends Professionals will converge on the Sunshine Coast this week to compete on three of the most recognised golf courses the area has on offer to wrap up the 2015 E-Z-GO PGA Legends Tour season.

Players will kick off the week of events at Noosa Golf Club tomorrow, then to Peregian Springs and Twin Waters Golf Club's in the days following.

The three individual pro-ams totalling $60,000 in prizemoney will culminate with the inaugural Sunshine Coast Masters tournament on Friday where the leading 29 Professionals from the three previous tournaments will share in a bonus $20,000 to also be played at Twin Waters.

The driving force behind the week and the unique format is Australian golfing legend Ian Baker-Finch who dedicates much of his time when back in Australia to not only his commentary commitments, but also supporting the E-Z-GO PGA Legends Tour.

Baker-Finch will be competing in each event during the week and no doubt will want to be at the top of the leaderboard by week's end.

"I enjoy coming home and playing in Australia and I'm sure we will see some of the best that our Legend Professionals can offer this week," said Baker-Finch.

"The Sunshine Coast is a fantastic destination to finish the season for the players and we are looking forward to having so many of our greatest names supporting the week."

Also making an appearance this week is Peter Senior who is in great form after his win at the Australian Masters but also coming off a narrow loss on the weekend at the Australian Legends Tour Championship held at Byron Bay. 

Senior lost to fellow Queenslander Tod Power in a playoff so will be looking for redemption in the coming days.

Other players to compliment the strong field of Professionals include Rodger Davis, Mike Harwood, David Merriman and Terry Price, not to mention the next generation of Legends looking to make a mark on the tour.

Credit: Golf Australia

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Wins will come for young ace Smith
BRENDALE golfer Cameron Smith says lessons learnt during the final round of the Australian PGA Championship will serve him well when he next gets a shot at victory.

Smith took the outright lead during the final round at Royal Pines on Sunday, after a birdie on the 12th hole, but bogeyed the 13th, 16th and 17th to finish fifth.

The 22-year-old said it was another valuable experience in what had been a career-building year.

“It’s always good to be in contention on a Sunday, that’s for sure. In the last nine holes, a few things didn’t go my way, but that’s golf,” Smith said.

“I’ve always been good at controlling my ball flight, so when it’s windy ... I tend to go quite well.”

The Australian summer of golf Cameron Smith “couldn’t speak highly enough” of Jordan Spieth, but is working on his game to ensure he can match it with the world No.1 when they inevitably cross paths. Both are 22 years old, meaning Smith can expect to see Spieth towards the top of the leaderboard for many years to come. But there’s no shortage of belief from the Brendale golfer. “That’s the goal,” Smith said. “He’s unbelievable. But definitely all the young guys playing professionally believe they can do it.” was a welcome excuse to return home for an extended period after spending most of the year abroad.

After going into the year with invitations to seven tournaments in the US, Smith said he was “pretty happy” with his efforts.

“We just thought we’d have a crack and I wasn’t really expecting too much going into it, and I got a tour card out of it,” he said.

But Smith still can’t comprehend his fourth-place finish at the US Open. 
“It was just a good week and my game was on,” he said.

Smith said he didn’t feel under pressure to deliver a win. 
“Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to win, but I just need to keep doing the right things ... and the time will come,” he said.

Smith returns to the US in January for the start of the 2016 tour.

Story & Photo: Quest News 
Jacob Grams

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Felton launches career with NSW PGA victory

West Australian Jarryd Felton has won his first Professional title in just his fifth start at a Pro.

Firing a final round 4-under 68, Felton secured a two shot win at the NSW PGA Championship with a tournament total 13-under 275.

It's an impressive victory for the 20-year-old who had to pre-qualify for the tournament but has now set up his career at home with exemption onto the PGA Tour of Australasia for the next two years.

Feeling comfortable throughout the round, Felton was unaware of his position at the top of the leaderboard until the 18
th green by which time, thanks to a birdie on the 17th, he had a two shot lead.

Finishing in share of runner-up on 11-under 277 are PGA TOUR player Rhein Gibson, PGA Tour of Australasia player of the Year Matthew Millar, James Nitties, Anthony Summers and Geoff Drakeford.

A shot further back finishing outright 7
th was Max McCardle, while rounding out the top-10 on 8-under the card were David McKenzie, Peter Cooke and Christopher Wood.

For all final scores please visit

As the final event on the 2015 PGA Tour of Australasia schedule, there was a lot on the line with some players in the field looking to maintain their cards for 2016. For a full summary of what players needed to do please visit

For the final PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit please visit

Key Quotes
Jarryd Felton, 65, 74, 68, 68, 13-under 275, champion

"I'm over the moon, walking down the last I didn't really know what the situation was but I saw the leaderboard and it was quite overwhelming."

"I was really impressed with myself; I stuck to what was best for me. I started with a birdie and normally I kind of get a little ahead of myself and think hear I go, I can win this tournament. But it was definitely too early to think that and I just kept going along making some birdies and some nice par saves. The birdie on 17 made me feel really good, then walking down 18 was great."

"The highlight was the 20 footer that I holed on 17 for birdie. I knew I had to coast it down to make par to keep in it, not realising what was going on, to hole it was a bonus."

"It takes a lot of pressure off, a trip to Q-School was on the cards obviously so it's taken that extra pressure off, I can plan out my year now so we will go from there."

Story: Golf Australia
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Gregory Foo and Rebecca Kay take out 2015 Port Phillip Amateur Titles

Gregory Foo from Singapore has won the 2015 Men’s Port Phillip Amateur while Coolangatta’s Rebecca Kay has taken out the Women’s Port Phillip Amateur following the final 36-holes played at the Kingston Heath Golf Club on Sunday 13 December.

A member of the Singaporean National Squad, Foo came home with a final round of 71 for a four round total of 286 to win the men’s title by a solitary stroke from Sandhurst’s Brett Coletta. Trailing overnight leader Coletta by a stroke after the opening 36-holes, Foo gained the ascendancy with a superb three-under par morning round of 69.

In a high quality battle during the afternoon, matching one-under par closing rounds saw 22-year-old Foo hold on to outlast the Australian National Squad member for his first major foreign title.

The Women’s title saw Australian Junior Squad member,
Kay play superb golf over the final day. After rounds of 79 and 77 at Commonwealth, the 16-year-old from Queensland followed a morning even-par round of 73 with a one-under 72 to finish on a four round total of 301.

Leading amateur at this year’s Australian Ladies Masters, Kay won the women’s title by two-strokes from Amanda Tan from Singapore who closed with a 75 for a 72-hole total of 303. Kingston Heath’s Dayle Marshall finished in third position on 306 after closing with an even-par 73.

After the cool and windy conditions over the opening two rounds of the Championship, a perfect Melbourne summer’s day greeted players for the final 36-holes at Kingston Heath, creating good scoring opportunities for the 59 men and 23 women who qualified from the opening two rounds played at Commonwealth on Friday and Saturday.

While a moderate southerly breeze came up during the afternoon, clear skies and warm temperatures made for ideal playing conditions.

Following the appreciated support of the Commonwealth and Kingston Heath Golf Clubs, the qualifying rounds of the Victorian Amateur have been held in conjunction with the Port Phillip Amateur from 2008 for the men and from 2012 for the women.

The leading 32 men with 72-hole scores of 303 or better and the leading 16 women with 72-hole scores of 319 or better following the completion of the Port Phillip Amateur now progress to the match play rounds of the Victorian Amateur Championship which will also be played at Kingston Heath and Commonwealth.

A play-off was needed to decide the final three qualifying positions for the men between four players tied on 303. Tim Hardham, Mark Boulton and Tony Lee were the successful player following a sudden-death play-off with Markopolo Fullep. The match play rounds will begin at the Commonwealth Golf Club from 7.30am on Monday 14 December culminating in the 36-hole Men’s and Women’s finals on Wednesday 16 December.

The Men’s Port Phillip Amateur commenced in 1976 and has been played annually over that time at Kingston Heath and Commonwealth within Melbourne’s Sand Belt. The 72-hole Championship boasts former winners such as Mike Clayton (1977 & 1980), Brad Hughes (1987 & 1988), Craig Spence (1994), Stephen Allan (1995) and Scott Gardiner (1999).

The Women’s Port Phillip Amateur commenced in 2012 with Metropolitan’s Su-Hyun Oh winning in both 2012 and 2013 with talented youngster Shelly Shin from NSW victorious in 2014.

Final results for the 2015 Port Phillip Open Amateur can be found via the following links:

2015 Men's Port Phillip Amateur - Final Results

2015 Women's Port Phillip Amateur - Final Results

Photo: Kingston Heath Captain Peter Clark (left) and Commonwealth Captain Geoff Hardy (right) with 2015 Port Phillip Amateur Champions - Rebecca Kay (Coolangatta) and Gregory Foo (Singapore)

Story: Golf Victoria
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Dobbelaar and Choi cap stellar year with Qld Boys and Girls Amateur Titles

Louis Dobbelaar (Brookwater) and Robyn Choi (Emerald Lakes) have claimed victory in their respective Qld Junior amateur championships after overcoming their rivals during three intense and taxing days at Indooroopilly Golf Club.


Trailing overnight leader and houseguest, Matias Sanchez (Royal Melbourne) by 7 shots heading into the 36 hole marathon third day, Dobbelaar rocketed up the leaderboard with an, at then, tournament low round of 68 (-4). Not to be outdone, Charles Pilon (Hills International), playing in the final group with Sanchez and fellow state-team member Steven Cox (North Lakes), took the 54-hole lead with a fine 69.


As Sanchez and Cox fell away over the final 18 holes, it quickly emerged that it was a 2 horse race between Dobbelaar and Pilon.  News spread quickly across the course that Dobbelaar, playing 3 groups ahead of Pilon, had played his penultimate 9-holes in 2-under to really apply the pressure. 

Both players birdied the drivable par-4 10th and split birdies over the 11th and 12th. With 5-holes to play, Pilon was confident he could close it out standing on the par-3 14th, having previously aced it during the second round.  A regulation par was enough to maintain his lead however ultimately it was a par-3 which would prove his downfall, as a bogey on the 16th was bettered by a birdie from Dobbelaar. 


The short par-5 18th would prove decisive. Dobbelaar had birdied the hole the previous three rounds and when he rolled in his putt for 4, he had made his 13th and arguably most important birdie of the final day to sign for 67 and a 72-hole score of 283 (-5).  In contrast, Pilon had only managed one birdie on the 18th during the tournament and when he found the light rough off the tee, he knew he needed something special to snatch the title. Pilon’s approach flew long and faced with a difficult pitch shot down the green, he managed to leave an extremely testing 25-footer to force a playoff.  As Pilon’s valiant attempt slid narrowly by, the result was confirmed with Dobbelaar becoming one of the tournament’s youngest champions at age 14.


Robyn Choi has been the commanding force in Queensland Women’s golf this year, having already claimed victories in the Katherine Kirk Classic and Qld Women’s Amateur, and it was business as usual as she opened with a 3-under round of 71 to share the first round lead with Kirsty Hodgkins (Redcliffe).


Toowoomba’s Darcy Habgood definitely shook the championship up with a tournament low 70 (-4) second round to enter the final day with a 2-shot lead over Choi.  It promised to be an enthralling 36-hole shoot out with Hodgkins and Hazel Martin (Virginia) hovering.


A controlled opening 9-holes on day three had Habgood and Choi locked in a what appeared to be a head to head battle, however a haul of six birdies from Stacey White in the third round, put her squarely in contention heading into afternoon.  Habgood, unable to take advantage of Choi’s troubles on 10,11 and 12, stumbled late on the back nine of the morning round and when the scores were tallied through 54 holes, it was Choi with a slender one shot advantage.


Summoning the composure that has been her hallmark all 2015, Choi put space between herself and the chasing pack with a blistering 3-under front 9. Try as they might, Habgood, Martin and White were unable to apply the necessary pressure and when Choi made her 4th birdie on the par-5 12th, all that remained was the coronation walk down the 18th in celebration of one of the more dominant years witnessed in Queensland women’s golf history.


Habgood’s closing round of 74 was enough to clinch second and at only 15 years of age, she is definitely a player to watch in the years to come.


Indooroopilly is to be applauded for the magnificent condition the East Course was presented in and the hospitality shown to all participants.


The Boys and Girls Amateur now ventures to a new club and a new time with the 2016 edition (June 28 to July 1) to be the first of many championships held at Bargara Golf Club.

See photos from the final round on the Golf Queensland Facebook Page

By Matt Field

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Course redesign to provide a new era for RACV Ladies Masters

Tournament Chairman Bob Tuohy announced today the 27th RACV Ladies Masters will be hosted by RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast from 25-28 February 2016.

In announcing the dates for the event, Mr Tuohy paid tribute to RACV, the title sponsor and event host; Tourism and Events Queensland and the City of Gold Coast, who have supported the event since inception in 1990.

“The RACV Ladies Masters has a proud history spanning three decades at Royal Pines on the Gold Coast and during this period it has seen many of the world’s best female golfers and rising stars contest the coveted Ladies Masters title.”

“The players in next year’s Ladies Masters will for the first time experience the highly acclaimed, redeveloped 18-hole course layout at RACV Royal Pines establishing a new era for the event.”

The Graham Marsh designed course which was unveiled earlier this month for the Men’s Australian PGA Championship, will provide a totally new playing experience for the field in the Ladies European Tour (LET) and Australian Ladies Professional Golf (ALPG) co-sanctioned RACV Ladies Masters.

This event is supported by the Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland and promoted as part of the
It’s Live! in Queensland calendar of events.

The event will again be broadcast live in Australia by ABC TV Sport and will be broadcast internationally providing valuable destination branding for the Gold Coast and generating millions of dollars in economic benefit to the region.

RACV Executive General Manager, Sue Blake said that RACV was delighted to be continuing its major sponsorship and the hosting of this prestigious ladies golf event at RACV Royal Pines Resort.

“The RACV Ladies Masters has proven to be a platform for many of the world’s best and emerging players to showcase their exceptional talent and this event provides our members, guests and visitors to the Gold Coast with a fantastic opportunity to enjoy world-class golf right on their doorstep.”

Mayor Tate of the Gold Coast City Council says “We’re proud to support this event since it first began in 1990, because it’s events like these that motivate our young people to participate in sport,” he said.

“As part of our Sport Plan, we’re actively working towards growing participation in sport to make the Gold Coast Australia’s most active city.”

“I hope we see plenty of families coming to watch the golf and that the next generation of young female golfers will be inspired by the field of talented players.” 

Karen Lunn (CEO) ALPG said “On behalf of the ALPG and our co-sanctioned partners at the Ladies European Tour I would like to pay particular thanks to RACV for their ongoing support as the title sponsor of the RACV Ladies Masters, and also to Tourism and Events Queensland and the Gold Coast City Council for their support of the tournament.”

“We are delighted to be once again returning to the Home and Championship Golf in Australia for the 2016 RACV Ladies Masters.”

“I am sure the players will enjoy the newly designed 18 holes at RACV Royal Pines Resort for the first time in 2016.”

“The ALPG look forward to again welcoming players from more than 27 countries to the Gold Coast which is one of the players favourite destinations.”

“We look forward to making the 2016 RACV Ladies Masters the best ever!”

One hundred and forty four players from more than 27 countries including amateur invitations and Defending Champion, Australia’s Su Oh will contest the 27
th RACV Ladies Masters.

Further player announcements will follow in early January.
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Three added to Golf Australia’s coaching panel

Three of Australia’s top female coaches have been added to Golf Australia’s national coaching panel.

High performance director Brad James said the addition of the vastly experience trio of Rachel Hetherington, Virginia Irwin and Shani Waugh was an invaluable asset.

“All three coaches have incredible – and varied – backgrounds in golf, but all have amazing skill sets that will really be advantageous to our up-and-coming athletes,” James said.

“More than that, all three are incredibly passionate about the sport and we are sure that will benefit all who share their experience and knowledge.”

The five existing national coaches -- Ritchie Smith (WA), Dean Kinney (NSW), Marty Joyce (Vic), Tony Meyer (Qld) and Gareth Jones (SA) – remain, and the women join Ryan Lumsden, Stuart Leong and Paul Skinner as members of the extended panel.

Hetherington had a legendary career, winning eight of her 11 professional titles on the LPGA Tour, including the Evian Masters, before turning her hand to coaching.

Waugh, the current president of the ALPG Tour, toured for 16 years and had several victories at home and internationally, including the 2005 Thai Ladies Open, before also turning her hand to coaching almost a decade ago and guiding Australia to gold and bronze medals in the World Amateur Teams Championship.

Irwin has spent her career as a coach and mentor and is one of Australia’s most qualified coaches. She coached the national team at the Queen Sirikit Cup this year and to victor at the Astor Trophy as well as leading several Queensland teams in interstate competition.

The group will share coaching responsibilities at events, attend camps and other national coaching events.

Story Credit: Golf Australia

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Hart on the money at Wynnum

Tim Hart has etched his name into the history books alongside the likes of Peter Senior, Jeff Senior and Vaughan Somers, becoming only the sixth player in the 37 year history to win the Bartons/BMD Wynnum Pro-Am for a second time.

Renowned for attracting a super star field, Wynnum Golf Club was graced with the presence of some of Australia's sporting superstars including former Australian Cricket Captain Alan Border, Queensland State of Origin great Wally Lewis and premiership winning coach of the North Queensland Cowboys Paul Green, as well as PGA TOUR players Rod Pampling, Rhein Gibson and Cameron Smith.

However it was Tim Hart who would shine with his name topping the leaderboard at the end of the day.

Hart fired an impressive 9-under 61 which included six birdies and back-to-back eagles at the par-5 13th and par-4 14th holes.

There were plenty of impressive scores being made with Hart claiming victory by just one shot over Wynnum local Chris Wood, Daniel Fox and Adam Stephens, who only gained entry into the field following a late withdrawal yesterday afternoon.

The win is bitter sweet for Hart who missed out on competing at the Australian PGA Championship last week, losing in a playoff for the final position last Monday at the pre-qualifying also held at Wynnum Golf Club.

"I was really disappointed after missing out on the Australian PGA Championship last week, but to bounce back and put it behind me is very pleasing and possibly something I couldn't have achieved 12 months ago," said Hart.

The Wynnum win caps off a breakout season for Hart who is aiming to step it up again in 2016.

"This year has been one of my more consistent years, and I guess it's due to the hard work I have been putting in both on and off the golf course with my coach Richard Woodhouse," added Hart.

"I am really looking forward to the New South Wales PGA Championship later this week and hopefully I can replicate the golf that I am playing at the next level."

The Bartons/BMD Wynnum Pro-Am continues to hold the record for the largest one-day pro-am in Australia, with a prize purse of $60,000.

The honour board of winner's read like a who's who of Australian golf and includes household names such as Michael Harwood and Andre Stolz.

The 2015 Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series Sunshine Swing will draw to a close this week, with the final event of the season being played at Sanctuary Cove. Although Tim Hart has all but sealed victory in the MLC Advice Nundah Order of Merit, professionals will no doubt be looking for a timely cheque heading into the festive season.  

The Sunshine Swing forms part of the Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series which comprises of 200 events Australia wide.

Played across more than 170 golf courses around Australia the Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series plays an important part in the development of Australia's Professional Golfers whilst also growing the game at a grass roots level by engaging an estimated 48,000 amateur golfers each year.

For more information and results from the Bartons/BMD Wynnum Pro-Am, please click here.

Story Credit: PGA

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Holman wins Aus PGA & European Tour card
Victorian Nathan Holman has won the Australian PGA Championship in a dramatic finish at RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast.

The Woodlands Golf Club member was flying the flag for the Aussie contingent who headed into the final day as the highest placed Australian and well within reach of engraving his name on the Kirkwood Cup.

After bogeying his final two holes, Holman ended the day tied for the lead with South African Dylan Frittelli and American Harold Varner III on even par 288.

The trio entered a playoff with only one trip down the 18th required to determine the winner.

It was far from a textbook start to the final round for eventual champion Holman, after a double bogey on the first hole for the second consecutive day. He was quick to steady the ship and grinded away in tough scoring conditions picking up birdies on 9,12 and 15 to find himself leading by two.

Two missed greens on 17 and 18 proved costly as the 24-year-old failed to get up and down on both occasions bringing both Frittelli and Varner III back into the tournament.

However the 24-year-old held his nerve during the playoff to emerge victorious securing his first win as a Professional.

This was the seventh time that the Australian PGA Championship has been decided in a playoff.

The Australian PGA Championship is the first tournament on the European Tour schedule for 2016 and with his win, Holman will receive exemption on the European Tour for the remainder of 2016 season followed by 2017. He also receives a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour of Australasia and an invitation to the 2016 World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational.

The AU$315,000 prize cheque also sees Holman secure the PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit in which he will receive an invitation to The Open Championship 14-17 July at Royal Troon in Scotland.

Rounding out the Australian PGA Championship’s top-10 were, South African Zander Lombard who finished fourth on 1-over 289 taking out the Kel Nagle Plate for the best performing rookie while Queensland’s Cameron Smith secured fifth spot on 2-over 290.

In a tie for sixth Dimitrios Papadatos, Richard Green and Matthew Millar ended their week on 3-over 291. While Adam Stephens, Peter Lonard, Mathew Goggin, Jordan Zunic, Anthony Brown, Nino Bertasio, Matthew Griffin, Rory Bourke and David Lingmerth all ended their week on 4-over 292.

For all round 4 scores please click here.
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PresCare QSOOM Final
Now in its third year, the PresCare Queensland Senior Order of Merit continues to prove its popularity with golfers around the state.

This year the Series attracted 779 players who participated in 26 events. Of this, there were 294 women and 485 men who played in at least one event this year.

The average field size was 60 players with 70 per cent of the fields being 50 or more players.

The prize winners for the 2015 PresCare QSOOM were as follows:

Winner Men’s Scratch: Peter Hannah
Runner Men’s Scratch: Mario La Chiusa
Winner Women’s Scratch: Josie Ryan
Runner Up Women’s Scratch: Cheryl Sternberg
Winner Men’s Nett: Ian Broom
Runner Men’s Nett: Tim Deakin
Winner Women’s Nett: Wendy O’Connell
Runner Up Women’s Nett: Gwen Clutterbuck
Winner Men’s Super Senior: Trevor Box
Runner Men’s Super Senior: Rodney McNeven
Winner Women’s Super Senior: Helen Gray
Runner Up Women’s Super Senior: Adrienne Naismith

The next season for the PresCare QSOOM season has changed so that it finishes with 2016 Queensland Senior Amateur Championships for men and women. The 2015-16 year is already underway with the North Lakes event being the ninth event for the new season. To find more events click here.

PresCare will continue supporting the Series in 2016 and have also extended their sponsorship to include the Queensland Senior Amateur Championship.
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Day honoured with Greg Norman Medal
Jason Day has received Australian golf’s most coveted award taking out the inaugural Greg Norman Medal tonight on the Gold Coast.

Receiving the award as Australia’s best preforming Tour Professional on the international stage, it’s been a year of significant success for the Queenslander who was a standout choice among the judging panel.

This is the second national award for Day, who was bestowed with the 2015 Don Award from the Australian Sports Hall of Fame in October.

"On behalf of the Australian golf industry I congratulate Jason on winning the inaugural Greg Norman Medal and convey how proud we are of all his achievements this year,” said Brian Thorburn, CEO of the PGA.

“Jason is a wonderful ambassador for golf and it’s fantastic to see him add the Greg Norman Medal to his list of successes."

Greg Norman, who was also in attendance, echoed Thorburn’s sentiments that there was no one more deserving of the accolade than Day.

“Jason has stood out head and shoulders above all other players, both male and female, and he’s a great representative of Australian golf.”

Day, who was unable to attend the evening, appeared via video link with his mother Dening Day accepting the award personally from Greg Norman on behalf of her son.

“It’s an honour and a privilege to win the Greg Norman Medal, it caps off an amazing year,” said Day.

“I’d like to thank the PGA of Australia for launching this medal with Greg Norman and their support over the past 10 years.”

It’s been an incredible year for Day, who opened his 2015 PGA TOUR campaign solidly with a victory at the Farmers Insurance Open before going on to secure a further four victories on the Tour this season.

However, by far the standout achievement of the year for Day was claiming his first Major title, the PGA Championship at Whistling Straits, before rising to Australia’s newest World Number 1.

Day also finished tied fourth at The Open, tied ninth at the US Open and finished third on the FedEx Cup rankings. He was also the highest ranked qualifier for the International Team at The Presidents Cup.

Day was one of eight nominees in the running to take out the award with Adam Scott, Matt Jones, Marc Leishman, Steven Bowditch, Karrie Webb, Minjee Lee and Rebecca Artis also up for golf’s most prestigious award.

The evening saw members of the professional golf circuit, corporate world and golf community gather to celebrate the achievements of both Tournament and Vocational PGA Professionals.

Complementing the pinnacle award was the 2015 PGA Tour of Australasia Player of the Year, awarded to Matthew Millar, and the 2015 ALPG Player of the Year, which was awarded to Su Oh.

Millar made a solid start to the season finishing runner-up at the Coca-Cola Queensland PGA Championship in February before winning his first PGA Tour of Australasia title at the Holden New Zealand PGA Championship in March.

Millar hasn’t missed a cut on the PGA Tour of Australasia this season and has secured nine top-10 finishes from 12 starts.

Oh, meanwhile had four top-10 finishes from six starts and secured her first Professional victory on the ALPG Tour at the RACV Ladies Masters in February, a co-sanctioned tournament with the Ladies European Tour

Five other national Vocational awards were also presented and included:

2015 National Trainee of the Year, Rick Coleman
2014 National Trainee of the Year, Mark Alison
2015 National Club Professional of the Year, Richard Caiolfa (Rich River Golf Club)
2015 National Club Professional of the Year, Ian Pritchard (Mt Osmond Golf Club)
2015 National Teaching Professional of the Year, Stuart Leong (Albert Park Driving Range)

The night also saw Jarrod Lyle honoured after receiving the PGA TOUR’s Courage Award after overcoming two battles with acute myeloid leukemia.

Lyle is in the second year of a Medical Extension granted to him due to his life-threatening illness.

The Greg Norman Medal dinner, which is proudly supported by the City of Gold Coast, tees off the PGA’s flagship tournament, the Australian PGA Championship, at RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast from 3-6 December.

Australia’s richest golf tournament in 2015, the Australian PGA Championship will be played for AU$1.75million and co-sanctioned by the PGA Tour of Australasia and European Tour.

Tickets for the tournament are now on sale at with children 16 years and under admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Discounts are also available for members of RACV and affiliated motoring clubs as well as for Gold Coast residents.

The Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland as well as the City of Gold Coast and Gold Coast Tourism proudly supports the Championship
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MEDIA RELEASE: Queensland Golf Shines at Queensland Sport Awards

The Queensland golf industry enjoyed an exceptional night at the Queensland Sport Awards, held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre last night.

Golf was successful in two categories, with Max Whitten taking home the Sport Volunteer of the Year Award while Jason Day won the coveted Sport Star of the Year Award.

Golf Queensland Chair Peter Castrisos said it was very pleasing for the Queensland golf industry to be recognised in such a way.

"We are thrilled that golf has featured so heavily in the Queensland Sport Awards this year. Having three finalists was a remarkable accomplishment for Golf Queensland and we are very pleased that Max and Jason were able to win in their respective categories," Mr Castrisos said.

"All of our finalists were fantastic contenders in their categories and we are very proud of their achievements."

Day’s mother, Dening, gratefully and gracefully accepted the award on her son’s behalf.

“We are ecstatic for Jason,’’ she said. “The year has been so wonderful and it has now ended on an even higher note.

“He has worked so hard for what he has achieved and so many people in Queensland have known him since his young days in amateur golf.

Golf Finalists:
Jason Day Sport Star of the Year
Max Whitten Sport Volunteer of the Year
Rebecca Kay Junior Sport Star of the Year

Winner's background:
Max Whitten has been the driving force behind the establishment of the Maleny Golf Club, Sunshine Coast, commencing play late June which has seen him fittingly earn the award for Volunteer of the Year. The course was 15 years in development and it was only Max’s efforts in the early years and during construction that made the course and club possible.

Max's leadership, commitment, drive and enterprise has facilitated the construction of the course to meet an unmet demand for golf in the area.

Jason Day has had a stellar year, becoming the youngest and only the third Australian to hold the World Number 1 ranking.

In winning his very first major in August, Jason made history for the most shots under par in a major (20-under) with his record-breaking win at the BMW Championship catapulting him to the World Number 1 title.

In terms of his year so far, Day has lived up to his early promise he made as a junior Beaudesert Golf Club member; exclaiming “I want to take down Tiger.” Nine years later, Day’s resume for 2015 is impressive, but it’s more representative of a long, steady build-up where he has built his game to be unmatchable when it’s on song.

His five PGA tour wins, including his first major at the PGA Championship, and nine top-10 finishes was gold of the most consistent calibre.

Congratulations to all the winners and finalists.

Photo: Max Whitten, Dening Day and Peter Castrisos (Chair)

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Matt Jones wins the Emirates Australian Open
Matt Jones is the 2015 Emirates Australian Open champion, producing his biggest tournament triumph on home soil at the club where he played pennant golf as a teenager, The Australian.

Sydney's Jones, 35, an under-rated player on the United States PGA Tour for a decade, won by a shot from world No.1 Jordan Spieth and world No.12 Adam Scott when he made par up the 18th, holing a putt from just more than a metre to get his hands on the prized Stonehaven Cup.

Jones limped to a final-round 73, two-over par, after starting the final day with a three-shot lead. But it was enough to post an eight-under-par total and win the $225,000 first prize.

Spieth missed a putt for eagle at the final hole that would have forced a playoff, leaving Jones to complete his par and mimic his idol, Greg Norman, in winning his national Open.

"It's amazing,'' Jones said.

"It's something I would have thought about from when I was six when I first met him. I tried not to think about it this week because I knew, as you saw today, anything can happen on a golf course. You can be one swing away from doing what I did and having no chance to win.

"To have my name on this trophy with like (Jack) Nicklaus, (Jack) Newton, Norman, all those guys, it’s a dream come true for me and it's something that I can’t have taken away from me.''

Jones grew up in Oyster Bay in Sydney's southern suburbs and graduated from The Australian Golf Club's pennant team, leaving Australia more than a decade ago to take up a golf scholarship in the US, then turning professional. His win at Houston on the PGA Tour last year was his first and the only professional victory before today.

It was a remarkable final day, not least for the stunning, 10-under par 61 by Rod Pampling that smashed Spieth's course record from last year and at one point, threatened to win the tournament for the Queenslander.

Scott closed with a 65 that gave him a chance, and until Jones' final putt, he had a chance of making a playoff.

Jones' final putt was tricky. It lipped in, from the left. "It's not the most comfortable putt,'' he said later. "I would've much preferred to leave it to a tap-in or gimme distance, but I was expecting Jordan to make that. I've played enough rounds of golf with him where he makes those putts. He didn't putt well today. I thought he was due to make one and he didn't. I was just lucky it caught the left lip and went in. I thought I'd missed it left but one of those things ... it just went in and I was very, very happy.''

For final scores, go to

The tournament’s official website,, is home to a selection of great stories and videos from the dramatic final round.
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Emirates Australian Open: Round 3 summary

Matt Jones continues to lead the Emirates Australian Open following the third round played today at The Australian Golf Club in Sydney.

Jones held his nerve and stuck to his game plan today closing with back-to-back birdies to fire 3-under 68 in the third round.

Leading the Emirates Australian Open by three shots, Jones is looking to control his aggression in the final round to minimise his mistakes and ensure he sets himself up with an opportunity to claim the Stonehaven Cup.

World Number 1 Jordan Spieth fired 4-under 67 today to ensure he sets up a final round pairing with Jones.

While some players might be nervous at the prospect of playing alongside the World Number 1, Jones is looking forward to tomorrow when he gets to compete against his mate.

Spieth's round was highlighted by an eagle on the par-4 17th which earned a huge cheer from the Sydney crowd.

Sitting outright third on the leaderboard on 5-under the card is Rhein Gibson who just this year earned his ticket to the PGA TOUR.

A shot further back is first round leader Lincoln Tighe and Aron Price who each had 1-under 70 at The Australian today.

Geoff Ogilvy remains at 3-under the card after his second even par round in a row.

Adam Scott recorded his best round of the Emirates Australian Open today firing 3-under 68 to move into the top-10. Joining him on 1-under the card after three rounds are Brett Rumford, Todd Sinnott and Ryder Cup Captain Darren Clarke.

The final round of the Emirates Australian Open will tee off tomorrow at 7.14am with the final pair of Matt Jones and Jordan Spieth on course at 12.40pm.

For all round 2 scores please visit

For all round 4 tee times please visit

Key Quotes:

Matt Jones, 67, 68, 68, 10-under, 1st

"One more day to go, I get to play with him; be no better person to beat on the final day and have him in the group with me.  So yeah, to go up against the number 1 in the world will be a lot of fun."

"I'm just happy to be in the final group leading the golf tournament with a chance to win. Of course we play golf for a living and to have the chance to win is what you want, and to go up against the number 1 in the world is even better."

Jordan Spieth, 71, 68, 67, 7-under, 2nd

"When I finished the round I thought I'd either be tied or one back and it looks like I may be two or three, either way, it's a lot better than I was to four holes today.  Great fight back, one of the best fought rounds I've had that I can remember."

"He's a guy (Matt Jones) who can, with confidence, really roll his putter well.  He's a guy who isn't fazed by the wind.  He hits a nice little punch ball draw flight and he's not letting up." 

Rhein Gibson, 72, 68, 67, 5-under, 3rd

"I knew it was going to be a little tough today with the wind and the bigger crowds but I had a good front-9 which kind of settled me down a bit and happy to shoot 3-under."

"This is one of my top three courses in Australia.  I love coming here.  The greens are absolutely perfect.  You get some balls tracking on line, they're going to go in."

Adam Scott, 71, 73, 68, 1-under, T7

"Just going out there, teeing off under par, it's always a good feeling but the difference between 5 or 6, or 7 and 8 shots is so huge."

"You never know how they're going to finish up but at least I clawed into red figures and start tomorrow hopeful of something special."

For more player quotes please visit the PGA Media Centre. 

For audio interviews please visit the PGA Media Centre.

Check out our photos from Round 2 of the Australian Open on the Golf Queensland Facebook Page

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The PGA & China Golf launch new international tournament

The PGA of Australia and the the China Golf Association will stage a new International tournament which will see a team of PGA Professionals and amateur golfers battle it out for the title of International Team Challenge Champions.
Team China will go head-to-head with Team Australia on the Sanctuary Cove Palms Course on the Gold Coast from 3-5 December 2015 in the first stage of the home and away style tournament.
Following stage one, Team Australia will travel to China in mid 2016 to contest the international leg of the tournament.
“It’s wonderful to continue our relationship with the China Golf Association, and I thank them for their support in assisting us develop this new event, which has been modeled on the Ryder Cup format,” said Brian Thorburn, CEO of the PGA.
“It will give our PGA Professionals and top amateurs the opportunity to participate and experience the excitement of competing overseas, while also assisting to promote the game of golf in China and Australia.”
Six PGA Professionals, who qualified via the PGA Professionals (Vocational Members) Championship, will join six amateurs, selected in consultation with each State Amateur Body and Golf Australia and based on their individual results this year, to form Team Australia.
Captaining the squad will be PGA Professionals and General Manager Darren Richards from Ipswich Golf Club who will be the playing captain in Australia and the non-playing captain in China.
Professionals in the field
Darren Richards (c)     QLD     Ipswich Golf Club
Chris Duke                   SA       House of Golf
Robert Kennedy          NSW    Moss Vale Golf Club
Glen Dick                     NSW   Director of Golf at Kareela Golf Club
Peter Harrington         QLD     Palm Meadows Driving Range
Tod Power                   QLD    Tallai Golf Club
Amateurs in the field
Greg Longmore           TAS     Launceston Golf Club
David Micheluzzi          VIC     Cranbourne Golf Club
Shae Wools-Cobb       QLD    Maroochy River Golf Club
Travis Smyth               NSW   St. Michael’s Golf Club
Jack Williams               SA      The Grange Golf Club
Cameron Jones           WA     Royal Fremantle Golf Club
Each team will comprise of 12 players and the challenge will be run in a three round matchplay format:
Round 1:          Two person ambrose
Round 2:          4 Ball Best Ball
Round 3:          Singles
The first stage of the International Challenge will be contested at Sanctuary Cove Palms Course on the Gold Coast from 3-5 December 2015, while the International leg will be held in China in mid 2016. A venue in China is yet to be confirmed.

- ENDS -

Story: PGA of Australia

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Senior wins Australian Masters at 56

If it’s meant to be the age of the next wave, somebody forgot to send Peter Senior the script.

Senior, 56, won his third Australian Masters at Huntingdale today, a mere 24 years after his first and 36 years after his first professional win in 1979.

Almost unbelievably, it completed a career triple crown AFTER age 50 having won the 2010 Australian PGA and 2012 Emirates Australian Open.

The Queenslander forged into contention with a 68 in gruelling conditions on Saturday, then held his nerve in a tense finish to replicate that figure for a two-stroke win at eight under par.

Boom American amateur Bryson DeChambeau, US PGA Tour star John Senden and unheralded Sydneysider Andrew Evans finished tied second at six under, while Adam Scott regained ground lost on Saturday to finish fifth at five under.

But the moment belonged to Senior, who made a sensational sand save from a greenside trap on the 18
th hole, presumably thinking he needed to do so before Evans made a pair of closing bogeys having briefly shared the lead.

“You could easily leave it short or you could go too far and go off the front of the green, so yeah, I was pretty happy with that,” Senior beamed.

“I had a little bit of a downhill lie, which actually helped me because all we had to do was bump it out and let it run up the hill.

“Once it got to the top of the hill, I thought it would feed all the way down.  I was surprised it stopped as short as it did.

“But the putt was probably the best I hit all day.”

Senior, clearly emotional and genuinely shocked to have won, said he just “didn’t expect to win these events any more”.

“But once I birdied the 10th hole today, I figured I had a really good chance.  I played pretty solid.  I hit a couple bad shots towards the end there, but I'm just over the moon.”

“To win this tournament, the Aussie Open a few years ago and the PGA a couple of years before that, all of them over 50 years of age, I think that's a big thing for me.”

Senior was clearly taken by the support of a large and vocal crowd at Huntingdale who clearly were honouring not only his three-under charge today, but also the sustained brilliance over four decades.

“Nearly every hole on the back nine everyone was cheering me, even my sh--ty shots,” he joked.

“It was just great.  I have not had that sort of following for a very, very long time.  It sort of encouraged me.  When I looked up on, I think it was 14, and saw that I was a couple in front, gave me a bit of a boost.

“It's just amazing.  I'm still blown over winning this tournament. But golf's a funny game.  That's what we play it for, and I'm really happy to be the winner.”

Senior said he wasn’t sure whether pulling on his third gold jacket or the love from the crowd meant more.

“I think a bit of both.  I had a lot of friends out there today following me.  They were crying when I finished.  I'm really happy that I've got such a great family and the friends that I have.

“I think I've been around that long that everybody knows me, and a lot of the people here, I'm more the elderly type that I'm sort of singing around the last nine holes.  I'm just real happy to be part of Australian golf.”

Tournament favourite Adam Scott said it was remarkable that the veteran had saluted, but that “it shouldn't be a surprise” given his stunning career with 33 professional victories around the world.

“Pete, obviously he's based his career around being very accurate and precise.  He's a hell of a competitor,” Scott said.

And that fact should never be doubted by anyone who looks through the history of Australian golf.

Photo: Peter Senior with the Waterford Wedgewood Australian Masters Globe trophy

Story Credit: Golf Australia

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Cameron John wins Argentine Amateur

The semi final between Anthony Quayle and Cameron John was always going to be a close affair. 

On the front 9 the pair put on an impressive ball striking and putting display trading birdies back and forth, at the turn Anthony held a 1up advantage.

Cameron bounced back with wins on the 10th and 11th only for Anthony to take the 12th to move the match back to all square.

Anthony made the only mistake of the day on 16 three putting allowing Cameron to close out the match on 17.

This was definitely the match of the week with the two Australians leaving everything on the table. 

Cameron moved into the final this afternoon against Brazilian Andre Tourinho.

After spending a lot of mental energy in the mornings match Cameron found himself three down through the first four holes.

In true fashion Cameron continued his gritty attitude he has displayed all week clawing the lead back and by the turn had the match back to all square.

The momentum continued in Cameron's favour eventually closing the match out on the 17th to win 2/1.

Congratulations Cameron John on winning the 120th Argentine Amateur Championship! 

This tops off a great couple of weeks in Argentina with two guys who represented both themselves and Australia very well.

Story Credit: Golf Australia

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Australians into last 16 in Argentinia

Australia’s representatives in the Argentinian Amateur Championship have charged into the final 16.

Both Victorian Cameron John and Queenslander Anthony Quayle recorded 3&2 victories in the first round of the matchplay phase today in a rainswept Buenos Aires.

Earlier, John finished the strokeplay phase seeded second after finishing at four under after bad weather forced its reduction from 36 to 27 holes.

Quayle also impressed, finishing one under and T11 in the strokeplay.

The Australian team, which led until being overhauled by Canada late in last week’s Tailhade Cup, is handling the constant weather delays well, according to Golf Queensland coach Richard Woodhouse who is with the players in Argentina.

Photo: Anthony Quayle in Argentina

Story: Golf Australia

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Children with disabilities take the challenge
Children with disabilities from Brisbane West and Ipswich will take the challenge on Thursday 19th November at Corinda Pitch ‘n Putt, competing for the First Swing Inclusive Golf Challenge title.

Students from Western Suburbs, Goodna, Ipswich West, Claremont and Ipswich Special School will take part in the team-based challenge.

The students competing have been involved in the First Swing PE Golf Program at their schools for the past 2 terms all thanks to funding from the Federal Government initiative “Sporting Schools”.

First Swing gets kids of all ages and abilities learning the basics of golf, using modified equipment in a fun, active and inclusive way at their schools.

The nine-hole competition gives students a chance to put what the have learnt into play on a real golf course.

Brisbane Boys’ College have shown enormous support to the event this year by kindly donating the course free of charge for the day, “BBC own the golf course and the adjoining driving range and didn’t hesitate in supporting First Swing and the work they do with special needs children.

Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale has again thrown his support behind the event by donating $300.00 to help students get to the event. “I’m really happy to support the golf challenge again, First Swing are doing a wonderful job in promoting inclusive activity in our community,” Mr. Pisasale said.

“Golf is such a fun game and anyone can play, seeing kids being active and healthy while enjoying themselves is something First Swing do very well”

First Swing Director and Australian PGA Professional, Jay Simpson and his team of PGA Professionals believe that golf should be accessible to all people of all abilities.

“The Corinda course is the ideal venue for the special school students to experience a real golf atmosphere and the competition will be fierce on the day, all schools want to be the first to get their name on the perpetual trophy,” Mr. Simpson said.

“The First Swing team are dedicated in exposing the game of golf to everyone, we pride ourselves in giving mainstream and special needs schools an equal opportunity to learn how to play golf. It is a great way to get outside and exercise in a safe environment and most importantly, have fun.

“Ultimately we would like the children who have played with First Swing to continue their golfing journey and join a First Swing program or a local golf club.”

For more information about First Swing programs visit

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Rohan hopes luck continues

Brisbane Lions player Rohan Bewick is well aware that luck plays a major role in our everyday life, and he hopes his recent slice at The Brisbane Golf Club continues into the upcoming AFL season.

And by slice we mean his slice of luck, and not a sliced golf shot.

There was no slice whatsoever in his sweetly-timed seven iron shot that aced the very difficult 168 metre 13th hole at The Brisbane Golf Club in last Wednesday’s club competition. It was Bewick’s first hole in one and only the third at the 13th at Brisbane in the past five years.

Bewick, who plays wingman for the Lions and has 78 AFL appearnaces to his credit, plays off a handicap of 12. The 26-year-old was recruited to the Lions from Perth in 2011 and is the newphew of former Essendon great, Darren Bewick.

The Brisbane Golf Club is a haven for local sporting stars, particularly Lions players. Joining Bewick as members are Daniel Rich, Claye Beams, Sam Mayes, Michael Close, Josh Green, Dayne Zorko, Mitch Robinson, Ryan Bastinac and Lewis Taylor.

Queensland Bulls players Chris Lynn, Cameron Boyce, Usman Khawaja, Simon Milenko and

Jason Floros are members, as is Australian under 19 wicketkeeper Tom Healy, son of Ian. However, former Test fast bowler Ryan Harris remains the most celebrated member of the cricketing fraternity to regularly play the Yeerongpilly course.

Story Credit: Tony Durkin

Photo: A delighted Rohan Bewick after acing the 13th hole at The Brisbane Golf Club last Wednesday

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Australian Men's & Women's Mid Amateur crowns champions

An avalanche of birdies has propelled Victorian Mark Boulton to his first national crown – the Australian Mid Amateur Championship.

Boulton, an arborist, began the day joint second and three shots behind Queensland’s Ashley Grosvenor.

But the Victorian Mid Amateur champ, who plays off a handicap of plus two at Phillip Island, poured in six birdies en route to a one-under-par 71 at Arundel Hills Country Club in Queensland.

Grosvenor, meanwhile, carded a 76 to leave Boulton a two-stroke winner at +4 (220), with last year’s champion John McMiles, of New South Wales, third on 229.

Boulton began his round with a birdie on the third, but gave the shot back on the sixth hole. Birdies on the eighth and ninth holes gave him momentum, but he soon surrendered that and more with double-bogeys on the 10th and 12th.

But Grosvenor, who couldn’t muster a birdie throughout a tense final round, couldn’t take advantage and Boulton stormed to the crown with birdies on the 14th, 17th and 18th.

West Australian Melissa Luk maintained her overnight lead in the women’s championship with a final-round 80 to win by five shots.

Luk finished with a total of 235 (+19) including birdies on the second and sixth holes today.

Robyn Tait, visiting from Vietnam, finished runner-up, while Robyn Callaghan was third.

The state teams event was won by Queensland with a total of 709 with the team of Scott Draper, Ashley Grosvenor and Jess Jenkins.

Photos from Round 2: 
Golf Queensland Facebook Page
Story Credit: Golf Australia

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Adelaide to host ISPS Handa Women's Australian Open

ADELAIDE, November 16: The ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open will be played in Adelaide in 2016 and beyond.

Golf Australia chief executive officer Stephen Pitt, in conjunction with South Australian Minister for Recreation and Sport and Minister for Tourism, Leon Bignell, announced the historic move today at next year’s host venue, The Grange Golf Club.

Midori Miyazaki, executive director for international affairs for the tournament’s naming rights sponsor ISPS Handa, also confirmed a seventh successive year as the event’s major partner.

Mr Pitt said The Grange’s West Course would host the LPGA Tour co-sanctioned event from February 18-21 next year.

He also confirmed Royal Adelaide would host the 2017 championship to help celebrate the club’s 125th anniversary, with nearby Kooyonga the 2018 venue with an option for further tournaments in South Australia after that time.

“We are incredibly excited to bring such a high-profile international event as the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open to Adelaide,” Mr Pitt said.

“The South Australian Government, Golf South Australia and the clubs involved have all shown huge interest in bringing the event to Adelaide.

“And with the city not having hosted an elite level golf tournament for a few years, we are thrilled to engage with the entire community here in bringing the world’s best players back to the people of South Australia.”

Mr Bignell said the championship would put Adelaide firmly in the global spotlight.

Hosting the Open means we can showcase the state’s premier golf courses, as well as highlight our spectacular tourism assets,” he said.

This is huge news for golf fans and for our visitor economy. The 2016 event alone will deliver an estimated $3.7 million to our visitor economy and will have massive flow-on effect for hotels, taxis, hospitality and small businesses.

“We will also have international media exposure estimated to be worth more than $4.4 million.


Founder and chairman Dr Haruhisa Handa was delighted to confirm ISPS’s ongoing support for the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open.

“ISPS is a strong believer in the power of sport – it has a unique ability to create hope, inspire people and change society for the better,” Dr Handa said.

“After supporting many events and initiatives across Australia, I believe Adelaide is the perfect place for the Open and I am so excited about creating new relationships.”

The ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open will again attract the best field in Australia this summer by world rankings with its full status on the LPGA Tour and prizemoney of $US$1.3million.

LPGA commissioner Mike Whan said his players were thrilled to lock in Adelaide as their destination for the first tournament of its 2016 Asia-Pacific swing.

“It has been fantastic to watch this event grow in Australia since we joined in partnership with Golf Australia in 2012,” Mr Whan said.

“The LPGA Tour is now played in 15 countries around the world and features players from 30 countries in every point of the globe and Australia will continue to be a very important stop for us.
“The LPGA players love heading ‘Down Under’ and Adelaide’s wonderful courses will no doubt be great tests for the world’s best players.”

Australian Ladies Professional Golf executive director Karen Lunn said the domestic tour was delighted to have the Open back in Adelaide after a 22-year absence.

“It’s fantastic news that Dr Handa has shown continuing support of the event, along with the South Australian Government,” Miss Lunn said.

“It’s also great for women’s golf in South Australia – which has great past champs including Jane Crafter – to have the world’s best players in their back yard to help inspire the next generation of stars.”

The first formal player announcements are expected within weeks and tickets will go on sale through Ticketek in December.

The tournament is a tri-sanctioned event between the LPGA, LET and ALPG tours.

CAPTION: Stephen Pitt, Midori Miyazaki and Leon Bignell hold the ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open trophy, the Patricia Bridges Bowl, at The Grange Golf Club today.

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Gold Coast to host next generation of international golf stars
The rising stars of the world of golf will soon hit the Gold Coast when the Australian PGA Championship tees off at RACV Royal Pines Resort in December.

Teeing it up in Australia’s richest golf tournament, the Australian PGA Championship, Australia’s hottest golfing talent Cameron Smith, New Zealand’s emerging star Ryan Fox as well as young gun Americans Harold Varner III and Peter Uihlein will all be aiming for the biggest win of their careers.

Queenslander Cameron Smith has taken the golfing world by storm this year, finishing tied fourth in his first major appearance at the US Open which also secured him an invite to The Masters next year as well as his 2016 PGA TOUR card.

“I am really looking forward to competing in the Australian PGA Championship in front of my friends and family,” said Smith.

“I have spent a lot of the year competing overseas and enjoyed every minute of the amazing opportunities I have been afforded but there is nothing better than returning home and finishing my season on the Gold Coast.”

“If I could end the season by winning my first Professional tournament, it would be even better.”

Ryan Fox has also enjoyed a breakout year, forging a name for himself in Europe. The two time PGA Tour of Australasia winner capitalised on his opportunities competing on the European Challenge Tour, winning the Le Vaudreuill Golf Challenge as well as making the cut at The Open.

Fox came heartbreakingly close to securing a full card on the European Tour. He finished outside the top-15 players on the European Challenge Tour automatically granted cards by less than €2000.

However there are always other ways onto the main Tour and Fox is this week competing at the final stage of European Tour Qualifying School.

“The experience I have gained competing in Europe has been fantastic. While it would have been good to already have my card sown up for next year, I am looking forward to playing the Australian PGA Championship as a European Tour co-sanctioned tournament,” said Fox, who knows a win on the Gold Coast would cement his status on the lucrative tour until the end of 2017.

“It’s an incredible opportunity to play a European Tour co-sanctioned tournament in Australia. Hopefully by December I will already have my card via Q-School but if I don’t, winning the Aussie PGA is another way of securing it.”

American Peter Uihlein will headline the young guns of the European Tour heading to Australia.

The former number one amateur in the world, Uihlein has already won on the European Tour at the Madeira Islands Open in 2013 with his 2015 season highlighted by four top-10 finishes.

The Australian PGA Championship will be Uihlein’s second time competing in Australia after he finished in the top-10 at the 2014 Perth International.

“I loved playing in Perth last year so when I found out the European Tour was coming back to Australia I jumped at the chance to play.”

“I’m looking forward to playing on the newly re-designed course in such an iconic Australian location.”

Competing in Australia for the very first time is new PGA TOUR graduate Harold Varner III who in 2015 finished 25th on the Tour money list.

Renowned as a big hitter, Varner is sure to entertain fans at the Australian PGA Championship whilst also looking forward to experiencing golf down under.

“I have always heard good reports about the quality of Australian golf, there are a lot of Aussies competing on the Tour so I’m looking forward to seeing for myself everything they have been talking about,” said Varner.

The Australian PGA Championship will be played at RACV Royal Pines Resort from 3-6 December.

Australia’s richest golf tournament in 2015, the Australian PGA Championship is being played for AU$1.75million and co-sanctioned by the PGA Tour of Australasia and European Tour.

Tickets for the tournament are now on sale at with children 16 years and under admitted free when accompanied by a paying adult.

Discounts are also available for members of RACV and affiliated motoring clubs as well as for Gold Coast residents.

Visit the Australian PGA Championship website at for further details.

The Queensland Government through Tourism and Events Queensland as well as the City of Gold Coast and Gold Coast Tourism proudly supports the Championship.
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Day welcomes baby girl to family

Australia's top golfer Jason Day has become a father for the second time.

Day's American wife Ellie gave birth to a daughter, Lucy Adenil, this morning.

The pair have a son, Dash, who is three.

Ellie's pregnancy was the reason that Day, the world No. 2, opted to stay at his American home in Ohio this year rather than returning to play in the Emirates Australian Open at The Australian later this month.

Day has spoken recently about how parenthood has settled him and helped with his golf as he climbed to No. 1 in the world this year and won his first major.

"The stuff I used to get angry or frustrated with before, it has definitely mellowed me out,'' he said. 

"I think that is a good thing for me, especially on the golf course.''

Story Credit: Golf Australia

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Golf Australia 2016 national squad released
Golf Australia’s 2016 national squad has been released, with a handful of athletes on the verge of inclusion to the six-strong group.

Cameron Davis and Ryan Ruffels both reached high performance benchmarks in becoming rare inclusions at the Tier 1 level.

The Sydneysider and Melburnian join a short list of just five other players – Minjee Lee, Oliver Goss, Cam Smith, Su Oh and Lucas Herbert – to have achieved that level since the program began in 2010.

Hannah Green, Brett Coletta and Zach Murray have each attained Tier 2 status after quality results in the past year.

And Gold Coast youngster Becky Kay has been named a junior member of the national squad.

Golf Australia has also identified several other athletes who are close to inclusion.

GA high performance director Brad James said they will all be notified and monitored over the summer tournament season with possible additions to be made after these events.

“Our state high performance programs continue to do an exceptional job delivering their under-pinning programs to provide the right structures and resources necessary as the athletes move along the pathway towards the Golf Australia national squad level,” James said.

"The national coaches and all of the key stakeholders of Australian golf continue to provide a culture of integration that is vital to the success of a national system.

“And our national camps that we conduct both domestically and overseas continue to provide us with not only talent identification, but also developmental opportunities for all athletes involved.

For full list of GA national squad selection benchmarks, click
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Three advance to Europe Tour Q-School Final

A blistering final round has seen Antonio Murdaca through to the final stage of European Tour qualifying school with Todd Sinnott and David Bransdon also booking places at Catalunya Resort in Spain next week.

The trio were among six Australians to tee up at second stage of Qualifying, Geoff Drakeford, Callan O'Reilly and Kristopher Mueck failing to advance.

Murdaca began the final round at Panoramica resort in Spain outside the top-18 who would qualify but fired his best round of the week, a flawless 8-under-par 64, to climb to a share of 11th and advance to the final stage.

Bransdon finished 13th of 18 qualifiers at Las Colinas Country Club while Sinnott also finished T13 at Lumine Golf and Beach Club.

Four courses were used in various locations across Spain to host the second stage of qualifying with 267 golfers fighting for 72 places at the finale next week.

The final is a six round marathon where the top-25 and ties earn category 15 membership for the 2016 Tour.

In 2014 Andrew Dodt and Jason Scrivener both earned cards via the Q-School, Dodt going on to record a victory in Thailand and secure two more years of membership while Scrivener narrowly missed keeping his privileges via the top 115 on the Order of Merit.

Story Credit: PGA Australia

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Webb splits with long-time caddie
One of the longest caddie-player relationships in golf ended Sunday when Mike Paterson looped his last round for Karrie Webb at the Toto LPGA Classic in Japan after a 15-year partnership between the Scottish caddie and Australian Hall of Famer.

Paterson is heading for the more lucrative PGA Tour, picking up the bag of another Aussie, John Senden.

Webb got 18 of her 41 LPGA victories with Mikey on the bag and four of her seven majors.

Webb, who turns 41 in December, says she’ll decide on a caddie for next year after she decides how many events she is willing to play.

In 2015, she played 21 events, with just three top-10 finishes but only four missed cuts.

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Ryder Cup stars join Open field

Ryder Cup heroes Nicolas Colsaerts and Paul Lawrie are the latest big names to commit to the Emirates Australian Open.

The pair joins an expanding European contingent striving for the Stonehaven Cup at The Australian Golf Club in Sydney from November 26-29.

Colsaerts, revered as one of the game’s most powerful ball-strikers, will join former Open Championship winner Lawrie in the field, along with a string of Aussies with multiple European Tour wins under their belt including Brett Rumford, Marcus Fraser, Richard Green and Andrew Dodt.

Both Colsaerts and Lawrie were part of the successful European team that rocked the United States in the Ryder Cup’s “Miracle at Medinah” in 2012.

Championship director Trevor Herden said their addition continued to bolster a great international contingent that boasts defending champion and dual 2015 major winner Jordan Spieth, former world No.1 Lee Westwood and 2011 Open Championship winner Darren Clarke.

“We’re delighted to have Nicolas and Paul join the field – it really shows the genuine international interest in the Emirates Australian Open,” Herden said.

“They’re both world-class players who have performed at the highest level, and their interest in our national championship, along with the other overseas competitors, shows the global attention the tournament generates.”

The visit will mark just the second time Colsaerts has played professionally in Australia after representing Belgium in the World Cup at Royal Melbourne in 2013.

Scotsman Lawrie, famously the 1999 Open Championship playoff victor at Carnoustie, hasn’t played in Australia since the 2005 Heineken Classic, also at Royal Melbourne.

Collectively, they have 10 European Tour victories and four top-10 finishes in major championships.

The 2015 Emirates Australian Open, the 100th staging of the national championship, will be played at The Australian Golf Club from November 26-29.

The Emirates Australian Open is a flagship tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia. The winner will receive a minimum of 32 Official World Golf Ranking points.

The event will be telecast for all four days on Channel 7. 

Tickets are on sale now from Ticketek at or by calling 132 849.


Twitter: and #AusOpenGolf


 Story Credit: Golf Australia

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Fox prevails over amateur Luck

WA’s Daniel Fox has won his maiden tour victory by taking out the Nexus Risk TSA Group WA Open this afternoon at Royal Fremantle.

Fox was victorious by three shots over runner-up and low amateur winner Curtis Luck, who fell away on the back nine as Fox surged.

As the wind caused havoc with the rest of the field, Fox held his own and made four birdies on his back nine to race home for his maiden win, sealed with an emphatic 25-foot birdie putt on the last.

Fox could have three putted on 18 and still won, but unaware that Luck had bogeyed in the group ahead, Fox admitted to feeling the pressure.

“Standing on 18 I had a look at the leaderboard and saw a two shot lead and I was thinking ‘I hope that’s actually what it is’,” said Fox.

“I might need all three of them to try and get it in here. And then to hole it was just a dream, thank god that’s over.”

Before Fox could get off the 18th green, he was doused with two bottles of champagne purchased by his friends. To Fox, securing his win at home was so much sweeter.

“I actually didn’t think it would happen at home. I thought it was probably easier to be away where you don’t have all that involvement but it never seemed to faze me all day really, all week.”

Cottesloe’s Curtis Luck was philosophical about his runner-up finish. Despite a 4-over-par on the last five holes, Luck can already see the positives.

“I feel I put up a pretty good effort, especially in that last round — I just wasn’t able to finish it off,” said Luck.

“I didn’t hit the shots I needed to, but I’m extremely happy with the second (place finish), I would have taken that at the start of the week, so I’m really happy.”

As low amateur, Luck’s name will be etched on the prestigious Terry Gale cup, which has been a great indicator of future success with past winners including Brett Rumford, Stephen Leaney, Oliver Goss and Kim Felton.

“That’s extremely positive,” said Luck about his low amateur win.

“Obviously it’s nice playing in your home state, which make a massive difference and I had a massive support out there from Cottesloe members, so I’m really confident that down the line that I’ll be able to win here.”

“Whether as an amateur or as a professional, it’s definitely a sign of good things to come.”

- ENDS -

Story Credit: Golf WA

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Queenslanders tee it up in WA Open

Local hope Shae Wools-Cobb is trying to continue his WA luck after winning the Mandurah Amateur in September which saw him qualify for the WA Open at Royal Freemantle this week.

Playing his second national ranking event after the Isuzu Queensland Open in August, Wools-Cobb is contesting with some of Australia’s best professionals and fellow mates Jake McLeod and Taylor Macdonald, both relatively new to the professional scene.

Wools-Cobb finished even for his first round with McLeod currently one shot from leader Curtis Luck at five-under through nine, with fellow Queenslander Paul Hayden carding a two-under round.

“This is my first time travelling for a professional event… My preparation is the same and I’m hoping it’s a good week... Back in Queensland I had a look at the course and type of shots I would need. It’s sort of like Mandurah, it’s tight but not overly long. I’ve been working on keeping my ball flight lower as it gets pretty windy around here...”

Live score update available on PGA Australia
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Smith gets late WGC call-up

Cameron Smith swelled the Australian contingent to 10 at this week's WGC HSBC Champions event after American Billy Horschel was forced to withdraw through injury.

Smith took to Twitter to express his delight after receiving the late call-up though made sure to wish Horschel all the best.

"Got a start at HSBC!," he wrote. "@BillyHo_Golf get well soon! #onmychristmascardlist."

Smith had been first alternate for the limited field tournament which will give several Australians a huge opportunity to kick-start their 2016 seasons early.

PGA TOUR regulars Adam Scott, Marc Leishman, Steven Bowditch and Matt Jones are joined in Shanghai by Nick Cullen, Steven Jeffress, Greg Chalmers, Scott Hend and Andrew Dodt in the no cut, US$8.5 million tournament.

For Jeffress and Cullen in particular it is a huge opportunity to test their games on a bigger stage and one magical week could change the course of their careers.

The stakes aren't quite as high for European Tour regulars Dodt and Hend though a strong performance could see both advance to the last two events of the lucrative Race to Dubai Finals Series.

Adam Scott will start among the favourites after his brilliant runner-up performance in Malaysia last week, a final round 63 suggesting the 35-year-old is in rare form though with 14 of the world's top 20 players in the field he will need to be.

Story Credit: PGA Australia
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Identical scores win IBF Junior Classic

Teenagers Jed Morgan (scratch) and Karis Davidson (plus four) shot identical scores of two under par 70 to win the 25th Ian Baker-Finch Classic at Twin Waters yesterday (Sunday).

And it was fitting that these impressive rounds were played on the same day that the highest-profile former winner of the tournament, Adam Scott, returned his best round in almost two years with a bogey-free nine-under 63 to finish second in the CIMB Classic in Kuala Lumpur.

Baker-Finch was back on the Sunshine Coast on leave from his role as a golf analyst with CBS in the US and much to the delight of the 80 players, he and wife Jennie walked the fairways of Twin Waters and mixed freely with the youngsters. He later presented trophies to the various winners.

Not only did Morgan (Hatton Vale) and Davidson (Sanctuary Cove) have identical scores of two under par 70, they also both carded two bogeys and four birdies in their rounds. Morgan, a year 15year-old student at Kelvin Grove State College, finished two strokes clear of Lochie Coleborn (Mount Coolum) while Davidson was five shots clear of Aneka Park (Caloundra).

As a result of their victories, and courtesy of Baker-Finch, both Morgan and Davidson will receive an all-expenses trip to Melbourne next year to contest the final qualifying round of the prestigious Aaron Baddeley International. They will also be extended invitations into the Greg Norman Junior Masters and Invincibles Junior Masters Championships.

Morgan also receives an automatic exemption into the final qualifying round of the 2016 Isuzu Queensland Open and Davidson an exemption into the 2016 RACV Ladies Masters in February.

It has been a successful few weeks for both youngsters. Davidson won the prestigious 2015 Queensland Women's Stroke Play Championship last week and Morgan the 15 and under Gary Player Junior Classic. Both were 72-hole events.

While the gross winners carded identical rounds of 70, ironically both winners of the respective nett events also returned matching scores of 69. The girl’s nett was won by Samantha-Jane Windred of Pine Rivers while Jayden Bayliss (Gladstone) was the boy’s winner.

Supported by The Invincibles Sunshine Coast Junior Golf Tour, the importance pf the IBF Junior Classic was vindicated by the presence on the day of renowned coach Charlie Earp, PGA professionals Peter Heiniger and Steve Hutchison and Golf Queensland representative David Webber.

Story Credit: Tony Durkin

Photo: Jediah Morgan, Ian Baker-Finch, and Karis Davidson
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Scott's 63 falls one short
A dazzling final-round 63 fell short for Adam Scott in Malaysia today as the Australian produced his best performance since reverting to a traditional putter.

Scott posted a 25-under par total in the CIMB Classic in Kuala Lumpur, co-sanctioned by the United States PGA Tour and the Asian Tour, with a share of the lead.

But American Justin Thomas conjured a brave performance, recovering from a double bogey six at the 14th hole, where he hit his second shot into a lake, to birdie the 15th, 16th and 17th holes and regain the lead.

Even then, Thomas needed to make par at the par-five 18th hole to avoid a playoff with Scott.

When the 22-year-old smacked his birdie putt almost two metres past the cup it became a possibility. But he calmly stroked the par putt in to complete his first victory on the US PGA Tour.

"It's tough to win," said Thomas. "I understand we're in a sport where the winning percentage isn't in your favor. I've put myself in positions to win, and I just need to continue to do so."

Scott (68-66-66-63) had a brilliant week, using the claw grip that he adoped at the Presidents Cup recently.

He returns to Australia soon to compete in the UNIQLO Australian Masters at Huntingdale followed by the Emirates Australian Open at The Australian in Sydney.

Story Credit: 
Golf Australia 
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Walsh turns Pro
Prominent Queensland Amateur Amy Walsh has turned professional.

Wash, 19, will be attending the Ladies European Tour School in November hopeful to quality for the Ladies European Tour.

The Robina member turned professional last week after an impressive junior career. Walsh recently finished second at the South Pacific Ladies Classic earlier this month also taking out the Women’s Foursomes Championship in April with partner Kate Law.

The Queensland Academy of Sport squad member has been a member of the Women’s State Team for the past 2 years, captaining the victorious QLD Junior Team at the 2013 School Sport Australia Golf Championships.

Walsh has also represented Australia at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival against China, England and New Zealand in 2013. Amy attributes her father John and Coach David Nable as having the most influence on her career to date.

Golf Operations manager Luke Bates has been impressed with Walsh’s ongoing progress. 

“Amy should be proud of her achievements over the past couple of years at both junior and open age Championships," Mr Bates said. 

"She has been a great representative of her State and is one who strives to continually improve her game. Golf Queensland wishes her all the best in her professional career."

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McLeod turns Pro

Outstanding Queensland prospect Jake McLeod has turned professional.

McLeod, 21, plays for money for the first time at this week’s West Australian PGA Championship in Kalgoorlie in arguably the best form of his impressive early career.

The Royal Queensland member recently won his second Queensland Amateur Championship, becoming just the second person to do so in the past quarter-century after world No.1 Jason Day.

The former Townsville junior was also super impressive against the pros in the recent Isuzu Queensland Open, storming home with rounds of 67-68 on the tough Brookwater layout to finish as low amateur and tied for fourth overall.

The Queensland Academy of
Sport Member has been a member of the state men’s team for the past three years, including the Interstate Series champion team of 2013.

Queensland and national coach Tony Meyer has been impressed with McLeod’s ongoing progress.

“Jake has shown a lot of improvement in the past few years and his results show that he’s ready to take his game to the next level,” Meyer said.

“I’m confident that if Jake continues to work hard at his game, he has the capacity to become a successful international athlete.”

Follow the scores for the TX Civil & Logistics WA PGA Championship

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World-class amateur assault on Emirates Australian Open

A world-class amateur assault will launch at next month's Emirates Australian Open.

Three of the world's top 14 amateur golfers, including Australian Ryan Ruffels, will bid to become the first amateur since Aaron Baddeley in 1999 to hoist the Stonehaven Cup, and just the third after Bruce Devlin in 1960 since World War II.

Ruffels, ranked No.8, will join outstanding American pair Bryson DeChambeau (No.6) and Jordan Niebrugge (No.14) at The Australian Golf Club from November 26-29.

And joining this pair will be Ruffels' fellow Golf Australia national squad member Brett Coletta, the medallist at the recent US Amateur as winner of the strokeplay phase.

The quartet will compete against an elite professional field containing world No.2 and defending champion Jordan Spieth and fellow former rankings-toppers Adam Scott and Lee Westwood, both of whom are also past winners.

A host of other former Australian Open champions has already confirmed, including John Senden, Greg Chalmers and Geoff Ogilvy, while 2011 Open Championship winner Darren Clarke is also locked in, as are Presidents Cup stars Marc Leishman and Steve Bowditch.

DeChambeau is coming off victories at the US Amateur and NCAA Championship, becoming just the fifth player on an elite list – Jack Nicklaus, Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods and Ryan Moore – to have done so in the same year.

Niebrugge was low amateur in a stellar class at The Open at St Andrews this year. The Oklahoma State student was within three of the lead during the manic back nine in July, and his eventual T6 finish has already booked him a berth for the 2016 Open at Royal Troon.

 Ruffels, recently joint runner-up at the Asia-Pacific Amateur Championship with fellow Australian Cam Davis, said the Americans were quality golfers.

"They won't be as well known here yet, but those guys are really well respected in the amateur game. Their achievements this year were incredible," Ruffels said.

"The race for low am will be hot, but there's nothing to stop any of us winning overall. The amateurs are a lot better prepared these days to play against the pros and won't be intimidated by the occasion or back away from it.

"I wouldn't be surprised to see amateur contend or even win."

Davis, the Australian Amateur champion at the same course earlier this year, will not be playing the Open after season-ending wrist surgery.

The full amateur contingent is yet to be finalised.

The 2015 Emirates Australian Open, the 100th staging of the national championship, will be played at The Australian Golf Club from November 26-29.

The Emirates Australian Open is a flagship tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia. The winner will receive a minimum of 32 Official World Golf Ranking points.

The event will be telecast for all four days on Channel 7. 

Tickets are on sale now from Ticketek.

Story Credit: PGA Australia
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IBF flies home for his own golf classic

So important did he consider his presence at the 25th staging of the Ian Baker-Finch Junior Classic, the Sunshine Coast’s first winner of a golf major requested the staging of the event be delayed until this coming Sunday.

Baker-Finch, currently on sabbatical from his role as a golf analyst with CBS in the US, arrived back in Australia on the weekend and will be at Twin Waters on Sunday to welcome 80 of the best young golfers from southern Queensland. The IBF Junior Classic is supported by The Invincibles Sunshine Coast Junior Golf Tour and is back after a break last year.

And Invincibles president and founder, Graeme Miller, said talent in Sunday’s field was well and truly worthy of the presence of a golf luminary of the status of Ian Baker-Finch.

Heading the list of girls is the outstanding Karis Davidson (Sanctuary Cove), who last week won the 2015 Queensland Women’s Stroke Play Championship held on the Gold Coast.

“Karis plays off plus four, has had an outstanding year and is the stand-out among the girls playing on Sunday,” Miller said.

“But it will not be a walk in the park for Karis as local girls Rhianna-Maree Lewis (Maroochy River), Aneka Park (Caloundra) and Cassie Porter (Peregian Springs) are sure to make things interesting.”

Miller rated the boy’s division far more open, with the top-ranked players in the field used to ‘kicking each other’s butts to claim bragging rights to the next event’.

Steven Cox of Wantima recently won The Invincibles IGA Sunshine Coast Junior Masters Championship by eight shots, equalling the course record for the tournament, but he will be challenged by his good mate Lochie Coleborn (Mt Coolum) and Dylan Gardner of Kilcoy.

“No-one among the boys seems to dominate and Sunday could easily throw up another new winner,” he said.

And while merely meeting the golfing legend will be a thrill for the youngsters, an even greater enticement awaits the overall winner of the male and female divisions.

The boy’s winner will receive an automatic exemption into the final qualifying round of the 2016 Isuzu Queensland Open and the girl’s winner an exemption into the 2016 RACV Ladies Masters in February. And, courtesy of Baker-Finch, both will also receive and all-expenses trip to Melbourne next year to contest the final qualifying round of the prestigious Aaron Baddeley International. They will also receive invitations into the Greg Norman Junior Masters and Invincibles Junior Masters Championships.

Until last year’s hiatus the Ian Baker-Finch Junior Classic had been held at Beerwah Golf Club for 24 successive years. And the tournament host said he can proudly recall presenting trophies over the years to such prodigious local talents as Adam Scott, Katherine Hull and Stephen Bowditch.

“Sadly, the tournament lapsed last year for the lack of numbers and I was determined that would not happen again,” he said.

“I felt it was extremely important for the tournament to be rekindled and I was keen to have a hands-on involvement. I wanted to be back home this year and to have a presence at my tournament, and I’m really excited about Sunday.

“My goal is for this to be the re-start of something really big and special. And judging by the quality of the players competing, we are off to a great start.”

Baker-Finch regards Twin Waters as his ‘home’ course and said General Manager Steve Hutchison and his team had been extremely accommodating in hosting the event, which tees off at 7.15am on Sunday.

Story Credit: TONY DURKIN

  • Photo: Ian Baker-Finch and Invincibles president, Graeme Miller  

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    Classy Choi and match-play king McLeod too good in Qld Amateur Champs

    After last year’s Amateur Championships headed south of the border, 2015 would prove to be the year of the Queenslander.

    With three of the four semi-final combatants in both the Men’s (Jake McLeod, Shae Wools-Cobb and Mitchell Smith) and Women’s (Robyn Choi, Kirsty Hodgkins and Karis Davidson) Amateur hailing from Queensland, hopes were high for local victories.

     Standing in the way of a clean sweep were Jack Williams (South Australia) and Sophie Cusack (New South Wales).

    Sophie Cusack (Tenterfield) would prove to be a formidable competitor for Robyn Choi (RACV Royal Pines), having already knocked out the 3rd and 6th seeds on Thursday.

    Cusack took an early lead but Choi never gave in and with a par on the 18th, forced extra holes to decide the first finalist. A winner couldn’t be found until the third extra hole when Choi’s par was enough to end the run of Cusack.

    In the other semi-final, Women’s Stroke Play Champion and top seed Karis Davidson (Sanctuary Cove) was looking to continue her dominance with her previous two matches reading like a tennis score (7/5 and 6/4).

    Standing in her way was fellow State team member Kirsty Hodgkins (Redcliffe). An early blitz from Davidson had her 3-up after 9 holes and it was too much for Hodgkins to overcome, with Davidson closing out the match 4/3.

    The afternoon 18 hole final looked to be heading Davidson’s way as she again started strongly to be 3-up heading to the 10th tee. With seven holes to play, it appeared that the morning’s extra holes had taken its toll on Choi.

    Looks can be deceiving. Choi went on one of the more remarkable runs seen in the Qld Amateur. Birdies on the 12th, 13th (matched by Davidson), 15th, 16th and 17th had Choi standing on the 18th tee with a one hole lead that even the grandest soothsayer couldn’t have foreseen!

    When Davidson missed the green with her approach and didn’t hole her chip, Choi had two putts from 25ft to claim the title. A nervous attempt to lag to “gimmee” range left Choi with a 4ft left to right sliding putt to close out the match.

    Gathering her composure, Choi wasted no time in stepping up and duly holing the putt for a 1-up victory and the 2015 Queensland Women’s Amateur Championship. Choi is experiencing a stellar 2015, with the Amateur win adding to the Katherine Kirk Classic she won less than a month ago.

    With the top four seeds knocked out of the championship on Thursday, the Men’s Amateur title was wide open. The 2012 champion Jake McLeod (Royal Queensland) took on South Australian Jack Williams (The Grange), whilst in the other semi, Shae Wools-Cobb (Maroochy-River) battled Mitchell Smith (Oxley).

    McLeod is a passionate North Qld Cowboys supporter and he appeared to be copying his team with slow starts. He was fortunate to even make the semi-final as in his first match Thursday, McLeod found himself four down through six holes and staring at an early exit. His fighting qualities were on display as he not only won that match but also his quarter final after trailing. 

    Williams knew he needed a fast start and took the lead by 1 after 3 holes. A stunning approach on the fourth was the spark for a McLeod masterclass as he made birdie upon birdie to be 4-up with six holes to play. With a two putt par on the par 3-14th, McLeod was through to his third Queensland Amateur final in four years. 

    The Wools-Cobb & Smith match was a thriller. There was never more than a two hole advantage to either player, with both seeking to reach their maiden Amateur final. The consistent ball striking of Wools-Cobb proved too much in the end for the valiant Smith, who himself is enjoying the best year of his brief career, having already qualified for the2015 Isuzu Queensland Open. Wools-Cobb emerged a 1-up winner when the 18th hole was halved, and set up a mouth watering clash with Queensland team mate McLeod.

    After both players opened with pars, Wools-Cobb won the second hole but a costly three putt on the fourth evened the contest.

    The next half hour would prove to be crucial. McLeod holed a long range putt for a birdie two on the sixth to go 1-up. His drive on the seventh found trouble and when his second shot ricocheted off a nearby tree, Wools-Cobb looked like comfortably taking the hole. A miraculous third shot, under trees and between water hazards left McLeod with a 60ft putt for birdie. Wools-Cobb didn’t apply enough pressure with his approach and when both players two-putted for par, McLeod had dodged a bullet.

    Knowing that he couldn’t let opportunities like that slip, Wools-Cobb pounded his drive down the ninth and struck his approach shot to within four feet. A birdie restored parity to the contest but unfortunately that was the closest Wools-Cobb would get again.

    McLeod’s par on 10 was enough to regain the lead and despite a remarkable sand save on the 12th Wools-Cobb couldn’t get the vital hole win. With time running out, Wools-Cobb remained patient but a poor tee shot on the par 3-14th gave McLeod a two-hole advantage which he ultimately extended on the 16th to claim a 3/2 victory.

    Wools-Cobb should be extremely proud of his efforts this past week, having finished fifth in the Men’s Stroke Play and runner-up in the Amateur.

    For McLeod, he becomes only the second player in over 25 years to win the Queensland Men’s Amateur title on multiple occasions. The other player – World Number One Jason Day!

    With the anticipation that McLeod will enter the professional ranks in the not too distant future, his amateur match play record is the envy of many (11-1 Qld Amateur, 22-9-2 Interstate Series) and has certainly earned him the moniker of Jake “Match Play King” McLeod!

    Southport Golf Club is to be congratulated for the magnificent hospitality shown to the competitors over the past two days. As always full credit goes to Stuart Moore and his ground staff for presenting the course in fantastic condition.

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    Michel and Davidson victorious at Queensland Men’s and Women’s Stroke Play Championship

    Kyle Michel (Shepparton) and Karis Davidson (Sanctuary Cove) have won their respective titles at the 2015 Queensland Men’s and Women’s Stroke Play Championships held at Arundel Hills Country Club and Palm Meadows on the Gold Coast.

    Women’s Stroke Play

    Davidson opened the Championship with an even par round of 72, followed by a second round of four-under par 68.

    She was able to cope with the warm weather after players were hampered by hot conditions during the final 36 holes. Just two shots back from 36 hole leader Jiwon Jeon, Davidson went on to return a third round 71 (-1).

    “After the front nine of my final round I thought I had a really strong chance at winning the tournament,” Davidson said.

    Her closing round of four-under par 68 was enough to win the Championship by two shots to Hills members Jiwon Jeon recording a 279 tournament total victory.

    Jeon finished the tournament on 281, seven-under for the 72 hole event.  After an opening three-under par 69 and a second round of five-under par 67, Jeon was in a commanding position heading into the final day.  

    After with a disappointing one-over par (73) third round, Jeon was able to regain her composure for the afternoon, posting an even-par round of 72. However, it wasn’t enough to stop Davidson’s consistent final round.

    Western Australian player Hannah Green (Mt Lawley) finished in outright third after she fired rounds of 69,69,75 and 69 for a total of 282 (-6).

    Kirsty Hodgkins (Redcliffe) shot the tournament’s best score of six under-par 66 in the final round.

    Palm Meadows is to be congratulated for the magnificent condition of the course and the hospitality shown to all the players and caddies.

    Men’s Stroke Play

    Players were greeted with a perfect morning on Day One of the Qld Men’s Stroke Play Championship, yet it was only Lochlan Coleborn (Mt Coolum) who took advantage of the best conditions to register a one-under 71.

    With winds picking up in the afternoon, Coleborn’s score looked tough to match, yet late in the field Shae Wools-Cobb leapt to the front with a fine three-under 69. No sooner had Wools-Cobb reached the top, than Shepparton visitor Kyle Michel returned a course record equaling 67!

    Day Two proved challenging to the overnight leader after Michel couldn’t find the magic of round 1 and dropped back slightly with a 76. Playing the consistent golf he is renowned for, Pacific’s 2015 Gary Player Classic Champion Blake Proverbs moved into contention after rounds of 71 and 72.

    The bolt from the blue was James Grierson (Bonnie Doon) who after a first round score of 75, shot to the Championship lead with a flawless, course record six-under 66. Joining Grierson and Proverbs in the final group on Tuesday was Hills International’s Charles Pilon with a fine round of 68 accompanying his opening 73.

    Day Three was going to be a 36 hole battle around the demanding Arundel Hills layout, and so it proved for Grierson who sadly slipped down the leaderboard after a challenging round 3 finish. Rocketing to the head of the leaderboard were Brayden Petersen (Monash) and Blake Collyer (Metropolitan) after returning rounds of 67. Proverbs and Michel were battling to the end and with Pilon still lurking, the final 18 holes would be a championship shoot out.

    Early birdies for Michel put him in a strong position as Collyer’s disastrous opening 3 holes left him fighting to make the top 16 who would contest the Men’s Amateur later in the week. Pilon and Proverbs stayed in the hunt as Michel stumbled with bogeys on 12, 15 and 16. A birdie on the 72
    nd hole meant Michel set the clubhouse benchmark with a 285 (-3) total.

    Playing in the group behind Michel, Pilon lost his chance to claim the title with a penultimate hole bogey which left him 3 shots adrift with one hole to play.

    Proverbs however was only two shots behind and needing an eagle to force a playoff. After missing the green right, Proverbs chip shot didn’t threaten the hole and Kyle Michel secured the 2015 Queensland Men’s Stroke Play Champion. Pilon snatched the runner up position and thoughts of what could have been with a 40ft eagle putt to end his championship.

    Myoung Kim (Sanctuary Cove) was a three shot victor of the 72 hole Nett prize from New Zealand visitor Duncan Croudis (Otago).

    Arundel Hills Country Club and especially Superintendent Todd McCully’s team are to be applauded for the wonderful presentation of the course. The players were treated to fantastic hospitality, to which Akiko Thomas, David Baird and Peter Macrae deserve to be wholeheartedly thanked.

    Champion of Champions

    The Champion of Champion’s event is open to all players who have won a Club or District Championship in the previous year with the title was decided over the first 36 holes.

    Women’s Champion Jiwon Jeon (Hills International) emerged a four-shot victory over Karis Davidson with rounds of 69 and 67.

    Men’s Champion Shae Wools-Cobb (Maroochy River) won the Champions title with rounds of 69 and 75. Wools-Cobb held a two shot margin from Lochlan Coleborn (Mt Collum).

    Queensland Amateur Championship Matchplay Event

    The top 16 players from the Stroke Play will now progress through to compete in the Queensland Amateur Championship (Matchplay) to be held at Southport Golf Club 22-23 October. The top 16 players from the stroke play will enjoy a well-earned day’s rest before heading to Southport.

    Women’s Top 16:  Karis DAVIDSON, Jiwon JEON, Hannah GREEN, Celina YUAN, Kirsty HODGKINS, Sheridan GORTON, Robyn CHOI, Deedee-taylah RUSSELL, Jenny LEE, Lisa EDGAR, Sophie CUSACK, Amy WALSH, Chizuru UEDA, Eunice KIM, Victoria FRICOT, Karen KIM.

    Men’s Top 16: Kyle MICHEL, Charles PILON, Blake PROVERBS, Brayden PETERSON, Shae WOOLS-COBB, Jake MCLEOD, Ben FERGUSON, Mitchell SMITH, Jack SULLIVAN, Jack WILLIAMS, Dylan PERRY, Duncan CROUDIS, Thomas POWER HORAN, Myoung KIM, Daniel GALE, Blake COLLYER.

    2015 Champion of Champions Jiwon Jeon and Shae Wools-Cobb

    Full results available here
    Photos from Round 4 are now available on the Golf Queensland Facebook Page

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    Three former winners commit to Australian Open

    Three former winners have joined the hot field for the Emirates Australian Open at The Australian Golf Club in Sydney next month.

    Geoff Ogilvy, John Senden and Greg Chalmers have all committed to their national Open to join the likes of world No. 2 Jordan Spieth, Australia’s US Masters champion Adam Scott, Englishman Lee Westwood and Northern Ireland’s Darren Clarke in the field for the November 26-29  championship.

    American Spieth, the hottest player in the world for most of 2015, is defending the title he won at The Australian with a magnificent, closing 63 last year.

    The addition of Ogilvy, Senden and Chalmers, all veteran United States PGA Tour players, brings to 11 the number of former winners of the Australian Open playing next month.

    The others are Robert Allenby, Stuart Appleby, Craig Parry, Peter Senior, Peter Fowler, Peter Lonard, Westwood and Scott.

    Presidents Cup players Steven Bowditch and Marc Leishman also are playing next month, along with US Tour regular Matt Jones, giving the Open one  of the deepest fields seen in years.

    Celebrations are planned for the 100th playing of the country’s most prestigious golf tournament, which dates to 1804.

    Ogilvy won the Open at The Lakes in 2010. Senden triumphed with two superb closing birdies at Royal Sydney in 2006, and Chalmers has won twice – at Royal Adelaide in 1998 and again at The Lakes in 2011.

    Ogilvy, who broke Australia’s major-winning drought when he won the US Open at Winged Foot in 2006, is an eight-time winner on the US Tour. He won more than $US653,000 in America last season.

    Senden, ranked 71st in the world, had another fine season in 2014-15, earning $US1.4 million and finishing 23rd on the Fedex Cup rankings.

    Western Australia’s Chalmers made 12 cuts on the US Tour last season and is a regular contender in his national Open, finishing fourth at The Australian last year.

    The championship is owned by Golf Australia and is managed by Lagardere Sports with the assistance of TRP Sports.

    The 2015 Emirates Australian Open, the 100th staging of the national championship, will be played at The Australian Golf Club from November 26-29.

    The Emirates Australian Open is a flagship tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia. The winner will receive a minimum of 32 Official World Golf Ranking points.

    The event will be telecast for all four days on Channel 7. 

    Tickets are on sale now from Ticketek at or by calling 132 849.


    Twitter: and #AusOpenGolf


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    Hend cruises to victory at Macau Open

    Australian Scott Hend Sunday won a second Venetian Macau Open victory in three years after holding off title holder Anirban Lahiri and Chiragh Kumar of India with a final round of five-under-par 66.

    Hend cruised to a three-stroke triumph at the Macau Golf and Country Club to become only the second player after China’s Zhang Lian-wei to win twice at the US$1 million Asian Tour event with a tournament record of 20-under-par 264.

    The 42-year-old, who was pipped by Lahiri last year, collected the winner's cheque of $180,000. Lahiri and Kumar shared second place after closing with a 66 and 65 respectively.

    "Feel relieve and rewarded as I've worked hard the last few weeks in Europe," said Hend, who entered the last day with a three-shot cushion.

    "I knew Anirban wasn’t going to go away. He's a great player and I just went out there with the aim to shoot a good score as I knew they had to catch me," he said in comments supplied by the event organisers.

    "I can’t really remember much about 2013 (his previous win). I remember more about last year where I didn’t play solid down the stretch and Anirban got me. So this year, it is a different feeling," he added.

    Leading scores (par 71):

    264 - Scott Hend (AUS) 66-68-64-66

    267 - Chiragh Kumar (IND) 67-66-69-65, Anirban Lahiri (IND) 66-67-68-66

    270 - Brett Munson (USA) 66-74-65-65.

    272 - Niall Turner (IRL) 70-68-67-67

    273 - Jazz Janewattananond (THA) 67-72-67-67, Kiradech Aphibarnrat (THA) 68-71-66-68

    274 - Javi Colomo (ESP) 66-72-69-67, Sam Brazel(AUS) 68-66-69-71, Rashid Khan (IND) 70-65-68-71

    Story Credit: Yahoo News

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    Kuchar wins in Fiji

    After raging winds and a challenging four days on course, Matt Kuchar emerged victorious at the 2015 Fiji International.

    After starting the final round with a two shot lead, Kuchar fired 3-under 69 which saw the the World Number 16 end the week on 4-under the card and four shots ahead of Australian Professional, Aron Price.

    "Its been a great week. It's been so much fun to have the family here and have Dad caddying for me. To finish on top has really made it an excellent week, one I'm sure I'll never forget," said Kuchar.

    "I knew I had to play some really good golf to try and have a chance at this title and I played some great golf this week. I was excited to come out on top."

    "Winning is a hard thing to do regardless of where you are, US PGA or Fiji, there are great players everywhere."

    Kuchar pulled away from the field early thanks to four birdies on the front nine which were helped by calmer weather conditions.

    "With the wind blowing the way it was on Thursday and Friday, if you're not hitting it good you many not break 90, it was that challenging."

    The Fiji International is Kuchar's first win since the RBC Heritage on the PGA TOUR in April 2014.

    It was also his first appearance at the Fiji International after arriving fresh from a Team USA win at last week's Presidents Cup in Korea.

    It is hoped that Kuchar will return in 2016 to defend his title, alluding to the fact that it wouldn't take much for him to return.

    "We've had an amazing time in Fiji and you probably don't have to twist my arm too hard to get me back to Fiji. It's been a great week and certainly it's a destination I enjoy getting back to."

    Price meanwhile went bogey free in the final round firing 1-under 71 to finish his week on even par and outright second.

    "I hit 16 greens in regulations, on the two I missed I made pars I didn't have a bogey all day, just not enough birdies," said Price.

    Rounding out the top-5 finishes at this year's Fiji International were Vijay Singh, Ryan Fox and Nick Cullen.

    Hometown hero Singh had a bogey free round shooting a course record of 7-under 65 that included seven birdies to finish 1-over the card to tie for third with Fox and Cullen.

    New Zealander Fox fired 5-under 67 which included seven birdies to finished the week on 1-over the card.

    A costly double bogey on the front nine made things though for Cullen, who also managed to fire seven birdies in his round of 5-under 67, to join Singh and Fox on 1-over.

    Story Credit: PGA Australia

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    Ian Baker-Finch Junior Classic
    Every now and then opportunities arrive at our door step that are very difficult to ignore or pass up? That’s why The Invincibles Tour is thrilled to bits to be able to support and announce that the 2015 Ian Baker – Finch Junior Classic will be hosted by Twin Waters Golf Club “Sunday the 1st of November” which in itself is incredibly exciting, but what really makes this a very special occasion, is that Ian is going to…………

    Fly in from America to host his own Junior Classic and present the awards and he would like to invite every junior golfer (no matter what age) and their families, to bring a friend and join him as he mixes with our juniors and their parents to offer encouragement, support and feedback on what’s required to make it to the top as a Touring Professional.

    And if that isn’t enough to get your attention, every competitor will receive a show bag on arrival as well as playing for prestigious awards. Such as an exemption for the boy’s winner into the final qualifying round of the Queensland Open in 2016. The girl winner will receive an exemption into the 2016 Ladies Masters Championship at Royal Pines from the 25th to the 28th of February. (Subject to qualifying criteria)

    The Boy and Girl winner of the Ian Baker – Finch Junior Classic will also receive an all expenses paid trip to Victoria to contest the final qualifying round for the Aaron Baddeley International Championship (October) with the finals being held in America in December 2016 for the lucky winners (dates and time to be confirmed)

    And if the above is still not enough to wet your appetite or get your interest, Ian’s Junior Classic will also be a qualifier for The Invincibles IGA Sunshine Coast Junior Masters and Greg Norman Junior Masters Championships, The Invincibles Course Cup and Gold Cup of Cups Championships as well as an Invincibles Inter – Club Team Shield points scorer and Matchplay Championship qualifier along with a myriad of prizes in all divisions for boys and girls.

    The Invincibles Tour would like to encourage all junior golfers to pass on the word to your friends because this is one opportunity that you can’t afford to let pass you by.

    To find our more click here 

    The Tour and their members look forward to catching up with everyone at Twin Waters Golf Club to enjoy what promises to an exceptional day out.

    “The Invincibles Tour would like to extend their thanks and appreciation to Golf Australia, PGA of Australia, RACV Ladies Masters - Royal Pines Golf Resort, Golf Queensland, Queensland Governmant, Junior Golf Foundation of Queensland, TGA Golf, the Aaron Baddeley Foundation and Twin Waters Golf Club for their very generous support of the much sort after and very prestigious Ian Baker Finch Junior Classic”
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    Quayle wins 2015 Keperra Bowl Championship

    Anthony Quayle (Sanctuary Cove) has won the 2015 Keperra Bowl at the Keperra Country Golf Club after a fantastic display of consistency over the four days. 

    The Queensland Academy of Sport Member was nothing but brilliant all week, firing a first round six-under par (66) and solid even par (72) in the second round. His two round total of 138 placed him in the top groups heading into the final 36 holes.

    Quayle fired a  third day, one-under par (71) to elevate him further up the leaderboard and one shot back heading into the final round. He shot a flawless front nine that included four birdies, with three birdies and three bogies on the back nine. Quayle closed out his tournament with a four under par round 68, giving him a four round total of 277 (-11).

    Austin Bautista (Bonnie Doon) and Kiran Day (Cottesloe) tied for outright second, two shots behind Quayle. Last year’s champion Troy Moses (Bonnie Doon) fired rounds of 68, 73 and 72, for the first three rounds, to put him in contention leading into the final day. He returned a final round score of 67 to finish three shots back (280) for the tournament. 

    Final round leader Charlie Dann (Pelican Waters) finished in equal third place after a solid back nine with only one bogey to finish 73. Third place was also shared with Troy Moses (Bonnie Doon), Andrew Schonewille (Yarra Yarra
    ), Blake Collyer (Metropolitan GC), Mitchell Gannon (Bonnie Doon) and Daniel Gale (Castle Hill), finishing the tournament with 280 (-8).

    The Keperra Country Golf Club course was presented in outstanding condition, proving again to be a fantastic Championship facility. Special thanks to the superintendent and his staff.

    The majority of the field from this year’s championship will now travel down to the Gold Coast to compete in the 2015 Queensland Men’s Stroke Play Championship at Arundel Hills Country Club, Sunday 18 - Tuesday 20 October.

    For complete scores from the 2015 Keperra Bowl, please

    Photos from Round 4 are available on the
    Golf Queensland Facebook Page

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    Leishman, Bowditch bolster Australian Open field

    Two of Australia’s Presidents Cup aces are the latest to join the star-studded Emirates Australian Open field.

    Victorian Marc Leishman, 31, and Queenslander Steven Bowditch, 32, have today joined the parade of champions lining up to contest the Stonehaven Cup.

    Alongside current world No.1 Jordan Spieth, former world No.1’s Adam Scott and Lee Westwood and 2011 Open Championship hero Darren Clarke, the Aussie duo will compete at The Australian Golf Club in Sydney next month.

    Tournament director Trevor Herden was thrilled with the commitment of two of Australia’s brightest lights.

    “Both Marc and Steven have really made giant strides this year and it’s great to see them come back and not only support their national championship, but to both be back with legitimate shots at the title,” Herden said.

    “Marc was so close at the Open Championship in the playoff, and Steven won the Byron Nelson in Texas – then both showed the world they felt right at home at the elite level when they won their singles matches at the Presidents Cup.

    “It just seems like they’re both really ready to take the next step in their careers and maybe the Emirates Australian Open is where they take it.”

    Leishman, whose world ranking peaked at No.27 this year after he was part of a three-way playoff at the Open Championship at St Andrews, will play his sixth national championship but first since 2012 because of commitments with his young family in the United States.

    Bowditch, who has won tournaments on the US PGA Tour in consecutive years, will play the Australian Open for the 12th time having twice finished seventh, including as an amateur in 2000.

    The championship is owned by Golf Australia and is managed by Lagardere Sports with the assistance of TRP Sports.

    The 2015 Emirates Australian Open, the 100th staging of the national championship, will be played at The Australian Golf Club from November 26-29.

    The Emirates Australian Open is a flagship tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia. The winner will receive a minimum of 32 Official World Golf Ranking points.

    The event will be telecast for all four days on Channel 7. 

    Tickets are on sale now from Ticketek at or by calling 132 849.


    Twitter: and #AusOpenGolf


    Story Credit: PGA Australia

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    Westwood, Clarke commit to Australian Open
    A past champion and a major winner are the latest players to commit to the Emirates Australian Open field.

    Former winner Lee Westwood and Open Championship hero Darren Clarke will join defending champ and world No.1 Jordan Spieth and local hero Adam Scott in the elite field at The Australian Golf Club from November 26-29.

    Westwood, a former world No.1 and one of the most prolific international winners of his generation, sprung to international prominence when he won the 1997 Australian Open at Melbourne’s Metropolitan Golf Club.

    The Englishman fended off challenges from Vijay Singh and Phil Mickelson to finish tied with five-time Australian Open winner Greg Norman at 14 under, then outduelled the “Great White Shark” on the fourth hole of a sudden-death playoff to become the first European to lift the Stonehaven Cup – a post he held alone until Rory McIlroy followed suit in 2013.

    “Obviously I have a lot of great memories of the Australian Open so I am really excited to be heading there again,” said Westwood, a perennial at the top end of the world rankings.

    “We all enjoy playing in Australia because of the standard of the courses, the knowledgeable fans and the great weather. It is also a really strong field again this year so it will be a superb spectacle.”

    Westwood, 42, has proven himself a true global player since his Australian Open win with victories in the United States, Europe, Japan, on the Asian and South Africa’s Sunshine Tour during a glittering career that has yielded 42 professional titles and a staggering 17 top-10 finishes in major championships.

    He also boasts a wonderful Ryder Cup record, representing Europe nine times for seven victories, five times a teammate of his good mate, Clarke.

    Clarke, 47, the incoming European Ryder Cup captain, famously won the Open Championship at Royal St George’s in 2011, but he’s no stranger to Australia, either. A popular figure wherever he plays, the Northern Irishman has won 14 times on the European Tour.

    “The Australian Open has a wonderful history and has been won by many of the game’s greatest players and with the likes of Lee, Jordan and Adam playing this November, we are in for a real treat,” Clarke said.

    Golf Australia’s tournament director Trevor Herden was thrilled with the addition of both players for the final event on OneAsia’s 2015 schedule.

    “Darren is an extremely entertaining player and engages with the fans and is always good value to have around the tournament,” Herden said.

    “Lee is one of the most successful players of this era, including having won our national championship before. He is one of the best ball-strikers and most consistent players in the world, so we can’t wait to see if he can get his hands on a second Stonehaven Cup.”

    NSW Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events and Minister for Sport, Stuart Ayres said it would be great to see Westwood and Clarke in Sydney in November.

    “Lee and Darren are both legends of the game and form part of a world-class field of golfers at this year’s Australian Open,” Mr Ayres said.

    “The NSW Government is proud to have secured this event for Sydney through our tourism and major events agency Destination NSW; and with players such as Lee, Darren, Australian champion Adam Scott and current world No.1 Jordan Spieth, it promises to attract visitors from all over the globe to our state.”

    The championship is owned by Golf Australia and is managed by Lagardere Sports with the assistance of TRP Sports.

    Watch highlights of Westwood's 1997 Australian Open win

    The 2015 Emirates Australian Open, the 100
    th staging of the national championship, will be played at The Australian Golf Club from November 26-29.

    The Emirates Australian Open is a flagship tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia. The winner will receive a minimum of 32 Official World Golf Ranking points.

    The event will be telecast for all four days on Channel 7. 

    Tickets are on sale now from Ticketek at
      or by calling 132 849.


    Twitter: and #AusOpenGolf

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    Aussies give their all at Presidents Cup

    The Australians made their presence felt in the Sunday singles at the Presidents Cup, contributing three points out of a possible four as the Internationals came within a whisker of winning the event for just the second time.

    Adam Scott led the final day charge, handing Players' Champion Rickie Fowler a 6 & 5 drubbing to draw first blood for the Internationals and set up a thrilling finale at the Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in Korea.

    Steven Bowditch and Marc Leishman scored upset wins in their matches, Bowditch accounting for Jimmy Walker while Leishman claimed the biggest scalp of the week with a 1 up win over World Number One Jordan Spieth.

    Jason Day was the only Australian not to win his singles match, Open champion Zach Johnson too good for the World Number Two.

    After a disappointing showing in the four balls and foursomes, the Australians came out firing on Sunday, Scott posting the first point of the day with his thrashing of Fowler and setting the tone for a courageous fight back.

    The former Masters champion found the putting form which had eluded him most of the week, four straight birdies from the seventh taking him to an unassailable lead and the match finishing on the 13th green.

    Playing four groups behind Scott in the sixth match of the day Bowditch staged one of the comebacks of the week after making the turn 1 down to multiple PGA TOUR winner Walker.

    The Queenslander turned the match on the back nine, racing to a 3 up lead through 14 before eventually closing it out 2 up on the 18th green.

    Leishman, though, was the standout performer on Sunday winning a tight encounter with 2015's duel Major winner and player of the year Jordan Spieth.

    Spieth was fast out of the gate taking a 2 up lead through two holes but the cool Victorian wasn't fazed and made a brilliant birdie at the ninth to head to the back nine all square.

    Not to be denied Spieth immediately won the 10th, Leishman squaring the match at 12 before the American again got his nose in front at 13.

    Leishman squared the match for the final time with a birdie at 14 then took a decisive 1 up lead on the very next hole which he held till the 18th.

    The three Australian points were crucial in giving the Internationals a chance to win the Cup for just the second time, and first since 1998, but it wasn't to be.

    The ultimate pressure fell to rookies Anirban Lahiri of India and local hero Sang Moon Bae but both made crucial errors at vital moments to allow the Americans to triumph again.

    Lahiri, who didn't have his best game all week, showed enormous heart to square his match with PGA TOUR star Chris Kirk thanks to a brilliant up and down birdie at the par-4 14th.

    The pair remained square until the 18th where Lahiri, facing a three-foot putt to halve the match, faltered and missed, the US gaining an unexpected point.

    The outcome of the four days' play hung in the balance as the final match of the day between Sang Moon Bae and Bill Haas arrived at the 18th with Haas holding a slender 1 up lead.

    Bae needed to win the hole to earn a half point and tie the contest at 15 points apiece but under almost unimaginable pressure, in front of a home crowd, missed a greenside chip, handing Haas a 2 up win and the American team the Cup.

    Story Credit: PGA Australia

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    Ballard and Sim Qld PGA Foursomes Champions

    Matthew Ballard and former US PGA Tour star Michael Sim have today added their names to one of the PGA’s more historic trophies, after taking out the 2015 Club Car Queensland PGA Foursomes Championship.  

    Starting the day as one of the favourites, Ballard and Sim were quick to get out of the gates, holding a one shot lead after the opening 18 holes with a four under par, 66. They continued to set the pace early in the afternoon, though a number of late bogies would not assure them of victory.

    Trainee professionals Anna Stanton and Jade Fisher were lurking only one shot behind heading into the final 18 and when they posted a second consecutive three under par 67, it looked as though history could be made as they held the Clubhouse lead at six under par alongside Tim Hart and Chris Wood.

    Unfortunately it would be one shy of the winning total, as Ballard and Sim held it together on their final hole to post a final round three under par 67 for a one stroke win after finishing at seven under.

    After finishing third last year, both Ballard and Sim were pleased to have their named etched in PGA history alongside previous winners Ian Baker-Finch and Peter Senior. “It is great to have our names alongside some of the all time greats of Australian Golf,” said Ballard following his round.

    “Although it’s never easy playing foursomes, it certainly helps when you have so much trust in your playing partner. Michael played great out there today and although we tried hard to lose it over the final few holes, it was certainly his form on the course that was the catalyst behind our victory here today.”

    It has been the year of first’s for female trainee’s following on from Alexandra Orchard’s win at the Pampling Plate earlier in the year, with Anna Stanton and Jade Fisher becoming the first all female combination to claim the Qld Trainee Foursomes Championship. Although happy with their day, the pair will no doubt rue the opportunity they had to become the first female winners of the open Qld PGA Foursomes Championship, after making an astonishing 13 birdies over the 36 holes.

    This year would also see the inaugural Qld Senior PGA Foursomes staged, with Mark Tickle and Ossie Moore securing victory with a six over par 76. The duo were honoured with being crowned the inaugural winners, with the win adding to Moore’s collection, which includes the QLD PGA Championship and the QLD Senior PGA Championship.

    Professionals are now enjoying the hospitality of the Howeston Pro-Am today, with the event celebrating its 36th anniversary.   

    The Sunshine Swing forms part of the Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series which comprises of 200 events Australia wide.

    Played across more than 170 golf courses around Australia the Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series plays an important part in the development of Australia’s Professional Golfers whilst also growing the game at a grass roots level by engaging an estimated 48,000 amateur golfers each year.

    For all of the results from the Club Car Queensland PGA Foursomes Championship please click here.

    Story Credit: PGA Australia

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    Queensland Duo make it a Clean Sweep at Stonebridge

    Much like the NRL Grand Final, the 2015 Srixon International Sub Junior Classic has ended as an all Queensland affair. 

    Louis Dobbelaar dominated the Sub Junior Boys Championship since round one.  The mighty Queenslander held the number one position from the opening round and continued this domination throughout the Championship.  He completed the four-day tournament with an impressive 4 under par score of 68. With his previous three rounds of 68, 73, 70 Louis finished on a total of 279 (9 under par) and 16 shots ahead of his nearest rival and reigning 2014 Champion Cooper Geddes (Western Australia).Harrison Crowe (St Michael’s) was the best New South Welshman in the Sub Junior event finishing in third place on a total of 297.

    Fellow Queenslander Joy Mannix was just too strong for the girls field finishing with a final round 77 to give her total of 304 (16 over par) and crown her the Sub Junior Girls Champion. Western Australian duo of Kathryn Norris and Maddison Hinson-Tolchard rounded out the top three on scores of 314 and 316 respectively. Avondale’s Grace Kim was the best of the NSW girls finishing in fourth place with a four round total of 318.

    Boys Championship - Par 288
    279 - Louis Dobbelaar (QLD)
    295 - Cooper Geddes (WA)
    297 - Harrison Crowe (St Michael's) 

    Girls Championship - Par 288
    304 - Joy Mannix (QLD)
    314 - Kathryn Norris (WA)
    316 - Maddison Hinson-Tolchard (WA)
    Boys 12 Years and Under
    Scratch - Kaito Chiu (QLD) 315
    Nett – Jacob Dundas (Toronto 12) 288
    Girls 12 Years and Under
    Scratch - Yuka Lin (Cammeray) 343
    Nett - Jasmine Driscoll (Hurstville 28) 294
    Boys 13 Years
    Scratch - Harrison Crowe (St Michael's) 297
    Nett – Joshuaa Robards (Belmont 12) 292
    Girls 13 Years
    Scratch - Maddison Hinson-Tolchard (WA) 316
    Nett - Annika Boyd (Toukley 13) 300
    Boys 14 Years
    Scratch - Louis Dobbelaar (QLD) 279
    Nett - Blade Gadd (Penrith 6) 289
    Girls 14 Years
    Scratch - Joy Mannix (QLD) 304
    Nett - Sophie Martell (QLD 17) 294

    For a full list of results from the event click here.

    Story Credit: Jack Newton Junior Golf

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    Mixed success for couple
    Impressive Sunshine Coast golfer Charlie Dann has added yet another title to his trophy cabinet, this time with girlfriend Milli Stuurop by his side.

    The pair won the Pelican Waters mixed foursomes at the weekend, giving Dann his third championship – and honour board event - at the club within the past two months. He had previously won the club championship and match play title.

    Playing off plus three, Dann and Stuurop (six) returned a seven-over 79 during the first 18 holes of the mixed foursomes before scorching home with a one-under 71 in the afternoon. Jackson Hopkins and Karen Furlong were runners-up.

    While Dann’s form is a continuation of an outstanding year, Stuurop has also been a revelation. Following a three-year break from the game because of a shoulder injury, she did not resume playing until March.

    Dann’s other major wins in 2015 have been at the Sunshine Coast Men’s Open amateur golf championship at Headland Golf Club over the Easter weekend and the prestigious Queensland State Amateur Burleigh Cup, at Burleigh Heads, in May. The 22-year-old also shot a blistering six-under 64 at Virginia Club last month to qualify for his first Isuzu Queensland Open. –TONY DURKIN

    IMAGE: Charlie Dann and Milli Stuurop, Pelican Waters mixed foursomes champions

    Send us your club news! Email Kirsty Wrice at Golf Queensland 
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    2016 PGA Tour of Australasia season announced
    The Australian summer of golf will continue into 2016 with the PGA Tour of Australasia schedule offering plenty of golf action in the start of the new year.

    While Australia is bracing itself for a bumper summer of golf in the coming months with the European Tour, Jordan Spieth, Ernie Els and Adam Scott all confirmed to be heading down under, the PGA Tour of Australasia early 2016 schedule has today been announced.

    The Tour will get back underway from the 4-7 February 2016 at the Oates Vic Open. Heading back to Thirteenth Beach Golf Links the tournament will again see the men’s and women’s championship played concurrently for the same amount of prize money, a minimum of $250,000.

    The Mercedes-Benz Truck and Bus Victorian PGA Championship will be played the following week at the prestigious Huntingdale Golf Club from the 9-12 February for $100,000. Following on from the successful staging of the tournament in a pro-am format, the Mercedes-Benz Truck and Bus Victorian PGA Championship allows amateurs the chance to play in a PGA Tour of Australasia tournament alongside the Professionals and on the famed Melbourne Sandbelt.

    The European Tour will be making a much anticipated return to West Australian soil for the fourth staging of the Perth International and in a new addition, the tournament will now be tri-sanctioned with the Asian Tour.

    Being played from the 25-28 February, the tournament’s move into the early parts of the Race to Dubai and PGA Tour of Australasia seasons is expected to see the Perth International attract a strong field of European and Australasian players looking to capitalise early in the year.

    The Perth International will be played for AU$1.75million which, along with the Australian PGA Championship, which is also co-sanctioned by the European Tour, makes it the equal richest prize purse currently on the PGA Tour of Australasia.

    From Perth, the PGA Tour of Australasia will jet back across Australia and the Tasman Sea to New Zealand for its major tournaments of the year.

    The Holden NZ PGA Championship will be played at Remuera Golf Club after the tournament’s successful return to Auckland this year. Professionals will be competing for NZ$125,000 from 5-8 March.

    The following week will see the prestigious BMW New Zealand Open being played in picturesque Queenstown. A highlight on the PGA Tour of Australasia schedule, the players thoroughly enjoy being welcomed back to The Hills and Millbrook Resort each year for the NZ$950,000 tournament. Also being played in a pro-am format, there is a bonus NZ$50,000 on offer for the team component of the tournament meaning total prize money on offer for the professionals reaches NZD$1,000,000.

    Rounding out the early part of the 2016 schedule is the Coca-Cola Queensland PGA Championship which will be played at the City Golf Club in Toowoomba from 17-20 March for $125,000.

    The second half of the 2016 PGA Tour of Australasia season will be announced next year.
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    Queenslanders lead after R2

    On a difficult day which saw no player break par, Queenslander Louis Dobbelaar has extended his lead to five shots after the second round of the 2015 Srixon International Sub Junior Classic at Stonebridge Golf Club. 

    The 14 Year Old's up and down round of 73 included 2 eagles, 3 birdies, 3 bogey's, 1 double and 1 triple!! He now leads Liam Kennewell by five strokes, after the South Australian stayed in the hunt with a three over par 75. Defending champion Cooper Geddes (WA) remains in contention for back to back titles, one shot further back after also shooting a third round 75 and he sits one clear of the leading New South Welshman Harrison Crowe (St Michael's).

    The Girls Division looks destined to go to an Interstate Competitor, with the top five girls on the leaderboard from outside New South Wales. Joy Mannix (Qld) joined Kathryn Norris (WA) on top of the leaderboard on a difficult day where only three girls broke 80. Mannix fired a 78, one better than Norris' 79, whilst Maddison Hinson-Tolchard (WA) moved into third after a round of the day 77. READ MORE

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    Proverbs, Pilon, and Morgan champions at Gary Player Classic

    Blake Proverbs, Charles Pilon and Jediah Morgan have won their respective age divisions of the Gary Player Classic at Pacific Golf Club, held from 22-25 September. 

    The 15 Years and Under Division was dominated by Jediah Morgan (Hattonvale GC) over three rounds. After a promising four-under start with 68, he followed with rounds of 76, 74, and 78 which was enough for a comfortable six shot victory over state team member Louis Dobbelaar (Royal Queensland). The 72 hole Nett winner was Hyin Ho Cho with 309 (Sanctuary Cove).

    The 16-17 Years division was won by Charles Pilon (Hills) with Steven Cox (Wantima) firing back in the last round but unable to bridge the gap. Pilon held a strong lead throughout the tournament with rounds of 69, 70, and 72 despite finishing with a shaky 76 (287). Cox fought back on the final day with 69 to be the eventual runner-up, finishing the tournament with 290. The 72 Hole Nett winner was Riley Todd (Burleigh) with 285.

    The final hole proved to be the decider in the 18-20 Years division with a close battle between local hope Blake Proverbs (Pacific) and last year’s winner Daniel Gale (Castle Hill).  After a fierce battle, Proverbs was able to secure the win with par on the 18th, while Gale finished with a bogey. Proverbs returned scores of 71, 72, 71 and 72 to finish 287, nine shots clear of third. The 72 Hole Nett winner was Jordan Mcdonald (Pelican Waters) with 298.

    Each divisional winner and runner-up took home a high-class Adina time piece, proudly donated by long term sponsors Bob Menzies from Adina Watches. 

    Gary Player is also to be thanked for his 44th year of continued support, with 41 of those years held at the magnificently presented Pacific Golf Club.

    Each year Pacific Head Professionals Paul Hazlett and Mark Victorsen donate a prize for the Most Improved Player which was first won by Greg Norman in 1973.  This year’s winner was Redcliffe Member Tyler Duncan. In comparison to last year’s efforts Duncan improved his three round total by 21 strokes and also made the cut for this year’s event.

    For full results, visit

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    Heaps of holiday fun at the MyGolf camp at Dalby

    Fifty-eight youngsters from Dalby and surrounding districts enjoyed a fun-filled MyGolf Camp on September 21-22.

    For the kids aged five to 12 years it was a ripping way to start the school holidays.

    Dalby Golf Club was the venue for the fifth MyGolf Camp facilitated this year by Golf Queensland’s participation and development manager Lee Harrington. Earlier camps in 2015 were held at Emerald, Mareeba, Ayr and Tambo.

    “We target children in the MyGolf age span of five to 12 years in regional areas,’’ said Lee. “Golf Queensland brings in coaches who work with the local professional or community coaches in the area.

    “It is something the golf clubs can take hold of and they can plan a format to suit their facilities.’’

    Lee works with a maximum of 15 students to one coach and was assisted at Dalby by fellow PGA members Scott Simons (from Junior Golf Queensland), Neville Austin and local club pro Heath Garvey.

    Simons arranged for an array of second-hand golf clubs and used balls to be taken to Dalby and distributed at the camp.

    “About half the group of 58 at Dalby were existing juniors and the others were new to golf,’’ said Lee.

    “We include a lot of fun and games during the time we spent teaching the fundamental skills of the game. Then each afternoon we go out on the golf course to give the kids further education and a taste of the game.’’

    The MyGolf camp concept is now in its third year in Queensland after the success of an inaugural camp at Tambo in the central-west.

    “I think we had about 40 at the first camp and everybody camped on site at the Tambo Golf Club,’’ recalled Lee. “We had kids from places like Ilfracombe and Muttaburra and had barbecues at night with everyone involved. It was a lot of fun.

    “Every place we’ve been has been a success. The product is very good ...”

    Local businessman James Golder, who owns Golders menswear stores in country Queensland, was an enthusiastic sponsor of the Dalby camp and had support from Dalby GC’s junior committee and club pro Heath Garvey.

    “When I go out west or up north it reinforces what a perfect concept the MyGolf Camps are to introduce and encourage youngsters to enjoy the game,’’ said Lee Harrington.

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    Round 2 wrap – Gary Player Classic

    Wet conditions in the afternoon proved to be challenging for golfers during Round 2 of the Gary Player Classic.

    Local hope Blake Proverbs (Pacific) is currently leading the 18-20 category, finishing one-over for the day after starting with an eagle and birdie. Indooroopilly member Chris Crabtree is in hot contention and tied for first after shooting 75, following his three-under round yesterday (144). Jordan Mcdonald (Pelican Waters) trails by one shot (145), after shooting today’s best round of two-under.

    Charles Pilon continues his domination in the 16-17 years category firing a round of two-under, leading the field with 139. Dylan Gardner (Kilcoy GC) follows with 143, with a three-way tie for third place (147) between Douglas Klein (Redcliffe), Josh Armstong (Lakes) and Tom Harvey (Hills).

    Yesterday’s under-15 division leader Jed Morgan (Hattonvale) remains steady in first place after a round of four-over today to be leading with 144. Zachary Maxwell of Virginia is in second place with 149, followed by Phuripon Namkang (Hills) with 151.

    Best score of the day was two-under the card belonging to Charles Pilon (Southport), Jordan Mcdonald (Pelican Waters), and Daniel Gale (Castle Hill CC).

    Play continues tomorrow morning commencing at 6.45am.  CLICK HERE for round 3 draw.

    Photos from Round 2 are available on the Golf Queensland Facebook Page.

    The Gary Player Classic is a 72 hole stroke-play event held from Tuesday 22nd to Friday 25th September 2015, with 18 holes to be played each day.

    The Classic is open to all male amateur golfers who have not attained the age of 21 years, as at Tuesday 22nd September 2015, with an Australian handicap and who are members of a golf club affiliated through their District Golf Association with Golf Queensland, or other State/National Associations.

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    Green has Aussies on track

    Hannah Green (pictured) has propelled Australia to a promising start at the World Junior Girls’ Championship in Canada.

    The Perth star threatened to leave the field in her wake early in her round at The Marshes Golf Club, near Ottawa, but a couple of late three-putts cooled her down as she finished even par and tied fourth, just two behind Korean leader Hye-jin Choi.

    Becky Kay fought back well after an opening double-bogey to finish at two over, while fellow Queenslander Karis Davidson battled gamely to finish four over.

    The best two scores left Australia at two over after day one, tied sixth in the team event and just four back from the Koreans.

    Green, a member of the Golf Australia national squad, began solidly enough with par on the 10th hole, but peeled off four consecutive birdies from there to roar to the lead at four under.

    But as the wind picked up late in the afternoon, the scoring conditions became increasingly difficult and the Mount Lawley member’s triple-bogey six on the 8th – her second-last hole – was the key factor in dropping her out of the red numbers.

    “Unfortunately on the eighth I found water and three-putted for triple, but besides that I was happy with my round,” Green said. 

    “I played really well on the first five holes but then had a couple of three-putts after nine. 

    “Overall I putted pretty solid though and holed some crucial putts.

    “The winds picked up for my back nine which made it harder to score.”

    Kay, of Coolangatta-Tweed, had an erratic round, but showed flashes of brilliance in making five birdies that should stand her in good stead as the four-round event continues.

    Davidson, of Sanctuary Cove, hit the ball better than her score indicated and remains confident of a better score tomorrow.

    Australia should enjoy the calmer conditions of the morning tomorrow, off the first tee at 8.33am, Ontario time, in the second round.
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    Round 1 wrap – Gary Player Classic

    Jed Morgan (Hattonvale) has kicked started his campaign after shooting the best round of the day with a 4 under 68 including seven birdies to lead the Gary Player Classic in the under 15 division. Nick Schneider (Lakelands) is two shots back after shooting a 70 for his first round.

    There are three tied in the 16-17 category all at 3 under (69) Charles Pilon (Hills) who is last year’s 15 and under category winner, Tom Harvey (Cromer) and Jack Pountney (Coffs Harbour).

    Chris Crabtree (Indooroopilly) leads by 2 in the 18 to
    20 year old category with 3 under (69) from Hyunsik Kong (Emerald Lakes), Futa Yamagishi (Hills) and local hope Blake Proverbs (Pacific) who had 4 under on his final nine holes after being 3 over to start.

    Competitors from QLD, NSW, VIC, WA, Malaysia will tee it up for round 2 from
    6:25am Wednesday. Click here for the draw.

    The Gary Player Classic is a 72 hole stroke-play event held from Tuesday 22nd to Friday 25th September 2015, with 18 holes to be played each day.

    The Classic is open to all male amateur golfers who have not attained the age of 21 years, as at Tuesday 22nd September 2015, with an Australian handicap and who are members of a golf club affiliated through their District Golf Association with Golf Queensland, or other State/National Associations.

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    Eye injury sounds safety warning

    A serious eye injury from a driving range accident on the Gold Coast has urged Golf Queensland's Chief Executive Officer Lindsay Ellis to remind all golfers to be continually aware of their surroundings.

    Cooper Wallace, the younger brother of boom Broncos forward Jarrod Wallace, has lost his right eye after being struck in the face by an errant golf ball at a golf driving range on the Gold Coast. But while he lost his eye, 16-year-old Cooper was lucky he didn’t lose his life.

    He and his mates were at the driving range having some good clean fun when Cooper innocently bent down to pick up a tee. At that exact time a mate teed off, and the ball smashed into his right eye from close range.

    “Without sounding too dramatic, a golf ball struck at around 200 kilometres an hour – which would be the average speed from a driver – is actually a lethal weapon,” he said.

    “Obviously, on the golf course, the vast majority of golfers keep their wits about them and are aware of getting into positions where they might strike someone, or be hit by a ball themselves. But this accident is a reminder that we can never be too careful.”

    Doctors have said that had the ball that struck Cooper been a mere two millimetres further from his eye, he would have been hit in the temple and almost certainly have died.

    However the damage was such that Cooper has lost his eye and a prosthetic replacement has recently been fitted.

    And according to Jarrod, who has backed the calls by Mr Ellis for golfers to be diligent, if any member of the family was to suffer a serious facial injury at sport it would more than likely be him.

    “Playing at NRL level, the family was always worried about me being the one getting hurt,” he said.

    “In fact one of my teammates, Josh McGuire, now has a detached retina from a poke in the eye playing footy. And he is lucky he hasn’t lost the sight in his eye.

    “But this injury to Cooper is a reminder that we can never be too careful, irrespective of where we are and what we are doing. For a lot of us golf is a game we play for fun, but we need to be aware that it can also be dangerous if we aren’t constantly aware of those around us.”

    Mr Ellis said there were no hard and fast rules about safety on the golf course, but using common sense was a good place to start.

    “Never stand in front of someone when they are hitting the ball – that is a fairly stock-standard imperative to assure your safety,” he said.

    “And when you are about to hit, make sure no-one is too close to you. But generally, when out of the golf course or at a driving range, keep your wits about you and always consider where other people are.”

    Club golfers are covered under the Golf Australia personal liability insurance, which is part of the player benefits association with their capitation fee. Read more.

    An appeal has been established to help raise funds to cover the medical expenses for Cooper’s prosthetic eye, which will need to be replaced every couple of years. Click here to the appeal link

    Story by Tony Durkin
    • Cooper Wallace with his elder brother Jarrod, a Broncos NRL player
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    Choi too good in Katherine Kirk Classic

    This year’s Katherine Kirk Classic was held at the newly opened Maroochy River Golf Club on the Sunshine Coast. Cradled within viewing distance of magnificent and distinctive Mt Coolum the stunning Graham Marsh-designed championship course stood up to the test.

    This year it was Queensland State Team member Robyn Choi (RACV Royal Pines) who took home the title after running away with the lead from day one. She finished 8 shots clear of Yurim Chin (Hills International).

    Choi shot an impressive score of 212 (-4) in what was at times tough conditions with players navigating strong winds and coastal showers over the three-day tournament. But the final round score of 69 (-3) proved Choi was in form to take out the overall title and add her name to the Katherine Kirk Classic trophy.

    In the under 21 section of the event Jiwon Jeon (Hills International) claimed the top spot with a 54-hole total of 217 after shooting an impressive 67 (-5) on the final day of play, this was the lowest round for the tournament and a new course record.

    The 15-year-old and under category was won by Min Kweon (Sanctuary Cove) with a total of 225 for the three-day stroke play. 

    Proudly sponsored by Queensland’s very own professional golfer, Katherine Kirk, the 54-hole stroke play Championship has been a stepping stone for many of the state’s best golfers including Amy Yang who won the title back in 2005 and is now ranked in the world’s top 10.

    For all the results click here

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    Choi extends lead in Round 2 at Katherine Kirk Classic
    Queensland State Team member Robyn Choi has extended her lead in the 2015 Katherine Kirk Classic at the completion of the second round at Maroochy River Golf Club with a two round total of 143 (-1).

    Choi (RACV Royal Pines) shot an impressive score of even par (72) in tough conditions which had players navigating strong winds and coastal showers throughout the morning.

    With three holes to play Choi had a chance of recording a new course record as she was two under par for the day, but bogies on 16 and 18 meant that this was not to be.

    Two players are eight shots back from Choi, local Danika Coyne (Maroochy River Golf Club) and Yurim Chin (Hills) who both sit on a two round total of 151 (+7).

    In the under 21 section of the event Sheridan Gorton (Murwillumbah Golf Club) and Jiwon Jeon (Hills) are tied on a 36 hole total of 150 (+6) which will ensure a shoot-out in the third and final round of Classic.

    For all round two scores and the round 3 draw please click here.
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    2015 Gertrude McLeod Winners Event

    Melita Smith (Pine Rivers), Trish Harris (Laidley) and Susan Ogden (Wantima) have won their respective divisions at the 2015 Gertrude McLeod Winners Event at Caloundra Golf Club

    In Division 1 (handicaps 0-22.4) Melita Smith fired a brilliant nett round of 71 to beat runner up Helen Wastell (Rockhampton) on a count back after she also returned a nett 71. 

    The Division 2 category (handicaps 22.5-32.4) was won by Trish Harris (Laidley) after she fired a consistent nett 77.  Margaret Cronin (Wynnum) finished runner up after returning a nett round of 78.

    Wantima member Susan Ogden won Division 3 (handicap 32.5-45.4) by a single shot after she fired a nett 74 on the Caloundra layout.  Olivia Evans (Wynnum) was runner up in Division 3 after a score of nett 75.

    The Wantima Golf Club Team members of Vicki Staples, Wendy O’Connell and Susan Ogden combined to win the aggregate nett teams event.

    The Gertr
    ude McLeod Winners event is the finale of the Club Level Gertrude McLeod Qualifier Competition, where Club winners are invited to play in their relevant division in a State Final.

    Congratulations to all the players and winners.

    Results available

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    Golf Queensland Congratulates World No. 1 Jason Day
    Golf Queensland chairman Peter Castrisos echoed the sentiments of the golfing community in congratulating Jason Day and his World number 1 ranking.

    “All of Australia must be proud of Jason who has just achieved the highest honours,’’ said Mr Castrisos.

    “Day has endured a rollercoaster few months as a golfer and his win at the BMW Championships to secure the number one spot is inspirational.

    “Jason is a wonderful role model for all golfers and given the incredible talent in world golf it is a remarkable achievement to be crowned number 1.

    “Queensland has an impressive roll call of number 1 golfers including Greg Norman and Adam Scott and we are thrilled Jason is now also part of that history,” Mr Castrisos said.

    Day was a member of the Golf Queensland state junior and senior teams during his amateur days and turned professional in 2006.
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    The Don continues Day of achievements for Jason

    Australia's Jason Day will remember this day for a long time to come being nominated for the prestigious Don Award by the Sport Australia Hall of Fame at the same time as achieving his lifelong dream of becoming the Number 1 golfer in the world.

    Each year the Sport Australia Hall of Fame award The Don, widely regarded as Australia's leading contemporary sporting award, to the athlete or athletes who through their performance and example over the past year have most inspired the nation.

    One of 12 finalists Jason Day epitomises the traits with which The Don is awarded. It is also fitting that the nomination is announced the same day he becomes number one in the world.
    "To be nominated for The Don is an honour truly befitting Jason Day," said Brian Thorburn, CEO of the PGA of Australia.
    "On the golf course Jason's achievements this year have been incredible, winning his first Major and achieving his childhood dream of being the number one golfer in the world, these alone entitle him to being recognised as one of Australia's greatest sportsman."

    "However it is the way in which Jason conducts himself off the golf course and so proudly flies the Australian flag around the world which make him truly deserving. His determination, graciousness and fighting spirit are traits which make him a wonderful ambassador for Australian golf and sport on the world stage."

    Long touted as Australian golf's most exciting prospect, Jason Day has lived up to the weight of a nation's expectation in 2015 winning his first Major title at the PGA Championship.

    But this year has been about so much more than his Major victory and four other PGA TOUR wins, Day inspired a nation as be bravely pushed through a severe case of vertigo which saw him collapse on course at the US Open during the third round.

    Showing mental toughness and determination, qualities that are now his trademark, Day went onto finish tied 9th.

    Made to perform on the world's biggest stages, Day also finished tied fourth at The Open at St Andrews, the home of golf, and just one shot outside of a playoff which included fellow Australian Marc Lieshman.

    On a personal level, Day is much admired by golf fans and fellow competitors for his close knit team which includes his coach and caddy, PGA Professional Col Swatton who has mentored Day since his father passed away when he was just 12 years of age.

    A true family man, Day is never far away from his wife Ellie and son Dash and while many fans would love to see him competing in Australia this year as the PGA Champion, he has put his family first and will remain in America with his wife who is due to give birth to their second child in November.

    If Jason Day were to win The Don, to be announced on Wednesday 21st October, he would become the second golfer to receive the prestigious honour. Adam Scott was the 2013 recipient after becoming the first Australian to win The Masters.

    Story Credit: PGA Australia

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    Day's triumphal march to No.1

    Jason Day is the world's No. 1 player for the first time.

    The man from
    Queensland cruised to a five stroke victory at the BMW Championship in Chicago today to leapfrog Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth at the top of the rankings, achieving a lifelong dream. It is his fourth win in six tournaments.

    Ultimately, it was relatively stress-free for Day, almost anti-climactic considering the gravity of the moment. There was no exclamation point, no holed-out wedge or drained 10-metre putt.

    All the work had been done on the opening two days of the BMW Championship with incredible rounds of 61 and 63, followed by a smooth third-round 69. So Day earned himself a triumphal march through the final round to the world No. 1 ranking having started the week at a career-high No. 3.

    He is just the third of his countryman to reach the landmark. Only Greg Norman and Adam Scott have done it before him among Australians, although Karrie Webb would surely have led the women's rankings early in her great career had they existed at the time.

    Day would shoot 69 with conservative play today. There was no need for heroics in his eyes, when you start with a six-shot lead. He kept hitting greens and two-putting, waiting for someone to challenge him. But the threats never emerged.

    At the par-five eighth he took his first birdie after a nice pitch, then he gave back a shot with a three-putt at the ninth, a moment that might have been worse. But each time he showed any sign of wobbling, he steadied.

    At the 12th, the Australian made a great par-save after chunking a fairway bunker shot so that he was well short of the green in regulation. He needed to make a putt from two metres to keep his card in order; he did it, comfortably.

    American Rickie Fowler made a run, then faltered. Daniel Berger pulled within four on the back nine, but could not sustain it. They all ran out of holes, and at the par-four 16th, Day put the hammer down. After getting lucky with his pulled tee shot and finding a decent lie, he hit a short iron to the fringe, just five metres left of the cup, and buried the birdie putt, finishing with a fist pump that said he knew he was home now, his lead back to five shots.

    Day wins $US 1.485 million for his win in the third of four playoff tournaments to conclude the PGA Tour season, and his season earnings have passed $US9 million.

    It is his fourth win in his past six tournaments, a stretch in which he also secured his first-ever major victory, the US PGA Championship.

    And he still has the season-ending Tour Championship in Atlanta this week, where only the top 30 will play and the FedexCup bonus of $US10 million is on the line. He will go into that tournament ranked on top of the points list, knowing that a win guarantees him the outrageous bonus pool; even a top three finish could be enough, depending on what the other top-ranked players do.

    As a teenager gave an interview in 'Golf Digest' in which he said he wanted to usurp Tiger Woods, become world No. 1. He was criticised for this at the time, but no one is questioning him right now. Day had a dream, and today it materialised.

    Of the other Australians, Steven Bowditch closed with a 66 to secure his spot in the field for the Tour Championship in Atlanta next week. It will be Queenslander Bowditch's first appearance in the season-ending tournament, a tribute to his great 2015. Sydneysider Matt Jones also had a good day, carding a 67, but narrowly missed the field for Atlanta, finishing just outside the top 30 on the Fedex Cup points list.


    Won: Canadian Open, PGA Championship, Barclays Championship, BMW Championship
    Prizemoney: $US 9,174,000
    Majors: Masters T28, US Open T9, Open Championship T4, PGA Championship 1.
    Fedex Cup ranking: 1
    World ranking: 1

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    Choi leads Katherine Kirk Classic after Round 1
    Robyn Choi (RACV Royal Pines) leads the 2015 Katherine Kirk after equalling the Maroochy River Golf Club Course Record of 71 (-1) (yellow tees) in blustery conditions on the Sunshine Coast.

    Choi’s only blemish for the day was a triple bogey on the 14th hole where she found trouble in a number of ways, firstly hitting her drive in the water and then accidently moving her ball later on the hole incurring a penalty. The eventual seven brought her back to even par for the day, however a late birdie on the par 5 17th hole meant that her round finished deservingly under par for the day.

    The nearest local player is Danika Coyne (Maroochy River Golf Club) who opened with a round of 75 (+3) to be 4 shots back from Choi.

    In the Under 21 section of the Championship, Sheridan Gorton (Murwillumbah) shot a 75 (+3) and leads Jiwon Jeon (Hills) who had a 77 (+5).

    For all the scores from round 1 and the draw for round 2 please click here
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    Jordan reaches new heights

    Damien Jordan has today taken a further step forward in his golfing career, taking out the 2015 bmag Week of Golf and more importantly the 250,000 frequent flyer points.

    After starting the final round at the Indooroopilly Pro-Am today one shot behind Brett Rankin, Jordan laid down the challenge, firing a two under par 70, for a 13 under par total.  Unfortunately for Rankin a one over par 73 wouldn’t be good enough to claim the back-to-back titles Rankin was seeking, finishing two strokes behind Jordan.

    The timing couldn’t be better for Jordan, with a number of PGA Tour of Australasia tournaments beginning over the next few weeks. “The win here in the
    bmag Week of Golf will not only build my confidence heading into the next few months, but more importantly assist me with my travel,” said Jordan.

    “This week has been one of the best weeks of my short professional career. I really can’t thank the sponsors, Virginia, Victoria Park and Indooroopilly Golf Club as well as
    bmag enough, as without their support, I wouldn’t be finding myself in this position. The win this week will now allow me to compete at the Asian Qualifying School next year, opening the door to the possibility of competing regularly on an international tour.”

    While Jordan was excepting the spoils of his win in the
    bmag Week of Golf, Indooroopilly Golf Club member Aaron Pike was also being applauded after taking out his home event, the  Coca-Cola Amatil Indooroopilly Pro-Am.

    With storms threatening, Pike fired a very impressive four under par 68 around the West course, to finish one shot ahead of the 2014 Sunshine Swing Order of Merit Champion Blake McGrory, with Jordan and Ben Clementson finishing in a tie for third.

    "The last few months have all been about building my game ahead of the PGA Tour of Australasia tournaments later in the year, so it’s nice to see that hard work paying off,” said Pike.

    “My round today was no doubt based on local knowledge, as knowing where you can and can’t miss it around the greens vital to a good round on the West Course. It’s always great to win in front of friends at your home club and luckily for me, my round today was good enough for the win.”

    Professionals will now enjoy a few days off before the Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series Sunshine Swing heads south. Five events will be played across Northern New South Wales next week, starting with the Lismore Pro-Am on Sunday.

    The Sunshine Swing forms part of the Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series which comprises of 200 events Australia wide.

    Played across more than 170 golf courses around Australia, the Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series plays an important part in the development of Australia’s Professional Golfers whilst also growing the game at a grass roots level by engaging an estimated 48,000 amateur golfers each year.

    For all the results from the
    bmag Week of Golf and Indooroopilly Pro-Am, please click here.

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    Grosvenor wins the 2015 Queensland Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship

    Keperra member Ashley Grosvenor has won the 2015 Queensland Men's Mid-Amateur Championship at RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast.

    Grosvenor opened the week with an even par round 72 on the first day, to place himself in the top five players. Grosvenor was one of only four players to shoot even par or better in the opening round. A two-under round of 70 on the second day was enough to secure his spot in the final lead group.

    Commencing the final round with a single shot lead from first round leader Lindsay Ross (Palmer Gold Coast), Grosvenor fired three bogies’ and one birdie on the front nine with five consecutive pars on the back.   After a double bogey on the Par-4 fifteenth and two additional bogies on the closing three holes Grosvenor was fortunate enough to hang on for a final round of six-over par 78 to finish with 220 (+4) for the Championship.

    Mark Boulton (Phillip Island) was a single shot back in second place on 221 (+5) after a closing round of three-over par 75. This followed his opening round of 71 (-1) and second round of 75 (+3).

    Scott Draper (Keperra) finished on 223 (+7) to secure third place.

    As part of Srixon's support of the Championship, each player was invited to receive a dozen Z-Star Golf Balls and compete in a separate nett event. Lindsay Ross from Palmer Gold Coast was extremely excited to have made this decision as it led to him winning the Srixon 54 Hole Challenge. Ross shot nett rounds of 68, 73 and a final day nett 81 to take home a year's supply (12 x 12 dozen boxes) of Srixon Z Star Balls. Ross was one of 143 players that chose to play the Sri
    xon ball at this year's championship.

    In the Upper Mid-Amateur Division (44-54 years) Robert Martin (Royal Pines) finished on 225 (+9). Martin was able to hole out his second shot on the Par 5 18th for an Albatross and edge out Emerald Lakes Golf Club member Gary Bruyers after he finished runner up on 228 (+12).

    In the Srixon Teams event section, it was a close battle between Mackay and Keperra Golf Club. The eventual winners were the team from Mackay comprising of Calvin Buckton, Shane Page and Michael Neaton. The winning Aggregate Nett score left them with a four shot win over the Keperra Golf Club team which comprised of Mark Draper, Ashley Grosvenor and Scott Draper.

    The Srixon NTP Challenge was held on the Monday afternoon. Each player had one attempt at a 60m pitch shot from the clubhouse to the practice green. After numerous close shots from competitors, the eventual winner was Gavin Young of Pacific Golf Club. Gavin's great pitch resulted in him winning a Srixon Prize Pack.

    It was the fourth time the Queensland Men's Mid-Amateur Championship has been hosted by RACV Royal Pines Resort. With a field of 168 players and the fantastic feedback received over the three days, it is certain to be "must play" event in 2016.

    Stay tuned for the wrap up footage, coming soon.

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    Wools-Cobb extends Queensland's winning run

    “shocked” Shae Wools-Cobb has outlasted the field to win the Mandurah Amateur by a single shot at Mandurah Country Club in Western Australia.

    After sharing the lead with WA's Min Woo Lee after 18 holes, Wools-Cobb entered this morning’s third round seven shots behind the leading Lee.

    But an eight shot swing saw Wools-Cobb back on top of the leaderboard to start the afternoon round, this time in his own right.

    Wools-Cobb never relinquished his lead over the final 18 holes, despite starting, and finishing the final round with a single stroke advantage.

    Finishing second was WA’s Curtis Luck, who went seven under over the final day, and Troy Moses of NSW who fell just short despite being within a couple shots throughout the afternoon.

    WA’s Fred and Min Woo Lee shared more than just a last name, finishing fourth on 5-under par.

    Fred Lee shot the best score of the final round with a 5-under 66, while Min Woo Lee faded on the final day with closing rounds of 75 and 72.

    It’s the first National Rankings win for Wools-Cobb, extending a winning run for Golf Queensland after Blake Proverbs emerged victorious on the eve of the Mandurah Amateur at the Thailand Amateur Open.

    “When I heard Blake won I was rapt as we’re close mates, it really made me want to get the win here to keep it going.

    It’s been a good week for us with (Queensland's) Gennai Goodwin finishing 2
    nd in Thailand as well.”

    The Queenslander’s win was set up by an outstanding opening round of 67 in blustery conditions. Wools-Cobb drew a parallel to his opening round 69 at the 2015 Australian Amateur.

    “Both of those rounds had really rough conditions, so I seem to do well when it’s windy.

    I don’t hit a very high ball, so the wind doesn’t affect me as much. But I also putted really well this week – I don’t think I missed anything inside 5 feet.”

    To Shae, his afternoon was made easier by avoiding the lead group despite leading, thanks to the final round being seeded on the scores after 36 holes.

    With his partners out of contention, and the roaming leaderboard mostly out of the way, Shae was able to concentrate on his game instead of being caught up in the battle for first.

    Wools-Cobb did such a good job of keeping his eyes down, he didn’t realise he was still leading until the until the last two holes.

    “It was a bit of a grind out there. 
    I didn’t really know what the other guys were doing, because I never looked at the scoreboard until the 17th hole– so it was good for me as I wasn’t trying to push for birdies.

    I was avoiding (the leaderboard), really. I just wanted to play my best and see what happens instead of getting worried about the result.”

    With this win, an excited Wools-Cobb will return to WA in November with an exemption to the 2015 Nexus Risk Services WA Open at Royal Fremantle.

    “Playing the WA Open would be awesome! I’ve played the Queensland open twice, and had a good finish in the first year. I’d be keen to come back here and play against a professional field.”

    Wools-Cobb will start his celebrations by responding to the messages piling up on his phone, as well as post to on his facebook page which has growing base that has just recently over 600 fans.

    “A friend of ours said I should make a page so family and friends would know how I was going in all of my events – I will be good to post a win on there tonight!”

    Story Credit: Golf Australia

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    Day requests Aussie fans' understanding

    Newly crowned US PGA champion Jason Day has asked Aussie fans to understand why he’s not returning home to contest the Emirates Australian Open.

    Day became just the 11th Australian male to win a major with his two-shot victory last month at Whistling Straits.

    And with interest in the 27-year-old Queenslander at an all-time high, he hopes Aussie golf fans will accept his decision to remain in the United States as he and wife Ellie prepare for their second child due in November.

    “I don’t feel as though I am under any pressure to return to Australia given I won the PGA Championship and really I am just hoping everyone back home will understand my situation,” Day said.

    “I just want to make sure I am there for Ellie and that she has my support when she has our second child (a brother or sister to three-year-old Dash).

    “Australia is a great sporting nation and I know only too well how much they love their champions and while I may not be back home competing this year, I am far from done in terms of seeking to win the Australian Open, the Australian PGA or the Australian Masters.

    “They’re the events every Australian-born golfer would love to win in their career and I’m no different.

    “So while I won’t be competing in the Australian Open later this year, I am hoping that I will have many more Australian Opens ahead of me in my career.”

    Day last competed in Australia when he shared sixth place behind Rory McIlroy in the 2013 Australian Open at Royal Sydney Golf Club.

    A week earlier he had teamed with Adam Scott as Australia won the World Cup of Golf at Royal Melbourne where Day won the individual title.

    He had been scheduled to join Scott, McIlroy and eventual champion Jordan Spieth in last year’s Australian Open but withdrew with a back injury.

    Day has since charged up the world rankings to a career-high No.3 and is within range of No.1 should he have a victory in the coming weeks.

    Day already tops the US PGA Tour’s FedEx Cup standings with victory, his fourth of the year, in the Barclays Championship in New Jersey last month.

    Day maintained his lead in the playoffs despite finishing 12th last week at the Deutsche Bank Championship near Boston.

    If Day maintains his top position over the remaining two events, he will become the first Australian  winner in the nine-year history of the FedEx Cup.

    And while he recently revealed he has been receiving regular text messages from long-time world No. 1 Tiger Woods, he’s also disclosed he’s been discussing their respective back complaints.

    “I’ve found myself grouped a few times of late with Tiger, including the first two rounds in The Open at St Andrews, and it's something we have discussed with him while we’ve walked the course,” Day said.

    “Tiger and I have talked about our back problems and it’s all part of the modern game we play.

    “Everyone nowadays seems to go at the golf ball so hard and (it) seems you are going to pick up niggling little injuries.

    “We’ve seen Tiger struggle a lot with a back injury, but like I said it all seems part of the modern game and modern swings everyone is adopting.”

    Story Credit: Golf Australia

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    Min Woo Lee six clear in Mandurah

    With one word, Min Woo Lee sent panic through the field during the second round at the Mandurah Amateur.

    When queried about his mid-round score, the Royal Fremantle member responded a single word -- "better" -- referring to yesterday's opening round 67.

    Twelve hours after his sister shot 68 to rise into the top-10 at the Evian Championship, the younger Lee sibling signed for a 6-under 65, shooting his first ever bogey free round and opening up a six stroke lead in the National Ranking event.

    With tight fairways, Mandurah Country Club creates a social atmosphere between groupings. This is especially on the tee of the par three 17
    th. As players wait for the group ahead to putt out, there’s an opportunity to chat to golfers passing by on adjacent fairways.

    It was here where word of Min Woo’s performance spread like wildfire.

    One rumour had Min Woo’s lead as high as nine, another said he saw Lee sink a putt from off the 17
    th green for birdie (he parred). One went as far to joke that Lee only had 10 putts for the day (he had 25).

    With Lee’s iron game on song, his putter stepped up to make the most of the opportunities.

    “Today they were just dropping. It felt similar to yesterday but today I gave myself more chances. I drove it a bit better too, but I felt like I was holing everything.”

    It’s a case of hard work paying off, with Lee focusing on his putting after attending last month’s Golf Australia junior camp on the Sunshine Coast.

    “At the GA camp they said that my putting wasn’t too good! So I’ve been practicing, working on my stroke and working on my pre-shot routine. So far it’s turning out well.”

    Overnight co-leader Shae Wools-Cobb couldn’t match his outstanding 4-under opening round, settling for a 1-over 72 in much calmer conditions.

    Fred Lee, who was third placed to start the day, also carded a 72 -- allowing Min Woo to put a sizeable distance between himself and the field.

    “Shae wasn’t having his best day, so I saw it as a chance to get myself as far apart from second place as I could.”

    In second and in ominous form is Brett Coletta, who fired a 5-under 66 in another bogey free round for the leading pair.

    Coletta is playing his first tournament since winning the US Amateur medal almost four weeks ago.

    An off-day could be excused in the Victorian’s return to competitive golf, especially in yesterday’s blustery conditions.

    But Coletta says he’s happy with how he has performed on both days, despite bettering his opening round score by six.

    “I wouldn’t say it was rust (in Round 1), it was more due the conditions.

    I played quite well but the difference was just on a couple of holes. I made a of couple errors with my distances, and the wind was very swirly which gave me some difficult up and downs.”

    “I was off to a good start today, and all I wanted was to be in a good position for tomorrow, which I’ve done. Some putts may not have gone my way but if I stay patient I’ll see how I go tomorrow.”

    Coletta and Lee were drawn together for the opening two rounds, and Coletta will have another 36 holes tomorrow to challenge the leader.

    “He (Lee) was just clinical today. He put on a great show on the greens and there was nothing I could do to put pressure on him. Tomorrow I’ll be looking to get off to a good start and then see how he reacts.”

    Behind the West Australian leader is a swathe of interstate players.

    Coletta holds outright second on 4-under with Queensland’s Shae Wools-Cobb and NSW’s Troy Moses a shot further back.

    Dale Brandt Richards (NSW) is the only remaining golfer under par on 1-under, with Victoria’s Andrew Schonewille, South Australia’s Jack Williams and Royal Perth’s Fred Lee even with the card.

    Cottesloe’s Curtis Luck and Victorian Kyle Michel round out the top 10 on 1-over par.

    Story Credit: Golf Australia

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    Proverbs storms home to win Thailand Amateur

    The 19-year-old, who was one shot off the pace after three rounds, made a late charge by sinking one eagle and five birdies for 278.

    Co-overnight leader Jun Ho Song of South Korea came in second after shooting a 67 for 279. Proverbs received the King Rama VII trophy at the oldest amateur golf event in the country. 

    “I am happy to win here. My [Thai] caddie helped me a lot because she can speak English,” said Proverbs, who is on his first visit to Thailand.

    The best Thai was first-round leader Napong Sriprasit who finished third on 280, one shot better than Gregory Foo of Singapore. 

    Rayhan John Thomas of the UAE was fourth on 284. Thanaphum Khanchitworakun, the other joint overnight leader, had a round to forget with a 78. The 19-year-old failed to make a single birdie and suffered six bogeys. He was tied for 11th. 

    In the women’s event, Aditi Ashok of India, 17, secured a wire-to-wire five-shot victory on 286. Chakansim Khamborn shared second place with Gennai Goodwin of Australia on 291 by five shots. 

    Story Credit: Bangkok Post 
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    Three Queenslanders in Presidents Cup Team

    Steven Bowditch has been rewarded for his watershed year with selection in the International team to contest the Presidents Cup in South Korea next month.

    It will be the first
    time Queenslander Bowditch, 32, has played in a Presidents Cup team.

    He was chosen as one of the two captain's picks nominated by International team captain Nick Price today, along with Korean 
    Sang Moon Bae, who will give the International team its only home-grown player (although Danny Lee, of New Zealand, was born in Korea).

    There are now four Australians -- Jason Day, Adam Scott, Marc Leishman and Bowditch -- in Price's team.

    United States team captain Jay Haas nominated his son Bill and veteran Phil Mickelson as his 11th and 12th players for the event at Jack Nicklaus Golf Club in Incheon from October 8.

    Bowditch won the Byron Nelson tournament on the US PGA Tour this year and is still competing in the tour playoffs with a strong chance to make the top 30 who will contest the Tour Championship in Atlanta.

    He missed automatic selection for the Presidents Cup in 2013 by a meagre .0098 
    points, and was not chosen as a captain's pick. At the time, he was 123rd in the world rankings, but now he is 55th.

    The Australian, who was 11th in the order of selection, said he was "lost for words'' at his selection.

    The Americans also chose their 11th-ranked player in Mickelson, who has been quiet of late, but captain Haas said it was an obvious selection. Mickelson has played all 10 previous Presidents Cups. "If anyone deserves a pick, it is Phil,'' said Haas.

    FINAL TEAMS: INTERNATIONAL -- Jason Day, Louis Oosthuizen (S Af), Adam Scott, Hideki Matsuyama (Japan), Branden Grace (S Af), Marc Leishman, Anirban Lahiri (India), Charl Schwartzel (S Af), Thongchai Jaidee (Thailand), Danny Lee (NZ), Steven Bowditch, 
    Sang Moon Bae (South Korea). USA -- Jordan Spieth, Bubba Watson, Jimmy Walker, Zach Johnson, Jim Furyk, Rickie Fowler, Dustin Johnson, Patrick Reed, Matt Kuchar, Chris Kirk, Phil Mickelson, Bill Haas.

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    PGA Legends retain Jack Brown Shield

    Senior Queensland PGA Professionals and their Golf Queensland counterparts went head to head today at Oxley Golf Club to contest the Jack Brown Shield - an annual match play event that sees Queensland PGA Legends take on the best of the Senior Golf Queensland team.

    The event is a popular one with both teams and promotes a strong sense of friendly rivalry.

    Now in its 11th year, the event honours popular PGA Member Jack Brown who was a formidable player in his day and also a great contributor to golf in Queensland.

    David Hando's won over Tim Deakin from Golf Queensland finishing 2UP after being 3 down after nine holes, while Tom Linskey from the PGA Team won his match 1UP on the last hole after holing out on second shot into the par 3 after nearly finishing out of bounds off the tee.

    At the end of the day it was the PGA Legends who proved victorious with a convincing score of 8 ½ to 1 ½, retaining the cup for a ninth time out of 11 contests.

    Story Credit: PGA

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    Cooper flies home to win

    Taylor Cooper has fired 3-under 69 to come from behind and win the 2015 Bundaberg Motor Group QLD PGA Championship.

    After finishing second behind Deyen Lawson in 2014, the tide turned this year when Cooper birdied two of the last four holes to claim the title.

    Heading into the final round three shots clear, Lawson had as much as a five shot lead throughout the final round before a double bogey on the 13th hole saw his lead start to diminish.

    Further mistakes for Lawson at the 14th and 16th opened the door to Cooper and when the Trainee Professional from Manly made a birdie on the 17th hole, he had hit the lead.

    Cooper hit his approach over the back of the green on the 18th hole, only to hole a 15 foot putt for par to shoot 69 and post a score of 1-under par for the tournament.

    This left the stage clear for Lawson who, after hitting his second shot on the par 4 18th to 12 feet, with a birdie opportunity to send the tournament to a playoff. 

    It wasn’t to be though with the putt narrowly sliding by and Cooper successfully avenging his 2014 runner-up finish.

    “Deyen and I have played together six or seven times in the final rounds of tournaments over the past three years and the rivalry has certainly pushed us both to be better players,” said Cooper.

    “The golf course this week played so different each day with the wind switching around, full credit to the ground staff here at Coral Cove. They have a gem of a golf course and the members should be privileged that they get to play it week in and week out.”

    The win is a big confidence boost for Cooper who is set to tee it up in the PGA Tour of Australasia and European Tour co-sanctioned Australian PGA Championship in December courtesy of winning PGA National Futures Championship last year.

    “This win means a lot to me personally. I have only just got married a few weeks ago and with a big end of the year coming up including an invitation into the Australian PGA Championship, I am looking forward to grabbing the opportunity with both hands,” added Cooper.

    For Lawson it was again a case of close but not close enough, when it comes to defending a title after he finished third at the NSW/ACT PGA Trainee Championship just a few weeks ago.

    “There is little doubt as to what I came to achieve this week and that was a win, but full credit to Taylor, his ability to hit the shot when he needed down the stretch today was very impressive,” said Lawson.

    Rounding out the podium finishes was Caboolture Trainee and last year’s QLD PGA Trainee of the Year Rick Coleman, his final round 1-under 71 saw him finish at 5-over the card.

    Tying Cooper for low round of the day was Elanora Country Club Trainee Campbell Quirk who moved up nine places today following his round of 3-under 69, finishing in a tie for fourth.

    The QLD PGA Trainees now set their sights on their next event at Carbrook Golf Club on the 14th September as preparations kick in for the PGA National Futures Championship at Ballarat Golf Club in October

    Final Results available here

    Story Credit: PGA Australia

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    Hart storms home at Redland Bay

    Storms couldn't prevent the Oldmac Mazda Redland Bay Pro-Am from going ahead in its first appearance on the Sunshine Swing since 2001.

    Heavy showers weren't enough to stop former Redland Bay Trainee Mitchell Jacobson, Luke Hickman and Damien Jordan in the morning field, with the three carding 4-under 68 to hold the clubhouse lead.

    However it was current MLC Advice Nundah Order of Merit leader Tim Hart who stole the day firing a 6-under 66 to take the title.

    "It wasn't easy out there today with the blustery winds, with shots requiring more attention than what they normally would," said Hart.

    "Patience was certainly the key to my win and has assisted in extending my lead in the race to the Order of Merit title."

    "Hopefully I can continue to put myself in contention in the up and coming events on the Sunshine Swing and hold onto the Order of Merit lead."   

    Professionals will now enjoy a break on the Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series Sunshine Swing, with the next event on the schedule being played at the Virginia Golf Club.

    The Virginia Pro-Am will also mark the start to the bmag Week of Golf, with the leading player across the Virginia, City of Brisbane and Indooroopilly pro-ams receiving a bonus of 250,000 frequent flyer points.

    Final leaderboard available here

    Story Credit: PGA Australia

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    Lawson’s lead continues

    First round leader Deyen Lawson has moved out to a six shot lead after an impressive second round score of 7-under 65 to lead with a combined score of 11-under at the 2015 BMG QLD PGA Trainee Championship.

    In near perfect weather conditions Lawson finished the front nine holes in 4-under opening with a birdie and then an eagle on the 3rd followed by another birdie on the 6th. The only blemish on his scorecard appeared when he bogeyed the par 4 11th.

    “The conditions were great with hardly any wind so I wanted to make the most with the opportunity,” said Lawson.

    “I just tried to remain patient throughout the round and I believe this helped me to scramble well and make the important putts.”

    The nearest competitor sitting six shots behind Lawson is NSW Trainee Aaron Glasson who finished with a 4-under 68, which was helped by a hole in one on the picturesque 2nd hole. Hitting a 7 iron into the 159m par 3, Glasson’s ball bounced once before dropping into the hole.

    “I thought I may have made an error in my club selection as it bounced once on the green and disappeared,” said the jubilant Glasson.

    “After first thinking it had run past I got excited by the reaction of the spectators near the green who were cheering.”

    Other players who moved into contention today were Taylor Cooper and Sunshine Coast Trainee Brad McLellan who both finished their rounds under par. Dane McArdle who was one shot behind Lawson after the first round is also amongst the leaders after an even par round of 72.

    Round three will commence at 7.00am tomorrow with the lead group teeing off at 9.50am and will see many players do their best to move to the top of the leaderboard and put themselves in contention for this year’s title.

    Round 2 results available here

    Photo Credit: PGA Australia

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    Strong national teams named

    A strong New South Wales contingent will form the backbone of Australia’s attempt at a Nomura Cup hat-trick.

    Sydney-based trio Cameron Davis, Harrison Endycott and Travis Smyth will be joined by in-form Victorian Ben Eccles in the Asia-Pacific teams championship in the United Arab Emirates next month.

    After a record 10th win in Thailand in 2013, Golf Australia high performance director Brad James is confident this team will acquit itself well in the biennial tournament.

    “This in an historic event in our region and we’ve enjoyed great success, particularly in recent years,” James said.

    “We have selected a team that’s in good form and we’re confident they’ll put in a strong performance under national coach Dean Kinney.”

    Two other Australian teams have been formalised with announcements for the World Junior Girls event in Canada and the Spirit International in the United States.

    Fresh from a bold runner-up showing in last week’s Asia-Pacific junior championship, Becky Kay will be joined by fellow Gold Coast youngster Karis Davidson and Perth’s Hannah Green at The Marshes Golf Club in Ottawa, Ontario.

    The young women will compete in the 18-and-under event in both team and individual strokeplay competitions in the Canadian capital from September 22.

    The Spirit, to be contested over three-rounds of fourball competition, will feature Queenslander Gennai Goodwin, Perth’s Minwoo Lee and Victorian pair Jo Charlton and David Micheluzzi.

    It will be held at the spectacular Whispering Pines Golf Club midway between Houston and Dallas in Texas from October 12 with the men’s event winner to gain a start at the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial Country Club on next year’s US PGA Tour.

    “It’s a busy representative period, but it provides a great opportunity for a number of our younger athletes to increase their international exposure,” James said.

    “All the athletes in Canada and the US have earnt their positions and will hopefully continue the roll of Australian golf in this North American summer.”

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    Inspired Trainees arrive at Coral Cove

    PGA Trainees have arrived at Coral Cove for the 2015 Bundaberg Motor Group Queensland PGA Trainee Championship and full of motivation on the back of Jason Day win at The Barclays morning,

    Now in its fifth year at Coral Cove Golf Club, the tournament is one of the highlights of the year for the next wave of PGA Professionals, with 67 Trainees hoping to aloft the Carnegie Clark Cup and a share in the $35,000 prize purse. 

    One  interstate player to watch this week is defending champion Deyen Lawson who won last’s year tournament by four shots.

    “2014 was by far my most successful as a professional and I am really pleased to be back to defend my title at Coral Cove. I really enjoy the golf course, it rewards the player who drives it straight and hopefully I can do that this week,” said Lawson.

    The strongest Queensland contenders include 2014 Queensland Trainee of the Year Rick Coleman as well as Ali Orchard who, after winning the Pampling Plate earlier this year, is looking to be the first female to win the tournament and one of the few PGA Trainees to win both the state match play and championship titles in the same year.

    “It would be a real honour to be able to say that I am the first female to win this event though there are plenty of good players here this week, both male and female, that are also looking to do so and therefore all I can do is give myself a chance come the back nine on Friday and see what happens,” said Orchard.

    The Coral Cove community will look to Caboolture Golf Club Trainee Ryan Norton who hails from the Bundaberg area and is looking to improve on his 21st position in 2014.

    “It is great to be home to see friends and family though my primary focus is to give myself a chance to win our State Championship. I know the course better than most of the other professionals. If I can execute my game plan, I would like to think I will have every chance to take out the title,” said Norton.

    The unique par 6, 12th hole at Coral Cove has already created interest amongst competitors and will play a significant part later in the week as to who climbs the leaderboard along with the other signature hole at Coral Cove Golf Club, the 203m par 3 2nd hole.

    Not only will trainee professionals be competing in the tournament, they will also be looking to leave their mark on the region by conducting a number of community activities throughout the week.

    A free ladies clinic will run on Tuesday at 3pm, as well as a free junior clinic on Wednesday at 3pm which will provide the ability to create more awareness of the game of golf in the local area.

    The first round will commence tomorrow morning at 7:00am in what is predicted to be sunny and calm conditions.

    Spectators are welcome to attend and witness the next generation of PGA Professionals tee it up.

    Photo: Deyen Lawson

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    Wright, Jeffress win at Maroochy River

    A suspension in play and having to return to the course early this morning to complete their first round was not enough to stop Michael Wright and Steven Jeffress from claiming the inaugural Maroochy River Pro-Am.

    Wright and Jeffress finished at 8-under, two shots clear of Troy Cox, who shot the round of the tournament today, a 7-under 65. 

    Both Jeffress and Wright along with the other 32 Professionals that played yesterday afternoon, had to return to the course at 6:00am this morning to finish their rounds, with Wright holding a two shot lead after a 66.

    Wright would return a 70 in today's second round, only to be joined shortly after by Jeffress with consecutive 68's.

    It has been a lean year for Wright, with his best finish on the Choice Hotels PGA Pro-Am Series Sunshine Swing coming at the Morobe Open back in April where he finished tied 4th.

    "Although it hasn't been one of best years on tour, my form has really been on the improve over the past two weeks culminating into a victory here today," said Wright.

    "There is no doubt my top-10 finish at last week's Queensland Open has helped me with my confidence, I'm feeling more comfortable and settled with my game on course.

    "Hopefully I can continue to build on this momentum heading into the remainder of the PGA Tour of Australasian season." 

    2015 has been slightly different for Jeffress though, and after winning for the fourth time this year, he finds himself moving into second place in the race for the Order of Merit title.

    "The form has been good of late and it's great to have continued it on here at Maroochy River," said Jeffress.

    "This course has been built to hold tournament golf, and it wouldn't surprise me if this tournament continues to grow into some big in the coming years. I feel privileged to have won the inaugural event and I look forward to returning in 12 month time to defend my title." 

    For many of the competing professionals, it was the very first time they had seen the Maroochy River layout, with the course only officially opening in June this year. Although the course is still very young, the Professionals could only praise the Graham Marsh designed course, with many of them looking forward to returning for the 2016 pro-am. 

    The Sunshine Swing will now head south, with the Riverlakes Pro-Am being played next Wednesday. More than 50 professionals will compete for the $11,000 in prizemoney, before the Sunshine Swing returns to the Redland Bay Golf Club for the first time since 2001.

    Related Links
    Scores / Maroochy River Pro-Am

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    Day takes top honours at The Barclays
    Jason Day’s magnificent winning streak has continued, with the Aussie favourite winning The Barclays at Plainfield Country Club this morning and his fourth win on the PGA TOUR this season.

    Day fired a bogey free final round of 8-under 62 to take out the first of the four FedEx Cup playoff events by six shots over Sweden’s Henrik Stenson.

    After starting the day tied for the lead with South Korea's Sangmoon Bae, Day set the pace early with two birdies in the first four holes, which moved the Queenslander to two shots clear of Bae who had succumbed to two early bogeys.

    Day entered the back nine with back-to-back birdies on the 10th and 11th which briefly moved him to four shots clear of Stenson.

    Stenson quickly mounted a challenged firing back-to-back birdies on the 13
    th and 14th but it was a case of too little too late as Day answered back, ending his round on 19-under.

    “To be able to play the way I did over the weekend was fantastic, today was just phenomenal golf,” said Day after his round.

    Day now replaces Jordan Spieth at number one in the FedExCup standings and joins an illustrious list of players to record four or more wins in a season, including Tiger Woods, Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy.

    “Together with the Australian golf community, I congratulate Jason on another hard-earned victory,” said Brian Thorburn, Chief Executive Officer of the PGA of Australia.

    “It’s always wonderful to see our Australian Professionals performing so well on the world stage and to see Jason’s highly successful season on the PGA TOUR continue is just fantastic.”

    Continue reading on to see how the other Australians performed.  
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    Junior champ wins at Headland

    World junior golf champion Ryley Martin has had a double dose of success in his first weekend back at his home course since winning overseas.

    Playing off scratch, Martin scorched around Headland Golf Club’s 18 holes in a three-under par 69 on Sunday to easily win the Schweppes Junior Classic, the day after claiming victory in the men’s foursomes’ championship. His superb round included five birdies and two bogeys, and it won him the scratch event by three shots from Mount Coolum pair Zach Quirk and Ryan Stephenson.

    Last month 17 year-old Martin scored the biggest win of his burgeoning career when he captured the Veritas World Junior 16-18 years competition in the US. But back on his home course on Saturday he teamed with former club champion David Rattray to put his name on Headland Golf Club’s foursomes’ championship trophy for the first time.

    The reining Headland junior champion and five-time foursomes’ finalist Rattray won by a single shot from the experienced pair of Aaron Shaw and Justin Nicholson. 

    Rattray and Martin are not the only Headland golfers celebrating this week. A single stableford score of 50 points from Graham Wilson is still being talked about.

    Wilson, who played off 34, had 24 and 26 points on the respective nines with nine three-point holes and three four pointers. But while delighted with the score, he said he was embarrassed by his handicap.

    “That is absolutely my best round ever. Hopefully there are more like that so I can reduce my handicap,” he said. 

    Story: Tony Durkin

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    Aussie PGA is just 100 days away!
    The countdown is on! There is just 100 days to go until the first ball is struck at the Australian PGA Championship on the Gold Coast with the PGA Tour of Australasia welcoming the European Tour to Aussie shores.

    On hand to launch the countdown to Australia’s richest tournament, WA PGA Champion Ryan Lynch, New Zealand Open Champion Jordan Zunic and former New Zealand Open Champion Jake Higginbottom were practicing their swing on the idyllic Gold Coast beaches.

    “It’s definitely one of the most beautiful destinations that I have hit a few golf balls, it was good fun down there with Ryan and Jordan, and hopefully it promotes the tournament well,” said Jake Higginbottom.

    While Ryan Lynch sang the praises of the Gold Coast, “I have played on the Gold Coast before and it’s one of the best places in Australia to hold a golf tournament, as far as locations go,” said Lynch.

    “I think the European Tour players will love the Gold Coast, I think anybody in the world would come and enjoy the Gold Coast and the beautiful beaches and the great scenery.”

    “I think we as Aussies take for granted how nice the beaches are in that part of the world.”

    In its first year as a co-sanctioned event on the European Tour, our Aussie young guns are gearing up for what promises to be a big Australian PGA Championship, it could be the tournament that sees one of them join the Race to Dubai.

    “I think every player on the PGA Tour of Australasia is looking forward to playing in a tournament co-sanctioned by a top tour in the world,” added Lynch.

    “You only need to look back as far as the co-sanctioned events with the Tour and see the success that grew for a lot of the players like Alistair Presnell and Steven Bowditch, the success they have had in the US because of those co-sanctioned events. I can only imagine this is going to do the same with the European Tour.”

    With Jake Higginbottom adding, “I guess everyone’s aim is to try and win, like with Jin Jeong winning the Perth International obviously it gives you good exemptions.”

    “It’s good to see a PGA Tour of Australasia member win a European Tour event, it gives you hope that you can do it as well.”

    One of the most recent rising stars to emerge on the PGA Tour of Australasia, New Zealand Open champion Jordan Zunic, is looking forward to measuring his game against some of Europe’s finest.

    “Obviously after I won in March it really did change my whole year and I’m just really happy that I have lots to play in this year and can keep developing my game by competing against really good players,” said Zunic, who prior to his victory would not have been exempt to compete in the Australian PGA Championship.

    “Just the opportunity to play a European Tour event, giving us the chance to play against some high ranked players and also playing for some pretty good qualifications like gaining status is incredible.”

    But not just an opportunity for our home grown talent it also opens up the Gold Coast to some of the best European and South African professionals to experience what Aussie golf has to offer.
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    Sunshine Coast Academy launched

    With the financial assistance of sponsor Ramsay Health, Maroochy River Golf Club has launched the Sunshine Coast Junior Golf Academy.

    The academy, which had been operating for the past
    16 years at the former Horton Park Golf Club, is now being housed in state-of-the art facilities at the new Maroochy River club which has attracted a flood of new junior members since it opened in mid-June.

    According to Maroochy River GC junior development director Peter Owen, the number of juniors has more than doubled in recent months. And an offshoot of that has been victory in the recently-completed Sunshine Coast junior pennants

    Many of those juniors were on hand when the launch was held, along with club professional Sean Seymore, Ramsay Health’s Sunshine Coast University Private Hospital chief executive Oliver Steele and Maroochy River board members.

    Seymore spoke of the vision of expanding the academy into what he described as a training facility of international class.

    “When completed in a few weeks the new academy building will feature some of the most advanced teaching, training and fitness equipment available,” he said.

    “The new program will cater for young golfers of all levels, from introducing the game to primary school students right through to honing the skills of elite young golfers ready to make golf their profession.”

    Also featured will be expanded weekend programs, holiday training camps, access to the array of new equipment housed in the academy building and the opportunity to learn from the Maroochy River professional golf teaching team of Seymore, Di Pavich, Marcus McPherson and Will White.

    Story: Tony Durkin

    Pictured at the launch of the Sunshine Coast Junior Golf Acadmey are (from left) Di Pavich, Bailey Murchie, Sean Seymore, Jared McEvoy, Will White and Samantha Pearson

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    QLD Open: Round 4 Summary

    Victorian David Bransdon has won the Isuzu Queensland Open following a three hole playoff with New South Welshman Rohan Blizard.

    At the end of regulation play Bransdon and Blizard were all tied at the top of the leaderboard on 12-under 276 which was a new scoring record for the tournament when being played at Brookwater Golf and Country Club.

    The par-4 18
    th hole was used in a sudden death format to decide the champion with Bransdon emerging victorious with a birdie on the pair's third trip down the 396 metre hole.

    It was a long day for Bransdon who had to remain patient as he made 11 straight pars during regulation play.

    While the day held far more highlights for Blizard who recorded back-to-back eagles on the par-5 8
    th and par-4 9th holes.

    For his win Bransdon walks away with a winner's cheque of $16,500, official world golf ranking points plus full status on the PGA Tour of Australasia until the end of 2017.

    Queenslander Jake McLeod finished the leading amateur on 7-under 281 in a tied for 4
    th on the leaderboard.

    David Bransdon: 69,71, 67, 69

    "Pretty excited, I am shaking like a leaf, it's unbelievable,it's been a couple of years since my last win but I am pretty proud of the wayI played today and they way I hung in there."

    "We weren't exactly stumping it in really close, Rohan hit the closest shot in the last playoff hole and unfortunately missed it but I guess that's basically how playoffs work really, we were hitting nice drives every time so it was pretty much going to come down to a putt, that's what I thought anyway."

    "I said I was trying to stay patient because that's what my new mantra, stay patient, because it's not exactly been my forte, so I said,you're hitting it great, you're giving yourself chances you will hole one eventually and that's what I just kept telling myself."

    Rohan Blizard: 75,67, 67, 67

    "The 8th hole kind of kicked started my round,hitting a really good 3 wood into a par-5 for two into about 8 feet and holedthe putt for eagle so that kind of kick started my round and gave me someconfidence. Then on 9 I hit a good tee shot, perfect yardage with a lob wedgeand somehow it went into the hole, I hit it straight at the flag, one bounceand it went straight in the hole. That's something that doesn't happen veryoften, two eagles in a row so that got me in a good position heading into theback-9."

    "Obviously disappointed because I thought, I kind of had a feeling that I was going to win today, just after having 5-under the last two days and then when I made two eagles it's going to be my day today."

    "Disappointed but ah playing, the 18
    th is a tough hole to birdie so Dave making birdie is a great score on that hole and unluckily I just missed my putt , I hit it right where I was aiming it just broke more that I thought, that's just the way it goes."

    For more quotes from the players please visit the PGAMedia Centre.


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    Top Amateur Jack McLeod finishes third at the Isuzu Queensland Open in quality performance

    Jake McLeod closed with a four-under 68 to be leading amateur at the Isuzu Queensland Open and finished in a tie for third place overall.

    The 21-year old Royal Queensland member finished on seven-under for the 72 holes, five strokes adrift of eventual winner David Bransdon.

    McLeod is an exciting prospect, as evidenced by his 67 on Saturday, and he produced more action in Sunday’s final round when he notched five birdies and two bogeys in a roller-coaster opening eight holes.

    “I started well with successive birdies and then three-putted the third,’’ he said. “I held it together really nicely although I didn’t make many putts coming home.’’

    McLeod described his opening round 74 on Thursday as “scrappy” but was delighted with subsequent rounds of 72-67-68.

    “It was a good finish and I couldn’t be happier,’’ he said.

    McLeod, who won the 2012 Queensland Amateur Championship, is a member of the QAS squad and the state men’s team.

    “I still have a couple of amateur events to play in a month or so before I prepare for qualifying schools on the Australasian and Asian Tours,’’ he said.

    McLeod was easily the best of the four amateurs to make the cut finishing 6 shots in front of fellow Queenslander Blake Proverbs, 13 shots in front of Zach Murray (Victoria) and 18 strokes ahead of Travis Smyth (NSW).

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    Isuzu back Queensland Open golf championship for another three years
    Isuzu Trucks has committed to another three years as major sponsor of the Queensland Open Golf Championship.
    Mr Mike Yoda, managing director of Isuzu Australia, confirmed the company’s on-going support during Sunday’s final round of the Open at Brookwater.
    “We are proud to announce our continued support of the Queensland Open, said Mr Yoda.
    He was supported by Isuzu’s Brisbane Dealer Principal, Alan Newcombe, who was a driving force behind the company’s role in resurrecting the 90-year old tournament at Brookwater three years ago.
    The 2016 Queensland Open will be contested at Brisbane Golf Club which hosted the initial Open in 1925.
    “We are delighted to be involved for another three years and want to acknowledge the tremendous job Brookwater has done over the past three years,’’ said Mr Newcombe.
    Golf Queensland chairman Peter Castrisos said the commitment by Isuzu Trucks guaranteed the immediate future of the Open.
    “Isuzu Trucks has been outstanding for the tournament and it is a real positive for golf in this state to have such a sponsor involved in the future,’’ said Mr Castrisos.
    “And the effort by everyone at Brookwater in hosting the past three Queensland Opens has been excellent. On behalf of Golf Queensland we sincerely thank Brookwater.”
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    Bransdon takes Isuzu Queensland Open title after dramatic final round at Brookwater
    David Bransdon prevailed over fellow New South Wales professional Rohan Blizard after a three-hole play-off in a drama-charged final round of the Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater.
    After Blizard birdied the 71st hole to level at 12-under, the duo made regulation pars on the 18th and then returned to the tee to determine a sudden-death winner.

    In the 
    end it was 41-year old Bransdon who hoisted the T B Hunter Cup after making a curling four metre putt as they contested the 18th for the third time in the playoff.

    “My putter wasn’t behaving early in my 
    round but ultimately it was what won it for me,’’ said Bransdon.

    “Rohan played great and threw everything at me. He didn’t give anything. I had to earn it.’’

    experience, consistency and shot-making made him a worthy champion, but there was justifiable sympathy for the gritty Blizard who carded his third successive 67 which included a self-imposed penalty stroke called on the par-four, 12th hole.

    Blizard, 31, called the penalty when he believed his ball had oscillated minutely after he removed a nearby twig. He immediately summoned a rules official and added a shot to his score on the hole.

    “Golf is an honest game. If you see a ball move you call it on yourself,’’ he said. “I’d hit a bad shot off the tee and was moving a stick behind my ball when it touched a leaf and the ball kind of oscillated.’’

    Blizard, who ultimately
    chipped-in from 25m to par the hole, admirably refused to blame the penalty for his defeat.

    His 67 included consecutive eagles on the par-five 8th hole and par-four ninth to grab the outright lead at the midway stage of the round.

    “Rohan really produced some fireworks before the turn with those
    eagles but I figured I’d just do what I needed and hit it in the fairways and on to the greens,’’ said Bransdon. “If he kept making birdies and eagles he’d win, but I wasn’t going to change from the way I’d played the golf course all week. Get aggressive at Brookwater and it will jump up and bite you.’’

    carded a closing 69 to finish tied at 12-under with Blizard (67) with a four-shot break to third-placed Kiwi Mark Brown who shot 69. The consistency of Bransdon’s game was illustrated in the 21 holes he played on Sunday (including the playoff) which comprised 17 pars and four birdies.

    “The old adage in golf says patience will be rewarded,’’ he said. “Patience is normally not my
    forte but I hung in today and eventually the putts started to drop.’’

    revealed he first attempted to pre-qualify for the Queensland Open when he was 14-year old kid from Wauchope in country New South Wales.

    “Our club pro came up for the event and suggested I come as well to get some experienced,’’ recalled
    Bransdon. “Hard to believe it was 27 years ago.’’

    , who now lives in Sale, Victoria, with his wife and three children, said the Open victory will be a confidence boost when he tackles the European PGA Tour q-school later this year.

    Queenslander Jake McLeod was leading amateur after a fine 68 gave him a share of fourth place at 7-under with Adam Blyth (Qld) and Aaron Townsend (NSW).

    McLeod’s next major amateur event will be the Keperra
    Bowl but he said he intended to turn professional later this year.

    “I’m very happy with the way I played, especially after a bit of a shaky opening round,’’ he said.

    McLeod had a roller-coaster opening nine holes which included five birdies and two bogeys.

    Ed Stedman (NSW) was outright sixth after a 69 to be six-under, a stroke ahead of
    Quenslander michael Wright (68) and Michael Sim (73).

    Mathew Millar holed-out for a spectacular eagle in the par-four 18th to finish with a 67 to be four-under for the tournament.

    Millar’s hybrid approach from 180m went beyond the pin but trickled back into the hole.

    “It was a pretty good way to finish,’’ he said. “But the 77 on Saturday killed my chances. This is the most difficult course we play on the Australasian Tour.’’


    12-under: D Bransdon (NSW, won on 3rd playoff hole), R Blizard (NSW)
    8-under: M Brown (NZ)
    7-under: A Blyth (Qld), J McLeod (am Qld), A Townsend (NSW)
    6-under: E Stedman (NSW)
    5-under: M Sim (WA), M Wright (Qld)

    Catch the highlights from the Final Round


    Bruce Young reviews the weekend golf action from across the globe with Peter Psaltis & John McCoy on RadioTAB

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    QLD Open: Round 3 Summary

    Victorian David Bransdon leads by two shots heading into the final round of the Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater Golf and Country Club.

    On the challenging Greg Norman designed layout, where low numbers are not easily given up, Bransdon's two shot buffer from Rohan Blizard, who has fired back-to-back 5-under the card rounds to be outright second, maybe too much to overcome.

    Sitting a further shot back from Blizard is four time Tour winner Michael Sim who is looking to win his first title on home soil and Michael Choi who is looking to notch up his first Tour victory.

    Rounding out the top-5 on the leaderboard is New Zealander Mark Brown who is 5-under the card.

    The final round of the Isuzu Queensland Open will tee off at 9.10am with the leader on course at 10.30am.


    David Bransdon: 68, 71, 67

    "Basically no different to the other two days but I kept the short missed putts off the card today and the big numbers so that was the only difference really, I putted much better today."

    "I had to wait for the guys I was staying with yesterday for about 40-45 minutes and that's all I did, inside 10 feet was just, because that's the putts that I am struggling with at the moment, so I just practiced those until the boys came in. I was rolling a few on the greens and it continued today."

    "That's two less that I have to have tomorrow so that's always a bonus, and especially around here because it's a tough course, it's not a 62, 63 golf course so if I can go out there and keep it in the fairway, keep it on the green, hole a few putts, you never know at the end of the day."

    Rohan Blizard: 75, 67, 67

    "After the first round I had 3-over so I wasn't really expecting to be in this position after the first round so really happy with the last two days having 5-under the last two days and it would be good to be in the mix again on Sunday, it's been a while so I am looking forward to it."

    "I have never played that well here before but I have always thought that I could do well here. So I think it's just taken a couple of years to get used to the course."

    Michael Choi: 70, 71, 69

    "If I was in the lead it might be a bit different but I'm a couple a shots back so I'm not to fussed at the moment. Just try and start off steady and give it a god on the back-9 if I am in touch. But I am not too nervous at the moment."

    Michael Sim: 69, 71, 70

    "It felt a little bit different this morning, obviously playing front of a crowd, it's nice to play these events and get in contention and that gets you ready for the end of the year. So I am sure there will be a crowd tomorrow, I think I might be in the second last group, I'm not quite sure, but it's just nice to be in the hunt, and put under par rounds together out there."

    Mark Brown: 74, 67, 70

    "It's been good, I am probably close to three months without playing so I expected a bit of rust this week and it's actually been a bit better than I thought it would be. It's been pretty steady most of the week."

    For more quotes from the players please visit the PGA Media Centre

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    Victorian Bransdon shoots 67 to take a two-stroke lead into final round
    Victorian David Bransdon will take a two-shot lead and a stress-free attitude into Sunday’s final round of the Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater.
    “Stress-free golf at Brookwater is good because this course is relentless. It can tear you apart,’’ said Bransdon. “I feel comfortable leading the tournament and, more importantly, comfortable with where my game is at the moment.’’
    Bransdon’s third round 67 took him to the front on a day when seven players either led or shared the lead at some stage. He is at nine-under, two strokes ahead of New South Welshman Rohan Blizard who also shot a five-under 67.
    A further shot adrift are Victorian Michael Choi, who carded 69, and Perth’s Michael Sim (70).
    The feature of Bransdon’s play has been his ball-striking which he showcased on the par-5, 17th hole, with a booming 300m drive followed by an exquisite 6-iron to within five metres. He missed the eagle putt, but tapped-in for birdie.
    “My putting has been the pain-in-the-butt of my 20-years as a professional, but it is getting better,’’ laughed Bransdon. “I putted much better today than I did on the previous two days...”
    The 41-year old is a prolific pro-am winner but has also been a consistent tournament performer. He had top-20 finishes at last year’s Australian Open and PGA Championships and his wins include the West Australian PGA Championship and the 2013 Heritage Classic in Melbourne.
    “I’ve three young kids back home in Sale and they love it when I bring a trophy home,’’ he said.
    Known as somewhat of a firebrand in his younger days, Bransdon said he had mellowed and learned to accept bad breaks on the golf course.
    Blizard’s effort to shoot a second straight 67 was outstanding. He notched six birdies today with the only blemish on his card a bogey on the par-4, 10th hole.
    Sim and Choi played consistently to be within three shots of the lead while experienced Kiwi Mark Brown is one stroke back after a third round 70.
    Victorian Rory Bourke, who had been on top of the leaderboard for the opening two rounds, is within striking distance at four-under with Queenslander Ray Beaufils and Aaron Townsend (NSW).
    Bourke’s 73 included a superbly struck 8-iron to within half a metre of the flag on the 167m, par-3, fifth hole which carried a $50,000 hole-in-one prize.
    Matthew Millar, who started the day one shot off the lead, faded with a 77 while Gavin Flint also dropped off the pace with a 75.
    Leading amateur is Queenslander Jake McLeod who equalled the best round of the day with a 67 to be at three-under after 54 holes.
    McLeod, 21, showed plenty of character to bounce back from a double-bogey on his second hole to birdie four of the next six holes.
    “I just kept in play off the tee and rolled in a lot of putts,’’ he said.
    “I rolled in a few 15 to 20 footers and also holed out for a bunker on the 12th.’’
    McLeod won the 2012 Queensland Amateur Championship and was runner-up in the event the following year.


    9-under: D Bransdon (VIC)
    7-under: R Blizard (NSW)
    6-under: M Choi (Vic), M Sim (WA)
    5-under: M Brown (NZ)
    4-under: R Beaufils (Qld), A Townsend (NSW), R Bourke (Vic).

    Catch today's highlights - click here
    See what Jake McLeod and David Bransdon had to say after their round - click here
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    Amateur Jake McLeod shoots sizzling 67

    Queensland amateur Jake McLeod fired a five-under 67 to rocket up the leaderboard during the third round of the Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater.McLeod’s outstanding round included seven birdies and a double-bogey which came on his second hole (the 11th on the card).

    But the 21-year old was unfazed, holing out from a bunker for birdie on the 12th to quickly get his round back on track.

    “I just kept it in play from the tee all day and rolled in a lot of putts,’’ he said. “There were a few 15 to 20-footers and I also holed out from the bunker on 12.’’

    McLeod, who won the 2012 Queensland Amateur Championship and was runner-up the following year, will start Sunday’s final round at three-under after rounds of 74-72-67.

    He was also a member of the Queensland state team which won the national interstate series in 2012.

    “Cameron Smith was in that team and everyone knows what a great player he has proven to be. He gave me something to aspire to,’’ said McLeod.

    McLeod came from Townsville to attend the golf academy at Hills International College in 2009 and graduated in 2011.

    “I work part-time at Victoria Park Golf Club and practice and train with the QAS and state golf squads,’’ he said.

    “We practice and play a lot at Brookwater and I played the Queensland Open for the previous two years. I came in with the expectation of making the cut this week but if I can produce another round like today who knows what might happen.’’

    Catch Jake's interview after today's round - click here

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    QLD Open: Round 2 Summary

    Steady scores were the order of the day in the second round of the Isuzu Queensland Open being played at Brookwater Golf and Country Club.

    Victorian Rory Bourke who held a share of the overnight lead fired 1-under 71 to find himself clear at the top of the leaderboard on 5-under the card.

    Sitting just one shot behind him having also shot round of 71 are experienced winners David Bransdon, Michael Sim and Matthew Millar.

    A group of seven players including New Zealander Mark Brown who fired 5-under 67, the equal best round of the day, round out the top-10 on the leaderboard. They are all tied 5
    th on 3-under the card.

    The second round cut was made at 5-over the card with 50 Professionals and four amateurs making the weekend rounds.

    The third round will tee off at 9.10am with the leaders on course 10.30am. 

    Key Quotes:

    Rory Bourke: 68, 71

    "It was very scrappy, I started really well, then the wind got up and I just couldn't hit, many good shots and I was just getting it on the green and taking my pars in the end which was tough enough out there.  At the moment it (a win) would mean everything. It would make things a lot easier for the next 12 months."

    David Bransdon: 69, 71

    "It was a bit different. I knew what I shot I, knew I had 1-under, I knew I had two doubles,  I didn't realise how many bogeys I had and I didn't realize till I signed my card that I had seven birdies as well. So it was a very mixed bag. It is such a tough golf course, it doesn't give you a lot, well I made seven birdies, but normally it is very easy to make a mistake  and that's what you've got to try and keep off and hopefully I can do better job of it over the weekend."

    Matt Millar: 69, 71

    "I guess the conditions were pretty good, we were hoping the rain would hold off and it has.  A few tight pins today, might have been a bit harder that yesterday. It seemed like they were, so it was a little bit tricky to get near some of them but yeah I played nicely I guess, in general. The only thing that bothered me was the course, with my game not being as long as a lot of the other guys, it can be a little more demanding."

    For more quotes from the players please visit the
     PGA Media Centre

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    Amateurs gobble up pro lessons
    There were 13 Queensland amateurs among the 16 who pegged it up in the Isuzu Queensland Open.

    Two of the four who made the cut to play this weekend proudly wear the maroon of Golf Queensland and the Queensland Academy of Sport, the golfing department of which is based on site at Brookwater.

    But when the group next comes together, there will be hundreds of stories.

    Because while Victorian Zach Murray and New South Welshman Travis Smyth will join Queensland state team players Blake Proverbs and Jake McLeod in weekend action, the experience for all 13 has already been invaluable.

    Promising Anthony Quayle, already the winner of this year’s Pacific Northwest Amateur in Oregon, fell on the wrong side of the +5 cut, missing by two strokes.

    But he said the lessons he took from playing in his state Open championship have been invaluable as he eyes a future pro career.

    “For all 13 of us, it’s a good chance to try to learn from the tour pros we’re playing with and see how we stack up against them,” Quayle said after his round of 73 today.

    “Regardless of how we’ve played, if we can take a few lessons from it and move forward, it’s definitely a good event for us.”

    And highlighting the camaraderie among amateurs of his generation, and particularly at the QAS, Quayle said there would “absolutely be pooling” of information in next week’s debrief.

    “I’m sure we’ll all talk about a few shots we shouldn’t have hit and whether we had a putt to make the cut,” he said.

    “I’m sure there’s a couple of us still here with the capability to be in contention on Sunday.

    “So yeah, it will be great to get back to QAS next week and share our stories and information – it helps us get better.”

    Quayle said his colleagues, inspired by the major championship winning heroics of fellow Queenslanders Jason Day and Adam Scott, had a pathway that was world class.

    “What Golf Australia and GQ through the Queensland Academy of Sport are doing is generating a lot of good, strong players.

    “What Jason is doing, what Adam was doing 18 months or so ago, it’s definitely inspiring this generation that’s coming through now.

    “I think it’s a credit to the two organisations who are working with the juniors and amateurs – they’re starting young and Australian golf will see the benefits in years to come.“Everything goes hand in hand with what Jason is doing, the two programs are doing and obviously the work the amateurs are putting into the game now to make sure we get there as well.”

    Queensland amateurs through two rounds (cut +5):

    +2 Jake McLeod
    +4 Blake Proverbs
    +6 Jarrod Stirling
    +7 Anthony Quayle
    +8 Jack Sullivan, Shae Wools-Cobb
    +9 Cory Crawford, James Macklin
    +10 Simon Viitakangas, Charlie Dann
    +12 Chris Crabtree, Sam Daley
    +20 Mitchell Smith
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    Rory Bourke’s caddie experience a boost as he leads

    Watching the world’s best players at close quarters convinced Victorian Rory Bourke he could refine his game to become a competitive tournament professional.

    Bourke, who quit golf for a period to caddie for players paired with the likes of Tiger Woods, Adam Scott, Graeme McDowall and Ian Poulter, leads the Isuzu Queensland Open after 36 holes at Brookwater.

    The 27-year old followed his opening 68 with a solid second round 71 to be at five-under after 36 holes, a stroke ahead of David Bransdon, Michael Sim and Matthew Millar who all carded 71s.

    On a packed leaderboard, 11 players are within two shots of the lead. Experienced Kiwi Mark Brown, who played himself into the mix with a 67 in difficult afternoon conditions, is one of seven players at three-under for the tournament.

    Bourke endured a rough start after turning pro in 2012 and decided to shelve his clubs and caddie for Korean-born Jin Jeong, a mate from their amateur days in Melbourne. Jin Jeong struck early paydirt as a pro when he won the 2013 Perth International with Bourke on the bag.

    “I went to Europe caddying for Jin and was fortunate to have been involved in groups that included some of the world’s best players,’’ said Bourke.

    “I also talked a lot with Martin Kaymer and took a lot from the whole experience. It showed me what you need to do to be successful. “Those players don’t make mistakes like a lot of amateurs or younger pros. They tighten up a few things and it goes from there.’’

    Bourke returned from Europe resigned to reigniting his professional career and was successful at last year’s Australasian PGA Tour qualifying school.

    “I’ve played at tournaments like the Queensland Open for a couple of years and a win this week for be massive for me. It would get me a start in a few big Australian events later in the year and provide a bit of money for me to have a go at some q-schools overseas.’’

    Bourke had a strong amateur career in Victorian, representing the state for five years, and also contested the US and British amateur championships and finished runner-up at the Scottish amateur.

    “I had a decent amateur career,’’ he said. “That’s where I met and became good mates with Jin ...”

    New Zealander Brown’s 67 was the best of the day and was equalled by Rohan Blizard and Scott Laycock who are at two-under and one-over respectively.

    “It’s a tough track and it was tricky this afternoon,’’ said Brown. “Fairways are tight and the greens small ... it is a very strong test.

    “Shooting five-under certainly moves me up the board.’’

    Brown has performed well internationally and won the 2008 Johnny Walker Classic in India. Next week he will play the Russian Open on the European Tour.

    Overnight joint leader Daniel Valente got to five-under with two holes to play but a double-bogey on his penultimate hole resulted in a 73.

    New South Welshman Aaron Townsend played well for a 69 after dropping a shot on his final hole to be two strokes adrift of Bourke.

    “Every hole is a bogey-in-waiting here so you have to be careful,’’ said Townsend.

    “I’m not overly long but I hit it pretty straight and putted nicely. But I’d like to get my iron play a bit sharper.”

    Queenslander Gavin Flint, who shared the first round lead, carded a 73 to be two shots off the pace.

    The cut was indicative of the testing Brookwater layout at five-over par with a number of prominent players failing to qualify for the weekend. Casualties included tournament favourite Brad Kennedy, Matt Griffin, Steven Leaney and Jake Higginbottom.

    LEADERBOARD (36 holes)

    5-under: R Bourke (Vic)
    4-under: D Bransdon (Vic), M Sim (WA), M Millar (ACT)
    3-under: E Stedman (NSW), A Townsend (NSW), R Beaufils (Qld), M Brown (NZ), M Choi (Vic), D Valente (Vic), Gavin Flint (Qld)
    2-under: S Jeffress (NSW), R Blizard (WA), M Guyatt (Qld), M Wright (Qld)

    Catch up with all the Round 2 vision - click here
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    Rory Bourke’s experience as a caddie invaluable as he leads second round

    Watching the world’s best players at close quarters convinced Victorian Rory Bourke he could refine his game to become a competitive tournament professional.

    Bourke, who has caddied for players paired with the likes of Tiger Woods, Adam Scott, Graeme McDowall and Ian Poulter, shot a 71 today for a one-stroke lead in the Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater.

    After a rough start as a professional golfer in 2012, Bourke decided to shelve his clubs and caddie for Korean-born Jin Jeong, a mate from their amateur days in Melbourne. Jin Jeong struck early paydirt as a pro when he won the 2013 Perth International with Bourke on the bag.

    “I went to Europe caddying for Jin and was fortunate to have been involved in groups that included some of the world’s best players,’’ said Bourke.

    “I also talked a lot with Martin Kaymer and took a lot from the whole experience.

    “It showed me what you need to do to be successful. Those players don’t make mistakes like a lot of amateurs or younger pros.

    “They tighten up a few things and it goes from there.’’

    Bourke, 27, returned from Europe resigned to reigniting his professional career and was successful at last year’s Australasian PGA Tour qualifying school.

    “I’ve played at tournaments like the Queensland Open for a couple of years and a win this week for be massive for me. It would get me a start in a few big Australian events later in the year and provide a bit of money for me to have a go at some q-schools overseas.’’

    Bourke had a strong amateur career in Victorian, representing the state for five years and contesting the US and British amateur championships before turning pro.

    “I had a decent amateur career,’’ he said. “That’s where I met and became good mates with Jin ...”

    Bourke’s solid today 71 followed his opening 68 when he finished with eagle on the 17th a birdie on the final hole.

    “I got off to a flyer but struggled a bit in the middle of the round. I kept my head up and finished okay.’’

    After the morning rounds at Brookwater he holds a one shot lead over David Bransdon (71 today), Michael Sim (71) and Matthew Millar (71).

    A further shot drift at three–under after 36 holes are Ed Stedman who carded a second round 71 and Aaron Townsend (69).

    “Every hole is a bogey-in-waiting here so you have to be careful,’’ said Townsend.

    “I’m not overly long but I hit it pretty straight and putted nicely. But I’d like to get my iron play a bit sharper.”

    Low rounds of the morning came from Scott Laycock and Rohan Blizard who had five-under 67s, vast improvements on their opening 78 and 75 respectively.
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    Volunteers make the tournaments go around
    They are dotted around the course wearing red shirts and white caps, enjoying the golf and exuding enthusiasm.
    Hardly a golf tournament in the world can operate without volunteers and the Isuzu Queensland Open is no exception.
    About 25 volunteers are working at the 2015 Open and Golf Queensland manager Matt Field says they are stretched to cover a myriad of tasks on and off the course.
    “Without the help of the volunteers the event would simply not function efficiently,’’ said Field. “They all have a love of golf, but are not necessarily good golfers or even regular golfers.
    “We have a lady who worked at last year’s Open after just starting the game at St Lucia. She enjoyed the experience so much she is back again this year.’’
    Field said the majority of volunteers were golf club members from nearby areas such as Oxley, Ipswich and host club Brookwater.
    “But we have people from further afield such as Redland Bay,’’ he said.
    “They all enjoying watching the players and also to see how a tournament functions. We receive some very positive feedback on their experience.’’
    Aside from the satisfaction of being involved, volunteers receive a free Isuzu Queensland Open shirt, cap and voucher for a free game at Brookwater. They also receive an invitation to Golf Queensland’s annual Volunteer Day.
    Duties for the volunteers are varied, ranging through scoring, spotting, providing information, player transport, car parking, on-course drinks, tending leaderboards and more.
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    QLD Open: Round 1 Summary

    Daniel Valente, Gavin Flint and Rory Bourke are tied for the lead on 4-under 68 following the first round of the Isuzu Queensland Open being played at Brookwater Golf and Country Club.

    Victorian Daniel Valente has never played the Greg Norman designed Brookwater layout while Gavin Flint was a member of the Queensland State Team as an amateur and completed his training on the challenging layout.

    Victorian Rory Bourke finished with an eagle and a birdie to join the lead as darkness threatened to halt his round.

    Michael Wright fired 3-under 69 in the morning field on his home course and was joined later in the day at tied 4th on the leaderboard by David Bransdon, Michael Sim and Matthew Millar.

    Rounding out the top-10 on 2-under 70 are Marcus Cain, Ed Stedman, Michael Choi and Taylor Macdonald who made his Professional debut today.

    Key Quotes: 

    Daniel Valente - 4-under 68

    "I thought it was a really tough golf course the first time playing. I had heard that it's extremely tough. Obviously all the boys had said that its very penal. I got off to a hot start playing the back-9 and just kept it kind of going. You just have to be really on your game, it's there if you can play really well but if you are a little bit off, a hole can bite you very, very easily," said Daniel Valente.

    Gavin Flint - 4-under 68

    "I have played here a lot; I came through the Queensland Teams and Queensland Academy of Sport so I have probably had 100 plus rounds out here. I definitely have a good idea of how I like to play the course; it's pretty tricky so my game plan was pretty good today. You have to be aggressive off the tee without hitting too many drivers, because the second shots on this golf course can be really difficult. Today I put it into pretty good positions off the tee and then I was able to capitalise," said Gavin Flint.

    Rory Bourke - 4-under 68

    "I came home really hard the last few holes with a birdie and an eagle so it was great. I was playing terrible the last few weeks. I had a win and then haven't touched the clubs for a bit and so it's been getting back into it and it had completely dropped off. I was getting a bit worried actually but yesterday it was quite good and I thought that's fine I'll breed off that and today was exceptional so that's great," said Rory Bourke.

    Michael Wright - 3-under 69

    "I have played terrible the last few years. I just put so much pressure on myself the last couple of years. With everyone saying "oh it's your home course you're the red hot favourite," but this year I've actually slipped under the radar, it's been great. No one has really said too much so I just didn't really have any expectations and went out and played my golf. It's good to start off on a good note and I look forward to the rest of the week," said Michael Wright.

    Michael Sim - 3-under 69

    "That's actually my lowest round, around here so I haven't really broken par too much so I'm off to a good start this week so see how the next few days go. Hopefully the wind dies down in the morning tomorrow and we get some nice greens and keep going on top of 3-under. I'm playing better and I am enjoying my golf and I have been working hard so it's nice to get off to a good start. It will be nice to play the next three rounds and see what happens," said Sim.

    Taylor Macdonald - 2-under 70

    "The first tee shot, I have hit that tee shot many a time, it was just five times harder today, I'm not sure why. The nerves were there for about three of four holes and then after that I was good to go," said Taylor Macdonald.

    For more quotes from the players please visit the PGA Media Centre.

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    Trio lead Queensland Open
    Daniel Valente, Gavin Flint and Rory Bourke are tied for the lead on 4-under 68 following the first round of the Isuzu Queensland Open being played at Brookwater Golf and Country Club.

    Victorian Daniel Valente has never played the Greg Norman designed Brookwater layout while Gavin Flint was a member of the Queensland State Team as an amateur and completed his training on the challenging layout.

    Victorian Rory Bourke finished with an eagle and a birdie to join the lead as darkness threatened to halt his round.

    Michael Wright fired 3-under 69 in the morning field on his home course and was joined later in the day at tied 4th on the leaderboard by David Bransdon, Michael Sim and Matthew Millar.

    Rounding out the top-10 on 2-under 70 are Marcus Cain, Ed Stedman, Michael Choi and Taylor Macdonald who made his Professional debut today.

    For all round 1 scores please visit

    For all round 2 tee times please visit
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    Victorian rookie storms home to share lead
    Rookie pro Rory Bourke stormed home with an eagle-birdie finish to share the first round lead of the Isuzu Queensland Open with Queenslander Gavin Flint and fellow Victorian Daniel Valente on four-under 68 at Brookwater.
    Bourke’s stunning finish came in fading light as calm descended on Brookwater after difficult breezes had made afternoon play difficult.
    His only previous wins as a professional have been in pro-ams at Yeppoon, three weeks ago, and in West Australia in June.
    Flint and Valente had the best of the early conditions to share the one stroke lead over Queenslander Michael Wright, Michael Sim (WA), David Bransdon (Vic) and Matthew Miller (ACT).
    The difficulty of Brookwater’s testing layout was evidenced when only 16 of 120 players broke par in the first round.
    Flint, who turned professional in 2004 after a stellar amateur career, played consistently with six birdies and two bogeys.
    The 34-year has something in common with US PGA champion Jason Day in that he suffers bouts of vertigo on the golf course.
    “I’ve had vertigo on and off for the past three years but it stayed away today,’’ he said. “Hopefully that doesn’t change for the rest of the week.’’
    Flint’s consistency was the keynote. He turned in 33 after starting on the 10th hole and held his game together on his homeward nine in perfect early conditions.
    “I’m very happy. After getting away to a good start I held it together pretty well for the rest of the round,’’ he said.
    Flint has campaigned in China for the past two years after losing his card on the Asian Tour.
    As an amateur he was a Queensland state teammate of Steven Bowditch and Andrew Buckle. At one stage Flint concurrently held the Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and New Zealand amateur titles.
    Valente, 30, who was playing his first tournament in five months after a fractured rib, made a sensational start off the 10th with four successive birdies. He notched another on the 17th to play his opening nine holes in 31.
    He dropped shots on the second and fourth holes but made birdie on the ninth (his last) for a 68.
    “It was a real hot start and I should have actually birdied the fifth as well,’’ he said. “I’m fresh after a long break and it was good to come back that well.
    “The injury set me back. But it has given me an opportunity to work on my game and get ready for European Tour school later in the year.”
    Sims, Bransdon and Miller had to battle tricky winds during their afternoon rounds of 69.

    “The wind was all over the place. One numerous holes you would be standing on the tee and the wind would change direction,’’ said Sim. “I chipped and putted well which helped.’’

    Sim rolled in five metre putts on the eighth and ninth holes and then from 15m from the fringe of the green on the 11th for birdie.

    Bransdon agreed the breeze which heightened after the benign morning conditions was a significant challenge.

    “It was flukey and changed direction,’’ said

    Bransdon. “But I enjoy the course. It’s up my alley because I’m a better ball striker than I am putter.’’

    On 70 are Queenslander Taylor MacDonald, who played impressively in his debut round as a professional, Marcus Cain (Qld), Ed Stedman (NSW), and Michael Choi (Vic).

     Leading amateur is Victorian Zach Murray who is in a group of players on 71 including Matthew Guyatt who strung together five straight birdies despite the discomfort of back pain. Guyatt left the course immediately to seek treatment in an endeavour to be fit for the second round.


    68 G Flint (Qld), D Valente (Vic), Rory Bourke (Vic)
    69 M Wright (Qld), M Sim (WA), D Bransdon (Vic), M Miller (ACT)
    70 M Cain (Qld), T MacDonald (Qld), M Choi (Vic), E Stedman (NSW)
    71 R Beaufils (Qld), T Wood (Vic), M Guyatt (Qld), M McArdle (SA), Z Murray am (Vic)
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    Valente joins the top
    It’s safe to say Victorian Daniel Valente has taken a circuitous path to the top of the Isuzu Queensland Open leaderboard.
    Valente, 30, peeled off a four-under-par 68 today to share the first-round lead with fellow Victoria Rory Bourke and Queenslander Gavin Flint.
    But while his game was smooth, it has been anything but for the late-blooming Melburnian to arrive at this point.
    Valente, who grew up playing at Werribee Park before moving to nearby Sanctuary Lakes, realised his game “wasn’t up to pro standard” when touring with fellow Victorian David McKendrick playing mini tours in the United States a few years back.
    But when his game clicked with his good mate’s coach, American Geoff Jones, the pieces started to come together.
    With a revised swing and outlook, Valente charged to prominence late last year after “Monday qualifying” to a string of events, then using good results to keep playing despite not having any official status at the time.
    But four top-eight finishes in three months – and a bold showing at the Australian Masters -- to end last year’s Australian PGA Tour season gave him great hope he’d turned the corner.
    But that all came to a grinding halt late last summer when he, without any contact and only swinging in practice, broke a rib.
    “So I had gathered a bit of momentum, finally and then I haven’t played a tournament since,” said Valente, who made four birdies in his opening five holes, including a near ace on the 14th.
    “It was really frustrating because I just started to feel like I was getting somewhere and then I had to stop.
    “But I’ve just been to see Geoff again and I’m feeling pretty good about things again.”
    It’s a name well worth watching this summer as Valente clearly has the game to feel comfortable on the Australian tour – and is only now getting the chance to show it.
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    Taylor Macdonald all class in Pro debut

    Debutant professional Taylor Macdonald was all poise and patience during an impressive opening 70 at the Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater.Followed by an enthusiastic gallery mostly from the Redcliffe and Pine Rivers Golf Clubs where he learnt his golf, Macdonald played a disciplined round in which he used his driver on only three tees.

     Impressively, he showed admirable composure to recover from an opening double-bogey six on his opening hole (the 10th).

     “I was actually very nervous but came back with a birdie on the next hole and was right from there,’’ he said.

     Macdonald was behind the green for three on the 347m, par four, but his chip skidded across the green and rolled back down the fairway.

     “I then hit a great pitch to about five feet and made the putt. I said to my caddie that I’d hit four good shots on the hole and still walked off with double-bogey,’’ said Macdonald.

     “You have to know when to be conservative around here. If you hit it off the fairway you’re going to have a wild day and it’s not going to be very nice in your head.

     “Keep the ball in play and on the greens and you are going to have a relatively good score. You can be patient or aggressive ... it can go both ways. It is about making judgements.’’

     The strongly-built Macdonald, 23, said he hit driver on only the second, eighth and 17 holes.

     “I’m lucky to have played a lot of golf at Brookwater and pretty much know how it plays.’’

     Other amateur opening rounds included 71 Zach Murray (Victoria), 73, 75 Travis Smyth (NSW), 75 Cory Crawford (Qld) and 78 Anthony Quayle and James Macklin (both Qld).

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    Flint and Valente shoot 68s for early lead

    Queenslander Gavin Flint and Victorian Daniel Valente shared the early lead in the $110,000 Isuzu Queensland Open today after shooting four-under 68s on the testing Brookwater layout near Ipswich.

    Flint (pictured), who turned professional in 2004 after a stellar amateur career, played consistently with six birdies and two bogeys.

    The 34-year has something in common with US PGA champion Jason Day in that he suffers bouts of vertigo on the golf course.

    “I’ve had vertigo on and off for the past three years but it stayed away today,’’ he said. “Hopefully that doesn’t change for the rest of the week.’’

    Flint’s consistency was the keynote. He turned in 33 after starting on the 10th hole and held his game together on his homeward nine in perfect early conditions.

    “I’m very happy. After getting away to a good start I held it together pretty well for the rest of the round,’’ he said.

    Flint has campaigned in China for the past two years after losing his card on the Asian Tour.

    As an amateur he was a Queensland state teammate of Steven Bowditch and Andrew Buckle. At one stage Flint concurrently held the Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria and New Zealand amateur titles.

    Valente, 30, who was playing his first tournament in five months after a fractured rib, made a sensational start off the 10th with four successive birdies. He notched another on the 17th to play his opening nine holes in 31.

    He dropped shots on the second and fourth holes but made birdie on the ninth (his last) for a 68.

    “It was a real hot start and I should have actually birdied the fifth as well,’’ he said. “I’m fresh after a long break and it was good to come back that well.

    “The injury set me back. But it has given me an opportunity to work on my game and get ready for European Tour school later in the year.

    Flint and Valente have a one stroke lead over Queenslander Michael Wright who knows the arduous Brookwater layout like the back of his hand.

    A further shot back on 70 are Victorian Michael Choi and Queenslanders Marcus Cain and Taylor MacDonald who is making his professional debut.

    Matt Guyatt, who finished his round in pain after battling a back injury, had a string of five successive birdies in his 71.

    Leading amateur after completion of the morning rounds was Victorian Zac Murray who also shot 71.

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    Guyatt opens with a rollercoaster round

    Matt Guyatt signed for a 71 at Brookwater today – but it was far from plain sailing.

    The affable Brisbane pro said he “felt something pop” in his lower back early in what became a rollercoaster opening round.

    Guyatt, 40, was doing all he could to stretch out after and between shots, but feared that he might have to pull out midway through his first nine holes, on the back nine.

    But true to his hard-working nature, Guyatt knuckled down and tried to get back to the clubhouse with his scorecard intact.

    Bogeys on the 14th, 15th and the 18th tested his patience and dropped him to two over, but the 2011 NSW PGA champion soon had spectacular rewards for his fight.

    Using a short putter in competition for the first time in almost 15 years, Guyatt calmly rolled in five consecutive birdie putts to storm through the pack.

    Only two late bogeys prevented a score that would have better represented his efforts, but Guyatt was happy enough to “escape” with his 71.

    “I need to go and work this out … maybe see my chiro and see what happens,” Guyatt said.

    “I’m pretty sure I’ll be right to go tomorrow, but yeah, that wasn’t fun for a while.”
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    Felton withdraws in agony

    Perth prodigy Jarryd Felton has withdrawn from the Isuzu Queensland Open with a debilitating back injury.

    An emotional Felton, 20, will fly home to Western Australia tomorrow with his immediate playing future in doubt, fearing a fourth serious flare-up of injuries in his hips and lower back.

    The Golf Australia national squad member blames a 46-hour trip from Chicago to Perth via Los Angeles and Brisbane after the recent Western Amateur in the United States as the cause of his problem.

    A short rest in Perth before flying to Brookwater seemed to help, but Felton, who had been considering turning professional this summer, said he knew after six practice holes on Monday that he was “in trouble”.

    “I’ve had a history of these type of things and it’s something I can’t push when it happens,” said Felton, who was restricted to walking the course on Tuesday before deciding to withdraw today without swinging a club.

    “It’s really painful, but the worst thing is knowing what I’ve gone through before and hoping it’s not a recurrence of that.

    “The best case is that it’s just a back injury, maybe a swollen disc … and that it will get better with rest and treatment.

    “I don’t really want to think about the worst case … I’m just going to analyse it all for now with (Golf WA physio) Martin Mcinnes and we’ll take it from there.

    “It’s not a case of thinking surgery or anything right now, it’s just time to see what’s wrong and make a plan from there.”

    Felton, based at Gosnells Golf Club in suburban Perth, has been in exemplary form this year, remarkably going unbeaten as the No.1 seed for WA in the Interstate Series.

    He also had two great results touring with an Australian team to South America, finishing runner-up at both the Southern Cross Invitational and in the Argentina Strokeplay Championship.

    But he has a history of having lengthy breaks with injury having spent more than six months out after separate hip surgeries as a young teenager, then again missing several months after a bulging disc in his back two years ago.

    “I’ve had these things before and Marty and all my team in WA have said to me that I just will have to work through these things throughout my career,” a stoic Felton said.

    “They’ve basically said that I just have to work six times harder than the average player on my fitness and … keeping these things (at bay).

    “Hopefully it’s just something minor this time. I’ll just go back to Perth tomorrow and … get to the bottom of it.

    “It just means I’ll have to go even harder on these things when I come back. It’s not going to stop me.

    “It’s just something we will figure out and hopefully … get it to the point where it doesn’t keep happening in the future.”

    Story: Mark Hayes, Golf Australia
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    Matt Griffin ready to fire at Isuzu Queensland Open

    Victorian Matthew Griffin has emerged from a slow start to the year to hit top form on the eve of the Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater.

    Griffin, who tied for third at Brookwater in 2014, has had two strong finishes on the Japan PGA Tour since June.

    “I wasn’t playing well until the end of May but have finished eighth and 13th in Japan since then and have found some form,’’ Griffin said, after yesterday’s pro-am.

    “I enjoy Brookwater and hope to be in there with a chance to win on Sunday. It’s a tight layout and you have to work the ball around which suits my game.’’

    Griffin, 32, will fly out to South Korea immediately after the Open to defend the Korean PGA title he won last year.

    “And then it is back to Japan for the second half of the season,’’ he said.

    A former top amateur, ranked No 3 in the world at one stage, Griffin turned pro in 2008 and was the No 1 player on the One Asian Tour in 2013. The following year he won the Victorian Open as well as the Korean PGA.

    Griffin last year carded rounds of 73,70, 68 and 74 at Brookwater to finish four strokes adrift of eventual winner Andrew Dodt.

    IMAGE: Matt Griffin took to the skies on Wednesday thanks to Pterodactyl Helicopters to view Ipswich from above.
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    Tour Veteran Stephen Leaney looking for a solid start at Brookwater

    Seasoned global golf campaigner Stephen Leaney believes a strong start in tomorrow’s opening round is vital to his chances in the Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater.

    Leaney, runner-up to Jim Furyk at the 2003 US Open and a four-time winner on the European Tour, has been hampered by limited tournament play this year.

    “This will only be my fourth event for 2015,’’ he said. “I expect to be rusty and the biggest challenge for me is to come out and feel comfortable on the golf course.

    “The times I’ve played this year it has taken me eight or 10 holes to gain any sort of playing rhythm. If I can get off to a solid start over the opening nine holes I should be able to set myself off for the rest of the week.’’

    Leaney’s vast experience and proven patience as a professional over two decades should be an advantage if he makes a positive start. His first significant victory was in Queensland in 1996 when he defeated American Corey Pavin in a play-off to take the ANZ Players Championship at Royal Queensland.

    “Brookwater is a hard golf course because if you miss by a little bit it is magnified and you can have a lot of high scores. You don’t have to do a lot wrong to have high numbers out there.

    “In another sense, it is good that you have to be patient ... something I’ve been good at my whole career.’’

    Leaney predicts this week’s winning score will be similar to Andrew Dodt’s seven-under aggregate which won in 2014.

    “Scoring is not going to be low. Single digits under par will probably win it.’’

    Leaney is out early in tomorrow’s opening round. He tees off at 7.15am with Kiwi Mark Brown and Victorian Josh Younger.

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    Brad Kennedy’s form in Japan looks good

    Brad Kennedy, the top-ranked player at the 2015 Isuzu Queensland Open, has interrupted a successful season in Japan for a “hit and run” visit to Brookwater.

    Kennedy is currently seventh on the Japan PGA Tour money-list with earnings of $A338,500. He has finished runner-up three times this season from nine tournament starts.

    A two-time winner in Japan, Kennedy is currently the 11th highest world ranked Australian at number 164.

    “I’m only home for a week and look forward to playing Brookwater under tournament conditions,’’ said Kennedy. “I’ve moved my wife and two daughters to live in Tokyo this year so don’t need to travel home as frequently as I’ve done in past years.

    “It has been a real positive for my family and my golf. We’re very happy to be based in Japan.’’

    Kennedy, who played today’s pro-am at Brookwater will partner fellow Queenslanders Matt Guyatt and amateur Cory Crawford in tomorrow’s opening round, admits he is “very underdone” going to the Open.

    “My last event was six weeks ago and I’ve just been practising and training in a very hot Japanese summer before coming over here,’’ said Kennedy.

    The 41-year-old won the 2013 Queensland PGA Championship at Toowoomba’s City Golf Club and had previously notched the 2011 New Zealand Open and 2010 West Australian Open.

    “Japan is probably the easiest place I’ve played tournament golf,’’ he said. “I feel like it is a second home. The crowds are great, travel is easy and I enjoy the people and the culture.’’

    Kennedy said his eldest daughter, aged nine, attended an international school where children from 13 different nationalities are in her class of 16 students.

    IMAGE: The Isuzu Qld Open Wednesday Pro Am - LtoR: Mike Yoda, Albert Sofia, Brad Kennedy and Chris Musch

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    Smith inspiring mates at Queensland Open
    Cameron Smith is Australian golf’s rising star and at just 22 years of age he is already an inspiration to his mates.

    Smith’s rise up the ranks of professional golf has been meteoric. He turned Professional at the Isuzu Queensland Open in 2013 and since then has finished tied 4th at the US Open, competed just last week at the PGA Championship and has sealed his PGA TOUR card for 2016.

    This week at the Isuzu Queensland Open another young Aussie, Taylor Macdonald (pictured), is turning Professional.

    Despite thinking he is old, at the tender age of 23; Macdonald lists his biggest motivator for a move into the play for pay ranks at his good mate Smith.

    “I was getting old, I’m 23 and my mate Cam Smith is killing it so that was a bit of a heads up to turn Pro,” said Macdonald, who played alongside Smith in the Queensland State Team.

    “Cam has worked really hard to get where he is and obviously it inspires a few of us to do exactly what he is doing.”

    “To get there is different but we all need someone to follow and he is the one.”

    Macdonald isn’t the only young gun on the PGA Tour of Australasia looking to follow in Cameron Smith footsteps.

    Geoff Drakeford and Todd Sinnott who have been competing on the European Challenge Tour are also impressed by what their former amateur competitor has achieved so quickly.

    Continue reading at
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    Queensland Open to relaunch summer of golf
    The Aussie summer of golf gets back underway this week with the Isuzu Queensland Open.

    The PGA Tour of Australasia has arrived at Brookwater Golf and Country Club for the Isuzu Queensland Open which celebrates its 90th anniversary this week.

    The honour board for the tournament reads like a who’s who of Australian golf with Australia’s first PGA Champion Jim Ferrier having won the title in 1934, 1938 and 1939.

    More recently Australia’s newest PGA Champion Jason Day finished the low amateur when he competed in the Queensland Open at Ipswich Golf Club.

    Other significant players of note to have won the Queensland Open in its 90 year history include recent World Golf Hall of Fame inductee David Graham (1985, 1987), Greg Norman (1983, 1985, 1986), Ian Baker-Finch (1990) and more recently Steven Bowditch (2004).

    This week some of the rising stars of Australian golf have assembled to try and add their name to the trophy.

    The field features Geoff Drakeford and Todd Sinnott who has been competing on the European Challenge Tour and Taylor MacDonald who makes his Professional debut this week.

    In recent years the Isuzu Queensland Open has kick started its Champion’s careers. Nick Cullen won the title in 2013 before going on to win the Australian Masters while last year’s winner Andrew Dodt went on to regain his European Tour card in 2015 and has already notched up a victory on the lucrative Tour.

    This week will also see the return of some past champions with Ryan Haller (2007) and Terry Price (1993) both in the field for the 90th anniversary.

    The Isuzu Queensland Open is the first of nine tournaments to be played around Australia and the South Pacific this year.

    The PGA Tour of Australasia’s Triple Crown is sure to have Australian sports fans captivated as it’s played across back-to-back weeks.

    It begins with the Australian Masters which returns to its spiritual home at Huntingdale Golf Club from 19-22 November.

    The next week sees newly crowned World Number 1 Jordan Spieth seeking to defend his title at the Emirates Australian Open at The Australian Golf Club from 26-29 November.

    Australia’s richest tournament, the Australian PGA Championship will then be contested at RACV Royal Pines Resort from 3-6 December.

    The PGA Tour of Australasia is also delighted to welcome the European Tour to the Gold Coast as the two tours co-sanction the tournament which is worth AU$1.75million.

    Another highlight of the 2015 season will be the second staging of the Fiji International which will see World Number 15 Matt Kuchar adding his star power to the field at Natadola Bay Championship Golf Course from 15-18 October.

    To see the full schedule of for the PGA Tour of Australasia please visit
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    Victorian Anthony Brown chasing another course record at Brookwater

    Brookwater course record holder Anthony Brown is chasing a repeat performance of last year’s opening round when the $110,000 Isuzu Queensland Open starts on Thursday.

    The 32-year old Victorian equalled Nick Cullen’s course record 65 to set the pace last year before finishing tied third, four shots behind winner Andrew Dodt.

    “I feel comfortable at Brookwater but that doesn’t mean it is easy for me,’’ Brown said, after completing today’s pro-am. “It is a very strong golf course ... you have to hit the ball in the right position on the fairways and into the greens.

    “There are some really diabolical greens if you get on the wrong side of them. The greens are relatively small. It is about hitting it to the right spot to give yourself makeable birdie putts.

    “But I really like how the course sets up off the tee. There is a lot of shot-shaping required and I like to play my golf like that.’’

    Brown’s last tournament was two months ago at the Thailand Open and he admitted he was “a bit scratchy’’ in today’s pro-am.

    His form in half a dozen Australasian PGA events was solid earlier in the year prior to campaigning in the China Tour. Brown finished eighth at the New Zealand PGA and had top-15 finishes at the Queensland and Victoria PGAs and Victoria Open.

    “The China Tour has suffered because of the state of their economy and we haven’t had as many events as expected. It’s a little frustrating and I’ve had more time at home than I would have liked this year.’’

    Brown’s career highlight came in 2012 when runner-up to surprise winner Daniel Popovic at the Australian PGA Championship at Coolum. His ability to fire a low round was evident at Coolum when he shot a sizzling 64 during the tournament.
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    Qld Open was the first tournament outing for partnership of Jason Day and caddie Col Swatton

    US PGA champion Jason Day has revealed his unique bond with caddie Col Swatton started at the Queensland Open at Ipswich 11 years ago.

    Although Swatton had been associated with Day at the Kooralbyn International School and then at Hills College at Jimboomba, it was not until the 2004 Queensland Open at Ipswich Golf Club that he actually caddied for the then 17-year-old.

    Following his emotional triumph in the US PGA Championship, Day said he had fond memories of the first time Swatton had been on his bag.

    “He’s come a long way because the first time he caddied for me at Ipswich Golf Club we had a pull cart. He was pulling a little trolley,’’ said Day.

    “It was the Queensland Open and he didn’t make it up the 18th fairway. He was that buggered he couldn’t make it up.

    “So now he can carry a 45 pound (20kgs) bag around the place ... he’s come a long way.’’

    Wet weather shortened the Queensland open to 54 holes in 2004 when Steven Bowditch shot 18-under to record his first win as a professional. Day shot 10-under to finish one stroke behind leading amateur Adam Blyth who subsequently turned professional and will contest the 2015 Isuzu Queensland Open which starts Thursday at Brookwater.

    Swatton has been much more than a caddie for Day. He is also coach, mentor and mate.

    “Col has been there for me since I was 12 and a half years old,’’ said Day. “For him to be on the bag for me from Ipswich to a major championship means so much.’’

    PHOTO: Jason Day pictured with Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale (centre)
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    Sunshine Coast amateur shoots six-under to lead qualifiers for Isuzu Queensland Open

    Peregian Springs amateur Charlie Dann shot a sizzling six-under 64 at Virginia Golf Club today to lead pre-qualifers for the Isuzu Queensland Open which starts at Brookwater on Thursday. 

    A total of 227 players contested pre-qualifying rounds at Virginia and Keperra Golf and Country Club for the final 10 spots in the Open field.

    Dann, 19, had a three stroke margin over professional Ian Esson with a further shot to Luke Whitbread, Jordan Mullaney and amateur Sam Daley.

    Another teenage amateur, James Macklin, 18, took the honours at Keperra with a four-under 68. Macklin, from the Pacific Golf Club and a member of last year's state junior team, had a one stroke margin over fellow amateur Matthew Smith with pros Alex Katholos, James Gibellini and amateur Jarrod Stirling qualifying with 70s.

    A further 10 players received tournament invitations to complete the field of 120. They are Terry Price, a dual Queensland Open winner in 1993 and '95, Australian Open runner-up Jean Louis Guepy, experienced Kiwi Gareth Pattison, Geoff Drakeford, Adam Groom, Ray Beaufils, Marcus Cain, Sam Eaves, amateur Travis Smyth and Taylor MacDonald.

    MacDonald, an outstanding Queensland amateur, will be making his professional debut.

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    Isuzu Queensland Open drives funds into charity

    Golfers at the 2015 Isuzu Queensland Open will show their support for Queenslanders affected by cancer this week as they tee off in the name of charity.

    Cancer Council Queensland has been named the official charity of the annual event, held on August 20-23 at Brookwater Golf and Country Club.

    Raffles and auctions will be held throughout the tournament to raise funds for CCQ’s work in cancer control, along with on-course collection buckets and a Cancer Council Queensland pop up shop.

    Golf Queensland spokesperson Claire Power said they hoped to raise funds for Cancer Council Queensland’s work while raising awareness about sun safety.

    “A number of staff have had melanoma scares recently and as golf is an outdoors sport we thought it was a great chance to raise awareness,” Ms Power said.

    “In Queensland there is the highest rate of skin cancer in the world, with around 370 new cases diagnosed every single day.

    “We hope to encourage golfers to be SunSmart while out on the golf course and show their support for the work of Cancer Council Queensland.”

    The Isuzu Queensland Open is in its 90th year and the event will see more than 300 golfers competing for the top title.

    Cancer Council Queensland spokesperson Katie Clift said the charity was proud to be named official charity of the 2015 Queensland Open.

    “Community support from events like the Queensland Open is instrumental to our work in cancer research, prevention and support,” Ms Clift said.

    “We commend Golf Queensland for their dedication to making a difference and encouraging golfers to reduce their risk of skin cancer by adhering to SunSmart policies.
    “Sun protection is required when the UV Index is three and above. In Queensland, the UV Index is three and above all year round, so sun protection is required in every season.

    “Even on cloudy winter days on the golf course, it’s important to slip, slop slap, seek and slide.

    “To Golf Queensland, the golfers and spectators - thank you for your generosity and support.”

    Cancer Council Queensland is an independent, community-based charity, the achievements of which are made possible by the generosity of Queenslanders.

    More information about Cancer Council Queensland is available at or via 13 11 20.
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    Nathan Green hits the crossroads at Isuzu Qld Open

    After more than 10 years in America and a victory on the US PGA Tour, Nathan Green will tackle this week’s Isuzu Queensland Open at the crossroads of his playing career.

    “You could call it a mid-life crisis,’’ said Green. “I really don’t know what happened, but I wasn’t playing great over there, wasn’t enjoying the travel and wasn’t 100 per cent motivated.

    “All I knew was that I really didn’t really have it anymore at that level. I have a young family and in the end it was an easy decision to come back home.

    “I’ve not really closed the door on playing but just have to see how things go for a while.’’

    New South Welshman Green, 40, achieved his US Tour victory in the 2009 Canadian Open where he defeated Retief Goosen in a sudden-death playoff.

    “That is something I’m pretty proud of because I never really thought I had to game to win on the PGA Tour,’’ he said.

    A popular character on Tour, the genial Green came close to a significant debut victory three years earlier when involved in a three-way playoff with Tiger Woods and dual Masters champion Jose Maria Olazabal at the 2006 Buick Invitational.

    He had par on the first play-off hole but was eliminated with Woods defeating Olazabal on the second sudden-death hole.

    “I played really well in my early days on the US Tour and competing against those really good players made me realise I could be competitive,’’ he said.

    Green also won the New Zealand Open in 2006 which took him into the world’s top-100 for the first time.

    He had made headlines early in his professional career with a $500,000 hole-in-one prize during the 2001 Australian Masters at Huntingdale.

    “I’d only been a pro for three years and it certainly opened doors,’’ he recalled. “It helped set me up, but there was a downside in that I lost my hunger for a couple of years.’’

    Since returning to Australia last year Green has undertaken a “bridging course” with the PGA of Australia and helps out in the pro shop of the Toronto Country Club on the lower north coast of NSW where his brother, Darren, is head professional.

    “All of my family are based around the area and I’m doing some coaching at the club,’’ he said.

    Green admits his preparation for the Queensland Open has not been ideal.

    “The only golf I’ve played has been the last four Saturday competitions at Toronto,’’ he said. “I haven’t had a lot of time to go out and hit balls and I’ve heard Brookwater is one of the toughest tournament courses we play.

    “I’m looking forward to a practice round on Tuesday and then Wednesday’s pro-am,’’ he said. “I’m looking forward to the week ... it will be good to get out with the boys again.’’
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    Golf Queensland Congratulates Jason Day

    Day: Major Championship Winner

    Golf Queensland chairman Peter Castrisos saluted Jason Day as a “superb golfer and tremendous role model” after the Queenslander’s inspirational victory in the US PGA Championship.

    Day, a member of state junior and senior teams during his amateur days, joined Greg Norman, Wayne Grady, Ian Baker-Finch and Adam Scott as Queenslanders to have won major championships.

    “It makes us very proud that a player who came through our junior and senior ranks can move on to the world stage and achieve the highest honours,’’ said Mr Castrisos.

    “Jason’s victory was inspirational for all of us at Golf Queensland and very satisfying to our coaches and high-performance managers. He always set a good example and is a tremendous role model for juniors, indeed all golfers.

    “It is very positive for the sport to have a number of our emerging players performing at the highest level. Cameron Smith is another young Queenslander with a great future.’’

    Smith, who has his 21st birthday tomorrow, finished fourth at this year’s US Open and earned a start in the 2016 US Masters.

    Day debuted for the Queensland senior amateur team as a 17-year old in 2004 and played again the following year when he was also leading amateur at the Queensland Open Championship. He turned professional in 2006.

    A teammate in the 2004 and 2005 Queensland teams was Andrew Dodt, winner of last year’s Isuzu Queensland Open who also won on the European PGA Tour this year.

    The 2015 Isuzu Queensland Open will be contested this week at Brookwater where the Australasian PGA Tour’s director of tournaments, Andrew Langford-Jones, also hailed Day’s magnificent victory.

    “We all knew that fame was not far away for Jason, even when he was a 17-year old. He was always something special,’’ said Langford-Jones.

    “It is great that he now has his name on the Wanamaker Trophy (US PGA Championship) and how far Jason goes from here is purely up to him.

    “Given the outstanding group of young talent in world golf, the Spieths, McIlroys and company, it is a very exciting time for the sport...”
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    Finally, Day grabs his major

    On the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan, Jason Day fulfilled his destiny today.

    The man from the Queensland town of Beaudesert, just north of Brisbane, won his first major championship at Whistling Straits, blowing away the field to take the United States PGA Championship.

    He becomes the fifth Australian -- after Jim Ferrier, David Graham, Wayne Grady and Steve Elkington -- to win the Wanamaker Trophy, and the first of his countrymen since Adam Scott's Masters triumph in 2013 to secure one of the four majors.

    The world No. 5, soon to rise higher in the rankings, closed with a brilliant 67 to win by three shots, holding off the new world No. 1 Jordan Spieth, South Africa's Branden Grace and Britain's Justin Rose. Spieth, the phenomenal 22-year-old American, finished outright second to overtake Rory McIlroy and climb to the top ranking in world golf for the first time.

    Day was rarely threatened on the final day, finishing at 20-under-par for the tournament, breaking the major championship record under-par score of 19-under set by Tiger Woods at the Open Championship in 2000.

    The Queenslander showed little emotion through most of the final day until he lagged his birdie putt at the 18th hole to tap-in distance, and then he burst into tears as he marked and waited for Spieth, knowing that it could not be ripped away from him now.

    Afterward, he embraced his American wife Ellie and his young son Dash behind the 18th green. The couple are expecting a second child soon.

    Day, 27 and now based in Columbus, Ohio, had endured a string of near-misses in the majors since 2010, with nine previous top-10 results and three runner-up finishes.

    He was tied for the lead through three rounds in both the US Open and the Open Championship at St Andrews earlier this year, but could not complete victories, including a heartbreaking finish at the Old Course where his putt for a playoff stopped short of the cup.

    Starting today with a two-shot lead, he immediately made a two-putt birdie at the par-five second to steady his nerves, and he was never headed all day, although South Africa's Branden Grace momentarily pulled within a shot as the Australian played the sixth hole.

    After his strong start, Day made further birdies at the fifth, sixth and seventh holes, the last of the three with a bombed 10-metre putt, set it up. By the time he made a nice par-save on the ninth and his main rival Jordan Spieth took a bogey, he had a four-shot lead, but there was much golf to be played.

    Day, flanked by his mentor and caddie Col Swatton, would not waver this time. At the par-five 11th, he bombed a 350-metre drive, hit the green in two and made another birdie. At 12, he made a fine up-and-down from a greenside trap to save par, then at the par-four 14th he delivered a killer blow to Spieth, making birdie from three metres to reach 20-under-par.

    A bogey after finding the fairway trap at the 15th was a spoiler, and his lead came back to three shots, but at the par-five 16th he hit a peerless long iron second shot to the green and ventured a glance to Swatton as though to say: 'Almost there'. Day made birdie, and Spieth birdied there too, but the American was running out of holes.

    Day held his three-shot buffer to the 18th, and piped his drive, then hit the green in regulation. There would be no glitches; it was breathtaking golf on a difficult course.

    "I didn't expect I was going to cry,'' he said at the presentation. "A lot of emotion has come out just because I've been so close, so many times in major championships and just fallen short. Just really close. And to be able to play the way I did today, especially in tough conditions, especially with Jordan in my group. I mean, I could tell that he was the favorite, just to be able to play the way I did, finish the way I did was something special.''

    Day had visualised the moment for years, since he won the Australian boys' championship in 2004, and the world junior. He wants to be world No. 1, and he is close now.

    With the barriers down, who knows how many majors he can win? He has virtually no weakness in his game, and he sits comfortably with McIlroy and Spieth among that cluster of great, young players who have taken the mantle from a tiring Tiger Woods.

    Arise, Australia, and acknowledge a new champion of world sports.
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    It's your time to play! Juniors help open the Qld Open

    Queensland’s future golfers were on hand to officially launch the 2015 Isuzu Queensland Open and celebrate 90 years of the Championship.

    The junior golfers were on course at Brookwater Golf and Country Club trying their hand at the championship venue before the Professionals tee off on Thursday.

    Golf Queensland chair Peter Castrisos said it was very fitting to celebrate the milestone with our future golfers.

    “It is great way to showcase the Queensland Open and Brookwater to our junior golfers. “A future Queensland Open champion might just be here,” Mr Castrisos said.

    The juniors today played a modified 9-hole course under the Pee Wee Pennant competition run by Golf Queensland.

    Mr Castrisos said 90 years has seen many champions go onto international success.
    “Many of our great golfers including Norman Von Nida, Greg Norman, Ian Baker-Finch and Peter Senior have won the Queensland Open,” Mr Castrisos said.

    “In fact, Von Nida won his first Queensland Open in 1935 and then it was the last tournament he won in 1961 before retiring.”

    “We look forward to seeing the next Queensland Open champion produce great things on the world stage.”

    The $110,000 Isuzu Queensland Open will be held at Brookwater Golf and Country Club from August 20-23. Admission is free.
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    For the Love of the Game: Anthony Quayle
    TWENTY-five years have passed since a golfer wearing short pants and long socks was the last amateur to win the Queensland Open Championship.

    Stuart Appleby, then a 20year-old from country Victoria, fired a final-round 66 at Brisbane Golf Club to defeat Adelaide professional Mike Sprengel.

    Appleby's amateur status prevented him receiving the modest first prize of $3600, but the blond-haired Victorian had his name engraved on the T B Hunter Cup alongside golf luminaries including Greg Norman, Ian Baker-Finch, David Graham, Kel Nagle, Jim Ferrier, Norman Von Nida, Peter Senior and Billy Dunk.

    Appleby might have missed collecting a cheque in 1991, but he went on to win an Australian Open, notched nine victories on the US PGA Tour and earned $35 million prizemoney in a stellar professional career.

    Next week the Isuzu Queensland Open, starting at Brookwater Golf and Country Club on Thursday, will celebrate its 90th year.

    Another 20-year old amateur, Anthony Quayle, is dreaming of emulating the deeds of Appleby.

    Quayle won't be wearing shorts and long socks, but instead the uniform of the Golf Queensland state senior team of which he's been a member for two years.

    "Last year's Queensland Open was my first tournament playing against the pros and I really took a lot out of the experience," Quayle said.

    "I tried to pick the brains of two of the professionals I played with and tried to learn about their careers and how they approached things.

    "It was interesting the way they managed their games around Brookwater."

    Quayle made the cut at the 2014 Open and his career has accelerated with wins in the Tasmanian Amateur in February and the Pacific Northwest Amateur in Oregon last month during a nine-week American campaign.

    "I went off to America on my own with a goal of learning more about the game," he said.

    "My attitude was that whatever happened, win or lose, I'd come back with more knowledge and a better player.

    "I travelled on my own, stayed on my own and learnt how to manage a lot of things."

    Quayle played seven tournaments in the US, finishing runner-up at Birmingham, Alabama, as well as winning in Oregon.

    He returned on Wednesday and went straight to the practice range at Sanctuary Cove on the Gold Coast where he also works.

    "The job at Sanctuary Cove, working in the golf shop and picking up balls on the range, means I can earn money to keep my dream going," he said.

    "I've come back from the States with my confidence on a bit of a high and I'm looking forward to Brookwater."

    Quayle grew up in Gove in the Northern Territory, where his father worked in mining and his mother operated a hairdressing business from the family home.

    "None of my family plays golf," he said. "When I was six years old we used to drive past the little nine-hole course at Gove and I wrote Mum and Dad a letter asking for a set of golf clubs for my seventh birthday. They went to the local newsagent and bought me a plastic Looney Tunes golf set and I built my own six-hole course around our house.

    "I put old baked beans cans in the ground for the holes and after that graduated to playing at Gove Golf Club. When I was 14 my parents could see I was passionate about the game and made some significant sacrifices to send me to board at Hills International College at Jimboomba.

    "I'd always been passionate but being part of the Golf Academy at Hills gave me more focus and direction."

    Quayle gained selection in the Queensland Academy of Sport golf squad last year where he is coached by high performance manager Tony Meyer. "Anthony is a very athletic kid who is extremely hard working and professional," Meyer said.

    "He still has a couple of years to go in his development and his next step is to win a big event and push for selection in the national amateur squad.

    "His effort to win in America was really commendable. " Quayle is one of 10 amateurs in the confirmed field of 103 players for next week's Open, with another 17 players (seven sponsor's invitees and 10 pre-qualifiers) to be added.

    A record 227 players will contest pre-qualifying at Keperra and Virginia on Monday.

    By Bernie Pramber, The Courier-Mail

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    2015 Men's Country Week wraps up
    Monday & Tuesday – Stroke

    Scott Warren (Gin Gin) has won the stroke event of Queensland Men’s Country Week at McLeod and Oxley Golf Club’s.

    Warren fired a 1-under par round 71 at McLeod to hold the joint lead with Matt Lejeune (Gatton) and Grant Rasmussen (City).

    Warren was able to continue his good scoring from the first round to return a second round four-under par-68 in perfect conditions at Oxley, and enough to claim this year’s event by two shots.

    This was a role reversal from last year’s event as the 2014 champion Adam Gemmell (Ipswich) finished runner-up after firing a consistent second round three under par-69.

    Thursday – Foursomes

    A blustery Indooroopilly Golf Club hosted the Foursomes section with 56 pairings vying for their Divisional Titles. 

    Division 1 was won by Marty Manning (Ipswich) and Ben Daniels (Sandy Gallop), who, despite having a double and a triple bogey in the opening 4 holes, closed with a 78 to claim a 2 shot victory. 

    Finishing second on count back were Toowoomba’s Chris Webster and Jason McWilliam.

    Ryan Slack and Jeremy Zahl (Gayndah) returned a fine 70.5 to win the Nett section from Chinchilla’s Glen Gray and Deon Hunt (74.5).

    Scoring was tough however Richard Marschke’s (Toogoolawah) and Robert Yeo’s (Laidley) gross score of 92 was enough for  a 3 shot victory over Country Week stalwarts John Smith (Craignish) and Michael Treay (Blackwater).

    Division 2 Nett winners were perennial contenders, Chris Bath (Rosewood) and Barry Thoms (Ipswich), with a great score of 68. A distant 8.5 shots behind in second was the Biggenden pairing of Ivan Groves and Brett Flanders. 

    Friday – Fourball

    Blessed with yet another beautiful Queensland winter day, players headed to Redcliffe for the final day of Country Week, the Fourball Championship.

    The leader board was tight all morning with many scores around the 40-43 point regions. With only a few groups remaining on course, Tod Mathews (Capricorn) and Clay Jacobson (Maroochy River) (pictured) signed for 44 points and an eventual 1 point win. Jacobson would go on to describe that the all-important point was secured with Mathews holing a 4 foot downhill putt on the last… with his eyes on his partner rather than the ball!

    Finishing runners up on count back were Ryan Slack and Brent Chambers from Gayndah, on 43 points, with third place taken out by Peter Griffin (Maroochy River) and Shane Eastell (Sandy Gallop).

    A massive thank you is extended to all four hosts (McLeod, Oxley, Indooroopilly and Redcliffe) for the fantastic manner in which their courses were presented and the hospitality extended to the Country participants. Players are already booking their 2016 trip!

    This week would not be the same without the sponsors, and City Golf Club and Motel are to be congratulated and applauded for their continued support of country golf. They do a wonderful job promoting country golf, as well as supporting the annual Sand Green Championships.

    For all results from the 2015 Men's Country Week, see below:

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    McLeod leads Aussie charge

    Jake McLeod leads a strong Aussie contingent after the first round of the Western Amateur in Illinois.

    McLeod fired five birdies and two mid-round bogeys en route to a three-under-par 69 at Rich Harvest Farms, west of Chicago, to trail joint leaders Dawson Armstrong and Jose Mendez by just two strokes.

    The Queenslander, fresh from the Golf Australia national camp in Texas, is tied sixth in a week in which the format means it’s important to be near the top.

    West Australian Curtis Luck is tied eighth after at two under after a mercurial round featuring five birdies and an eagle, but marred by three bogeys and a double.

    Queenslander Cory Crawford was also adventurous in a round of 71 that leaves him T18. The national squad member made five birdies, but also threw in a costly double-bogey on the 16th.

    He’s joined on that score by Victorian Ryan Ruffels who uncharacteristically made five bogeys in his opening round, but offset that with an eagle three on the last hole and four birdies.

    Victorian Ben Eccles and New South Welshman Harrison Endycott are also handy, both with even-par 72s that left them T36.

    Victorian Lucas Herbert made a double-bogey on the first hole, but fought back to fire a one-over 73 that left him T52.

    But it wasn’t all great news for the Aussie contingent with Sydneysider Cam Davis unable to find his normal rhythm and Perth’s Jarryd Felton enduring a quadruple-bogey eight as both signed for 76s that leaves them in trouble at T96.

    Queenslander Taylor Macdonald suffered through two triple-bogeys on his back nine en route to a 77, but New South Welshman Travis Smyth had the day’s hard-luck story with a sextuple-bogey 10 on the par-four 17th as part of his otherwise fine 78.

    The Western Amateur is played from Tuesday-Saturday in the United States with two 18-hole strokeplay rounds before a cut to 44 and ties.

    There is then 36 holes of strokeplay on Thursday, with the low 16 advancing to matchplay.

    On Friday, two 18-hole matches narrow the field to four semi-finalists before two more matches on Saturday to determine the champion.

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    Dodt, Cullen dream big at WGC

    Australian underdogs Andrew Dodt and Nick Cullen line up at the World Golf Championships Bridgestone Invitational knowing one good week could change their lives.

    While world No.4 Jason Day and former winner of the event Adam Scott will spearhead the Australian charge at Firestone Country Club in the lucrative no-cut 77-man field, Dodt and Cullen find themselves on the brink of a life-altering opportunity.

    Dodt, a two-time European Tour winner finds his way into the field after a win at the True Thailand Classic back in February while Cullen booked his ticket with his Australian Masters triumph late last year.

    And while the fans in Ohio may not know much about the 1001-1 shots the pair hope they do by weeks end.

    “It’s only my second world golf event so I am still trying to get used to it all. I play regularly on the European tour but its obviously not as big as this,” Dodt, who played in the 2010 WGC HSBC Champions event in China said.

    “It’s so easy to get caught up in the range in this guy, that guy, that player, that coach, that manager but I just have to stay in my own bubble and do what I have to do without trying to be distracted.”

    The 29-year-old might find it easier than normal to do so after drawing the lone single person tee time over the first two rounds and he spent time with Cullen and Day in a practice round to garner as much advice as possible.

    Sighting Cameron Smith, who leveraged a fifth place finish at a world golf event late last year into what will eventually be a US PGA tour card next season, Dodt knows what is at stake.

    “A big result here would be huge, it would just be big for my confidence,” he said. “Playing with Jason it is good to get a feel and a vibe for what level I need to get my game at.

    “I would like to be thereabouts on Sunday, that would be nice.”

    For Cullen, a hand injury has hampered his preparation for the biggest start of his career but he remains confident he has what it takes to put a cat amongst the pigeons.

    Having only played once in nearly four months, where he withdrew after making the cut, the odds are stacked against him.

    “I did a real good number on my left hand, bruising a metacarpal back in April hitting off golf mats at a driving range when the weather was a bit average. It is still bothering me a bit but this event is too big to not play,” the 31-year-old world No.318 said.

    “It’s just nice to be able to come into an event against the big boys with no cut and play with a bit of freedom, especially not having played much in the last few months.

    “I think anyone playing these events has the ability to win it. You want to be in contention Sunday in every golf tournament you go to, that’s the judge of being successful for the week, so I would love to be around Sunday and be up there competing for it.”

    For Cullen the key will be getting in position off the tee.

    “I just need a bit of confidence off the tee because the short game feels great and my putting feels great so that’s half of it taken care off,” he said.

    “The swing off the tee hasn’t felt too great so I am trying to find that but I came into the Aussie Masters not feeling to good about it and it worked out well that week.”

    Story: Ben Everill / Golf Australia

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    Smith provided PGA Championship opportunity
    Cameron Smith’s dream year continues next week when he tees up in the PGA Championship at Whistling Straits.

    Smith burst onto the international golf stage after an eagle at the 18th hole at the US Open catapulted him up the leaderboard and launched his career.

    “I didn’t think it would all happen this quick, but it’s definitely good that it has,” said Smith who has all but secured his PGA TOUR card for 2016 as well as places in the fields of the US Open and US Masters.

    “At the start of the year I wanted to learn as much as I could and get as much as I could from playing in America but to have achieved this in a year is definitely unexpected.”

    Smith, who is just 21-years-old, will have another opportunity to shine on a major stage, thanks to a special invite from the PGA of America he will compete in the PGA Championship.

    Taking it all in his stride, Smith is remaining true to character and is not over-awed at the upcoming experience but does believe he will be better prepared to deal with the pressures of a Major Championship the second time around.

    “I don’t think the US Open has changed my expectations, I never really expect much of myself, I’ll obviously go to the US PGA to contend but I don’t really expect anything,” added Smith.

    “This time around I know what to expect with the pressure and the crowds and things like that.”

    “But it’s just a game of golf at the end of the day, you just have to go and do what you do.”

    Continue reading at 

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    Silver lining to special efforts

    Australia’s Special Olympic golfers are bringing home a pair of silver medals and so much more from Los Angeles.

    Aside from their outstanding achievements in standing on the dais, Darren Tait and Kathryn Wilson both shone in the highest pressure environment they’ll likely face in their sporting careers.

    Coach Jeremy Smith was ecstatic with both series performances with Canberran Tait and Queenslander Wilson dramatically slashing their best previous scores.

    Tait, 47, playing in the level four nine-hole event, entered with a previous best score of 58.

    So Smith was thrilled that in three of the four tournament rounds, Tait matched or bettered that mark with rounds of 58-61-56-54 for a 229 total that was just two outside the gold medal mark of Korean Gaeun Kim.

    And not to be denied, Wilson matched those remarkable achievements in the level five 18-hole strokeplay event.

    Wilson, who counts fellow Queenslanders Adam Scott, Karrie Webb and Jason Day among her heroes, had never shot better than 92 in a major competition.

    So with extraordinary rounds of 89-83-86-84, she proudly took home silver with a total of 342 behind only Zimbabwe’s Tungamirai Mudyanadzo.

    The Australian team fared superbly in Los Angeles with 76 athletes in 12 sports combining for an extraordinary haul of 23 gold, 19 silver and 18 bronze medals.

    But, as evidenced by the Aussie golfing pair, perhaps even a grander achievement was the total of 15 “personal bests” among the team.

    Story: Mark Hayes / Golf Australia

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    Jack Sullivan qualifies for NSW Open

    Jack Sullivan’s play-off victory in the 2015 Twin Towns Amateur Open gained the talented Queenslander automatic entry into this year’s NSW Open which will again be played at Stonecutters Ridge Golf Club from 12-15 November.

    Sullivan said he was excited and relieved after winning the sudden death playoff on the first hole against Jack Weston.

    "I was very happy to win and qualify for the NSW Open. I actually played in the Open two years ago, and hopefully I can play as well as I did last time at Castle Hill and this time become the leading amateur."

    Sullivan played his first professional event in the 2013 NSW Open firing an opening round of 66 to be co-leader with Aron Price and Victorian Michael Choi.

    The 62nd Twin Towns Amateur Open Championship was played over 36 holes at the Coolangatta & Tweed Heads Golf Club in tricky conditions with slick greens and a testing wind.

    Sullivan (70, 70) and Weston (72, 68), both fired rounds of 4 under par for the 36 hole event.

    Nicole James, Coolangatta & Tweed Heads Golf Club's Golf Operations Manager, said, "It is a wonderful opportunity for Jack to get a start in the NSW Open and we are thrilled to have the winner of the Twin Towns Amateur Open gaining automatic entry into such a prestigious event.

    "The support from our local MP Geoff Provest, Member for Tweed, Stuart Fraser, CEO Golf NSW, and Neil Steinhardt, GCDGA President, was brilliant," Ms James added.

    In addition to winning the Open, Jack also became the 2015 Gold Coast District Golf Association Champion, a closed event to players who are members of any golf club affiliated with the District. Jack hails from the Palmer Gold Cost Golf Club enabling him to triumph in both categories.

    For the 2015 Twin Towns Open Final Results go to:

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    Day's Olympic interest piques

    A trip to former NBA star Michael Redd’s house has put Jason Day in an Olympic frame of mind.

    The Queenslander, a good friend of the Olympic basketballer, said to see avid golfer Redd’s gold medal from the 2008 Beijing Games had piqued his own interest in Rio 2016.

    “I had a buddy (Redd, who) represented Team USA and I was at his house and looking at his medal and it was just an amazing piece,” Day said.

    “It's history being able to look back on it and tell a story one day and what you did, where it was, what happened.

    “It would be a good moment just to capture in time.”

    Day, 27, said he’d once thought of the Olympics as a realm of amateur athletes, but as golf prepares for its first Games appearance since Paris in 1904, he’s hot to pull on the green and gold in Brazil next year.

    “One thing that I do want to do is I want to represent my country in the Olympics. It would be amazing to win (a) medal,” Day enthused.

    “To have the opportunity of representing your country and going to the (opening) ceremony and winning a medal would be pretty neat just looking back on it.”

    The newly crowned Canadian Open champion admitted solving scheduling issues in 2016 would be critical.

    The Open Championship, Canadian Open, US PGA Championship and Olympics are likely to fall in successive weeks in a crowded 2016 calendar.

    “Looking at the schedule right now with the two majors and Canada, that's going to be tough – a tough stretch for me,” Day said.

    “But I'm looking forward to having a look at the schedule and picking my tournaments.”

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    Women's senior: Chasing the champion quartet

    Can anyone break the domination of Australia’s top quartet of women’s senior amateurs?

    Entries are now open for the Australian Women’s Senior Amateur at Perth’s Gosnells Golf Club from October 26-30.

    But only twice since 2000 – and not since 2006 – has anyone other than Robyn Puckett, Sylvia Donohoe, Jacqui Morgan and Josie Ryan won the event.

    And they’re all likely starters again this year, putting the heat on the next wave to stand up.

    Defending champion Puckett, from Queensland, will aim to win her third title, while seven-time champion Donohoe, from NSW, will hope to add another after finishing runner-up last year.

    Morgan, from New South Wales and the No.1 ranked player on the Australian Women’s Senior Amateur Rankings, will again be among the favourites, while Queenslander Ryan wants to add her 2003 and 2013 titles. 

    The championship will be played over 36 holes qualifying, followed by elimination match play.

    The leading 16 players will qualify for the major championship, in addition to the top eight players in four age divisions qualifying for their own age match play flights.

    To keep things interesting, there will also be a handicap competition in conjunction with the first two rounds of qualifying, as well as a state teams event to enhance the interstate rivalry.

    Off the course, players will be able to renew friendships at the cocktail reception on Tuesday evening and conclude with the presentation reception on Friday afternoon, all included in the entry fee.

    And again, any player who introduces a friend to the championship for the first time will go into the draw to win a prize for a $200 voucher to spend at the Gosnells Golf Club pro shop.

    Click here for further information regarding the Australian Women’s Senior Amateur -

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    Blenkey victorious at the Qld Senior Women’s Amateur Championship
    Jill Blenkey (Newcastle) has won the Queensland Senior Women's Amateur Championship at Maroochy River Golf Club on the Sunshine Coast.


    The New South Welshwoman won her final match 2&1 over opponent Nikki Haines (Moore Park). 

    In Wednesday's semi-final, Haines eliminated leading qualifier Jacqui Morgan (Monash) 2&1, as well as four-time Queensland Senior Women’s Amateur Champion, Wendy O’Connell (North Lakes), in the previous match.

    Jill Blenkey eliminated last year’s champion and third place qualifier, Josie Ryan (Headland), in her first match 1Up. It was Blenkey’s continued consistency all week in the match play format that allowed her to remain undefeated and take out this year's event in stunning fashion. 

    Vicki Jones (Bribie Island) was victorious in Division 1 of the 55-64 years match play final, while Gwen Clutterbuck (Oxley) took out the Division 2 title.

    In the over 65 age group, Faye Payne (Caloundra) proved too strong, winning 3&2 Division 1, and Division 2 was won by Maroochy River member, Clem Sutherland.

    Congratulations must go to Maroochy River Golf Club for again hosting this year's event. 

    For full results, click here.

    To read the wrap report for the Queensland Women's Mid-Amateur Championship, click here.

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    The Queensland Senior Men's Amateur heads interstate, again

    Victorian Ian Frost (Bendigo) shot the best final round of 74 to claim the 2015 Queensland Senior Men’s Amateur Championship at Southport Golf Club by five shots from repeat runner-up Sam Christie (Indooroopilly) and Barry Shannon (Wanganui).

    The leaderboard was tight heading into the final round with 10 players within five shots of pace maker Barry Shannon. 

    Through the first nine holes of the last round, Peter Hannah had assumed the lead from Frost, with Shannon, Christie and Darryl Hearsch within three shots. 

    When both Frost and Hannah double bogeyed the long par 3 12th hole, the title race was even closer. 

    However, a crucial point came on the very next hole, with Frost making a birdie 4 to Hannah’s 7. And Shannon and Christie weren’t to be denied, with birdies of their own. 

    The closing four holes of Southport are demanding and Frost’s class as the highest ranked Australian Senior in the field, shone through, parring his way home. 

    He couldn’t be matched, with eventual runner-up Christie closing his round with a bogey and a double bogey. 

    Shannon also found grief and couldn’t apply pressure to Frost, as he bogeyed the final four holes.

    Home course knowledge paid dividends for Ray Geary as he claimed the Overall Nett and also combined with fellow Southport members, Jeff Wood and Tony Irvine, to win the Club Teams Challenge.

    Players enjoyed three spectacular days at Southport with first class course conditions and hospitality. 

    Course superintendent Stuart Moore and his team are to be congratulated for the outstanding manner in which the course was presented and, as always, thanks are extended to Steve Lamerton and his staff for the welcoming atmosphere at Southport Golf Club. 

    In 2016, the event will head North to Bribie Island. 

    To view all results, click

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    Jenkins wins the Queensland Women's Mid-Amateur Championship

    Oxley member Jess Jenkins (pictured) has won the 2015 Queensland Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship at Maroochy River Golf Club.

    Jenkins fired a final round of 81 (+9) to finish five shots clear of her nearest rival, returning scores of 74,82 and 81 to finish 237 for the Championship.

    Wantima Golf Club member Katrina Van Trier's three-round total of 242 was good enough to take out second place. Van Trier, whose name appears on the trophy four times (2010, 2012, 2013, 2014), fell just short of claiming her fifth title after trailing by two shots overnight. 

    Robyn Callaghan (Oxley) won the Nett division after three days of great scoring which included an eagle on the par-5 eleventh hole.

    For full results in the Women’s Mid-Amateur, click here.

    In the Queensland Senior Women’s Amateur the top placed qualifier, Jacqui Morgan (Monash), knocked out eighth qualifier Susan Jones (Headland) in convincing fashion, winning 10&8 to progress through to the next round.

    The four players to progress through to the semi-finals of the knock-out match play in the Championship flight- Jacqui Morgan (Monash), Nikki Haines (Moore Park), Rosalind Fisher (Gosnells) and Jill Blenkey (Newcastle) will vy for a spot in the final on Wednesday 29th July at the Maroochy River Golf Club.

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    Play-off decides championship

    Two stars of Mount Coolum’s winning Sunshine Coast Pennant team have fought out a three-hole play-off before 23-year-old Stephan Scheepers was crowned 2015 club champion.

    Scheepers and TJ King finished the four rounds of the championships on 307, 19 over the card. In a fluctuation of fortunes over the three play-off holes Scheepers survived, with two pars and a bogey.

    Two rounds of 79 over the two-weekend championships ruined the chances of 18-year-old King, one of two scratch markers to contest the titles. But he fired an impressive final-round 74 last Sunday to put him in the play-off.

    Scheepers started the championships well with two rounds of 75, but carded 78 and 79 on the final weekend. However, a spectacular eagle on the par five 17th on Sunday was enough to force the play-off. 

    Two of the club’s promising juniors, Lochie Coleborn and Zac Quirk, were unable to contest the championships because they were playing in the Queensland State Schoolboys championships in Cairns at the weekend. Both were also members of the winning Pennants team, as was Todd Balkin, another who did not contest the championships.

    Other members of the winning Pennants team, Stephan’s twin brother Tiaan and Scott Mitchell, finished sixth and eighth respectively. 

    However Tiaan is the first twin to have his name on the honour board. He and perennial Mount Coolum winner Jean Brkic recently teamed to win the Mixed Foursomes championship.

    Charles Brkic won B grade with a 14 stroke victory over Mike Beal; Kyle Sunderland scored a 17 stroke win in C grade from Darryl Hicks; Ryan Stephenson came from behind to beat Jared Barr for the junior club championship; and Grant Airey is the 2015 veteran’s champion, beating the long winning run of KR Smith. 

    The respective grade nett winners were: A grade, Grant Airey; B grade, Morris Barnes; C grade, Terry Hyde. 

    Photo: Stephan Scheepers looks on as his opponent TJ King putts during their play-off.

    Story: Tony Durkin

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    Day triumphs to win Canadian Open

    Jason Day has vaulted to No.4 in the world rankings after winning the Canadian Open.

    The Queenslander closed with a spectacular hat-trick of birdies, capped by a fist pump and a roar on the 72nd hole at Glen Abbey Golf Club when he made a similar putt to the one that would have sent him into The Open Championship playoff last week.

    On that occasion, the 27-year-old left his birdie putt centimetres short, but he made no such mistake this morning.

    "I got the ball to the hole this time which was nice," Day said with a wry grin after sinking a 7m birdie putt on the par-5 last hole.

    “The first thing I said was I’ve got to get to the hole this time, that’s what I said in my head.

    "There's no better feeling than coming down to the wire and contending with these guys. It was just back and forth all day, and I'm so glad that I got that putt in.

    "To be able to do that it just gives me a lot more confidence going in to the rest of the season."

    Day, who had been in contention for the past two majors, the US Open and The Open at St Andrews, fired a final round four-under-par 68 to finish 17 under the card to beat American Bubba Watson by a shot.

    A further stroke back was hometown hope David Hearn who was aiming to become the first Canadian winner in 61 years.

    It was Day's second victory on the US PGA Tour this year after he won the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in February and showed he had quickly overcome the disappointment of St Andrews despite playing the final 36 holes of the Old Course without a bogey.

    Day birdied three of his first seven holes to briefly snatch the outright lead before handing it back with dropped shots on the eighth and ninth.

    He then made six pars to start the back nine before unleashing his birdie blitz.

    Day is the sixth Australian to win the Canadian Open, joining Joe Kirkwood (1933), Jim Ferrier (1950, 1951), Kel Nagle (1964), Greg Norman (1984, 1992) and Nathan Green (2009).

    He will now take a break before beginning preparations for next month's final major of the year, the US PGA Championship at Whistling Straits,

    "I feel good, I feel really good. I'm going to take next week off," Day said.

    "The last two weeks have been a big grind for me, but it's all worth it.

    "All the hard work that I put into it, it's my fourth win of my career and hopefully I'll have many more.

    "But right now I'm just so proud to be the Canadian Open champion."

    Rising amateur Ryan Ruffels, playing on a sponsor’s invitation, didn’t make the third round cut after opening with a spectacular 66.

    In his debut on the US PGA Tour, the 17-year-old dual Australian junior champion was in a tie for third after the first round before he slumped over the next two rounds and fell foul of the Tour's Rule 78 regulation.

    The secondary cut stipulates that if more than 78 players remain in the field after 54 holes, those beyond that number cannot play in the final round.

    Story: Mark Hayes / Golf Australia

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    Opening doors for amateurs

    Monday pre-qualifying is a component of every major golf tournament and the 2015 Isuzu Queensland Open is no different.

    Entries for this year’s pre-qualifying close on Thursday, 30th July, and male amateurs and professionals are eligible. Amateur golfers must have an Australian handicap of 4.4 strokes or lower to contest pre-qualifying rounds to be held over 18 holes on Monday 17 August, at Keperra and Virginia Golf Clubs.

    For amateur golfers, the experience of testing themselves in pre-qualifying can be invaluable. They play in competition against professionals with all players in pursuit of a place in the field for the 72-hole Isuzu Queensland Open at Brookwater from August 20-23 2015.

    Ten places in the final field are available to pre-qualifiers and last year four amateurs made the grade - Blake Proverbs, Terrence Ng, Shae Wools-Cobb (at Keperra) and Andy Chu (Virginia).

    Last year 198 players contested pre-qualifying at the two venues.  

    Wools-Cobb, from the Sunshine Coast, ultimately finished tied 24th in the quality Open field and was third leading amateur behind Kade McBride and Taylor MacDonald. 

    Wools-Cobb, 19, will be exempt from pre-qualifying this year as he is a member of the State Team. He is in good form, having travelled north to win the Far North Queensland Championship at Mareeba earlier this month.

    Proberts, 17, tied 38th last year and Chu also made the cut to finish tied 61st. Proberbs is exempt for 2015 (State Team member) but Chu intends to tackle pre-qualifying again.

    Defending champion Andrew Dodt, who won on the European Tour after last year’s triumph at Brookwater, has not ruled himself out of playing next month. He is attempting to qualify for the US PGA Championship, but should he fall short a return to Brookwater is on the cards.

    Dodt, a former top Queensland amateur, carded seven-under last year to defeat South Australian Tom Bond by two strokes with fellow Queenslander Cameron Smith a further. Smith also made the Queensland Open form look special when he shared fourth place at the US Open in June, pocketing A$524,000 and earning his US PGA Tour card for the remainder of the year.

    Entries for the Isuzu Queensland Open close 5pm, Thursday 30th July. Enter here:

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    Two golfers represent Australia at Special Olympics

    Two Australian golfers are representing their country at the Special Olympics in Los Angeles starting this weekend.

    In what is billed as the biggest sporting event in the world this year, 7000 athletes from 177 countries are competing across 24 sports in the World Summer Games for people with intellectual disabilities.

    Golf is represented by Kathryn Wilson, from Queensland, and Darren Tait, from Canberra. Jeremy Smith, from Queensland, is the coach.

    Wilson counts Adam Scott, Karrie Webb and Jason Day among her heroes. “It feels very good to be going to the World Games and I am very proud to know that I will wear the green and gold,’’ she said.

    Tait is the oldest athlete on the team at 47 years old. He says: “The most exciting thing about representing Australia is doing well for my team.”

    The golf competition at the Games is to be held at the Harding municipal golf course and the Wilson municipal golf course, both owned and operated by the City of Los Angeles.

    The team is in Huntington Beach for training and cultural experiences as part of the Host Town program. They will head to their athlete village in Los Angeles on Saturday in preparation for the Opening Ceremony on Sunday at 11am AEST, with Michelle Obama, wife of the US President Barack Obama, performing the duties.

    Overall, there are 76 Australian athletes competing in 12 sports.

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    Day gets back on the horse

    Jason Day is bound to put another near-miss at the Open Championship last weekend behind him quickly.

    The Queenslander took Golf Canada’s charter flight out of St Andrews to Oakville, Ontario on Sunday night and tees it up in the Canadian Open tomorrow.

    Day, who finished a shot out of the three-man playoff to log his ninth top-10 finish in a major, was asked at a media conference about his problems with vertigo.

    The world No. 9 is accustomed to fielding the interest after his collapse during the second round at the US Open at Chambers Bay.

    Since then the problem has been diagnosed as benign positional vertigo, an inner-ear invection. Day is taking medication for the problem, which was under control at St Andrews, but there is no guarantee that the problem will not return.

    “I sound like a doctor,” he told the media conference. “I feel like I’m in a conference right now. I mean, if anyone has benign positional vertigo, I can fix you.’’

    Day, who ended up tied-fourth in the Open, says he needs to be patient.

    “It’s a process, but it’s something I can be patient with because golf is kind of a marathon, not a sprint,” he said. “I’m not on a time limit, which is great. I have all the time in the world.’’

    Day is one of seven Australians in the field for the Canadian Open.

    Golf Australia elite amateur squad member Ryan Ruffels is one who is playing in the field on a sponsor’s invitation, continuing the Victorian’s foray into the big professional events. He recently played in the French Open on the European Tour, missing the cut.

    Ruffels, 17, has won consecutive Australian boys’ titles in the past two years.

    Story: Golf Australia / Martin Blake

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    Scott commits again to Emirates Australian Open

    Australia’s US Masters champion and former world No. 1 player, Adam Scott, is returning to compete in the Emirates Australian Open at The Australian in November.

    Golf Australia confirmed today that Scott, the world No. 11, would tee it up in the nation’s most prestigious tournament from November 26-29 in Sydney.

    Scott, 35, came close to winning the United States Open recently with his dynamic finishing 64, eventually tieing for fourth at Chambers Bay, reuniting with his longtime caddie, Steve Williams. He also tied-10th at the Open Championship at St Andrews over the weekend.

    Adam is one of Australia’s all-time great players; the 2013 US Masters Champion, the only victory by an Australian at Augusta National; a multiple winner of top-level tournaments around the world and a former World No. 1.

    The Queenslander won the Australian Open at New South Wales Golf Club in 2009, eclipsing the field by five shots at the tournament’s only visit to that venue. He has been a regular contender in the country’s most famous tournament, finishing fifth at The Australian last year, runner-up to Rory McIlroy in 2013, 14th at The Lakes in 2012 and fourth in 2011.

    “The Australian Open is a tournament that I value highly, Sydney is a great city and The Australian Golf Club is an excellent venue for Championship golf. I am really looking forward to competing to win my National Open once again.’’ said Adam. 

    Golf Australia’s chief executive, Stephen Pitt, said Scott’s appearance would provide a foundation for what should be a white hot field. “Adam has been a great supporter of the Open and he is always thereabouts at the finish,’’ said Pitt. “We look forward to seeing him play again and we know that the crowds appreciate not only his golf, but the way he carries himself. He’s an immensely popular figure and a great ambassador for the sport in this country.’’

    NSW Minister for Trade, Tourism and Major Events and Minister for Sport, Stuart Ayres, said it will be great to see Adam Scott coming back to Sydney in 2015.

    "Adam is a local favourite and will be leading a world class field of golfers at this year's Australian Open. The NSW Government is proud to have secured this event for Sydney through Destination NSW, and with players like Adam Scott and Jordan Spieth it promises to attract visitors from all over the region to our State," he said.

    The Emirates Australian Open will be broadcast live on the Seven Network across all four days.

    The Championship is owned by Golf Australia and is managed by World Sport Group with the assistance of TRP Sport.

    Tickets are available through Ticketek at or by calling 132 849.

    The Emirates Australian Open will be played at The Australian Golf Club from 26-29 November. 


    Twitter: and #AusOpenGolf


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    Spieth to defend Emirates Australian Open title

    World golf’s new sensation and aspiring Grand Slam winner Jordan Spieth will defend his Emirates Australia Open title.

    As tickets go on sale around the country today for the November event in Sydney, 21-year-old Spieth, winner of both the Masters tournament and the United States Open in 2015, has committed to the Open at The Australian from 26-29 November.

    The Texan superstar fell just short of winning a third consecutive major in the Open Championship at St Andrews overnight, finishing just one shot out of a playoff. Had he managed a third major in a row, he would have joined the late, great Ben Hogan and set off for an unprecedented Grand Slam of professional majors.

    But now, he will focus on the remainder of the season and the Emirates Australian Open.

    Spieth, 21, played arguably the greatest round in the Australian Open’s storied history last November to win the Stonehaven Cup by six shots.

    And with the Open returning to The Australian Golf Club in Sydney for a record 19th time from November 26-29, the American is hoping he can emulate his eight-under-par round of 63 that sent the golfing world into a frenzy.

    “I’m absolutely thrilled to return to Sydney,” said Spieth, who parlayed his Australian success into a string of great results, including his record-breaking run to win the green jacket at The Masters in April.

    “I had a fantastic time in Australia. I can’t wait to come back and hopefully defend the Stonehaven Cup.”

    Spieth was ranked 11th in the world when he hoisted the Stonehaven Cup, but after winning the Emirates Australian Open, The Hero World Challenge, The Valspar Championship and The Masters, he reached No.2. His victory in the US Open at Chambers Bay in Washington recently has him within touching distance of the world No. 1, Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland.

    He is just the sixth player in history to hold both the Masters and US Open titles at one time, and just the second – behind the immortal Jack Nicklaus – to hold the Masters, US Open and Australian Open titles at one point. Nicklaus achieved this in 1972 after he won the Australian Open at Royal Hobart in 1971.

    Spieth is in remarkable company. “It has been an amazing six months since I left Australia,” he said. “Shooting 63 in the final round and winning at The Australian Golf Club was one of the proudest moments of my career. To see my name on the Stonehaven Cup alongside all the champions of the game gave me great confidence.”

    Spieth also was runner-up at both the Valero Texas Open and Shell Houston Open and fourth at the Northern Trust Open in Los Angeles.

    Emirates Australian Open tournament director Trevor Herden was delighted with Spieth’s signature.

    “Jordan was a massive hit at The Australian last year – nobody who saw him play will forget his final round, in particular,” Herden said.

    “But more than just play good golf, Jordan has been a tremendous ambassador for the tournament and has sung its praises in some pretty lofty places since he left, including at Augusta after he won The Masters.

    “It’s a great honour to have another major champion in our field – we can’t wait to see Jordan again.”

    New South Wales Premier Mike Baird said the global attention Spieth would bring was a boon for Sydney and New South Wales.

    “We saw how much people gravitated towards Jordan last year and that he spoke so glowingly of his time in our state was a ringing endorsement of all we have to offer,” Mr Baird said.

    “We are very keen to welcome Jordan back again in November and hope we can show him another few dazzling jewels of Sydney so he continues to spread the word on our behalf.”

    The Emirates Australian Open is a flagship tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia. The winner will receive a minimum of 32 Official World Golf Ranking points.

    The event will be telecast for all four days on Channel 7. 

    Tickets are on sale now from Ticketek at or by calling 132 849.

    The 2015 Emirates Australian Open will be played at The Australian Golf Club from November 26-29.


    Twitter: and #AusOpenGolf


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    Day, Scott finish close but not close enough at The Open

    Jason Day and Adam Scott have been here before; they know the associated pain all too well.

    The Queenslanders were neck deep in an enthralling final round of a major championship, but again fell agonisingly short. 

    Their own final assessments of their T4 and T10 finishes in weeks to come will be more complex.

    But in the brutal world of media and armchair analysis, the public will today address a couple of critical moments of the Open Championship that neither will recall fondly.

    Day, although never having held a share of the lead, was always within touching distance and had a chance to join the playoff with a birdie try on the 72nd hole.

    Almost unbelievably to his legion of fans, he left it short, just inches from his much-sought shot at “immortality”.

    “I hit a good putt. All I wanted to do was put a good stroke on it. I didn't want to blast it way past the hole and hit it through the break, so I just wanted to hit my normal putt and try to hole it,” Day explained after finishing at 14 under with a closing 70.

    “Unfortunately I thought it was a little bit faster, and it just pulled up short.”

    Scott, conversely, held a share of the lead for several holes after a blistering six-hole stretch from the fifth hole yielded five birdies.

    His critics will say that a missed par putt on the 15th from inside 30cm was his breaking point.

    The man himself pointed to an errant approach to the par-five 14th that finished in a back trap and in a position from which par was extremely unlikely, despite his best effort.

    Either way, both holes ended in bogeys that abruptly ended a round that had promised so much.

    Scott unravelled with a bogey on the 17th hole, then a double on the last after carving his drive out of bounds right – his five-over stretch in the closing five holes dropping him to a 10-under-par finish.

    “That (bogey on the 14th) wasn't the end of the world. But to miss a really short putt on the next, I don't really have an explanation for that,” Scott said.

    “I just went up to tap it in from a foot and it lipped out. Just one of those stupid things that happens – and that really put me in a tough position to where finishing with a handful of threes was unlikely on a day like today.

    “It's a tough finish, and I just didn't execute the last five holes.”

    Scott, who memorably won the 2013 Masters as much by masterfully keeping his nerve as his sublime golf, now has six top-10 finishes in the subsequent 10 majors.

    Day also has six in that time, including the third behind his mate at Augusta National.

    Both rightly claim that being in contention is the only thing they ask of themselves.

    Both insist their time in the major spotlight will come (again in Scott’s case).

    And both gave remarkably composed press conferences that reflect their intellect and professionalism.

    But behind all the polite answers, they were both bleeding.

    The cameras trained on Scott’s eyes and typically dazzling smile.

    All the while his hands were trembling.

    Day, similarly, was hurt badly by another chance that slipped away, the rueful shaking of a slumped head away a clear indicator as he walked away.

    Don’t let the slick answers fool you – these guys, our top-ranked players, were completely gutted.

    Even Day, a relative pup at age 27, knows there are finite chances to win these titles that define careers – his mate Tiger Woods the prime example. 

    Still, the answers to the immediate questions remained polished, at least publicly.

    Day refused to blame a shot the high winds cost him on the 13th green moments before the 10-hour delay was called on Saturday.

    Remarkably, that was the third and final bogey of a week dominated by shoddy weather.

    He closed without dropping a shot in 41 quality holes of golf – yet still bafflingly to him, he came up short.

    “I've been working very hard to try and accomplish my first major and it's a little frustrating with how it finished.

    “But I've been in contention at major championships a lot now, and it just shows I'm doing the right things, and I can't look at it as a negative.

    “I'm just a little frustrated because I just walked off the course. Give it time so I can just sit down and look at what the positives were and move on from there and just try and get better.

    “It's just something that I really want to do is I really want to have that shot at immortality. It'll soon come my way. I've just got to be patient with it.”

    Scott, even before regulation play finished, predicted that 15 under would have worked for him – indeed that was the playoff requirement.

    Having reached that figure in the lead on the 10th hole only added to his anguish.

    “I was six under (for the round) and I tied for the lead. I kind of levelled myself with where everyone was and that's exactly what I had to do,” Scott said.

    “I knew from that point on, I was just going to have to play a great nine holes to have a shot at it. I felt that was even to two under from that point.

    “It was playing really tough at times, straight into the wind, playing long, and I made my mistake on 14 with a poor shot in there and compounded that continuously coming in.

    “(I’m) disappointed the way I played the last five holes for sure. I could have done a lot better than that.

    “It's a shame not to get in there and finish with a shot, that's for sure, but maybe it was too much to ask today.”

    Sadly, that proved correct.

    Story: Golf Australia

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    Day leads the Aussies at The Open

    Queensland's Jason Day has charged into a share of the lead at The Open with Marc Leishman, Adam Scott and Steven Bowditch all within contention heading into the final round.

    The third round of The Open called for low numbers at St Andrews and the Aussies answered.

    Playing early in the morning, Marc Leishman got the ball rolling firing a bogey free 8-under 64, the lowest round of the tournament launching him into the clubhouse lead on 9-under the card.

    "Today the goal was to shoot a good round so I had a chance tomorrow. I probably wasn't quite expecting to do what I did, but I really put myself in it," said Leishman who by the 16th hole had an opportunity to record the lowest ever round in a Major.

    "I gave myself some really good chances on the last three holes, it was disappointing not to go a couple better."

    "15, 16, 17, they're not easy holes, especially where the pin is on 16 and 17 today. Thinking about making birdies instead of thinking about trying to hold on and make pars like you normally do on those holes was a pretty good mindset."

    Playing with Leishman, Marcus Fraser also put in an impressive showing, his 4-under 68 seeing him in a share of 33rd heading into tonight's final round.

    Teeing off in the fourth last group of the day, Jason Day played a perfect round reeling off five birdies for a 5-under 67.

    Day is well poised to claim the Major victory he so desperately wants; he starts the final round tied for the lead on 12-under the card with amateur Paul Dunne and Louis Oosthuizen.

    "We haven't had an Aussie win the Claret Jug since Mr Norman; it would be nice to put my name on the Jug. We're just trying to chase that bit of immortality," said Day.

    That's probably the best way to put it is just that you're stuck in history at that moment, and you know that year, that person's name on that jug is immortal in some way. It's just great to be able to have that piece of history and that glory that goes along with it."

    However lurking dangerously on the leaderboard is Jordan Spieth, he is just one shot off the lead and aiming to collect his third leg of the Major grand slam.

    "I'd be very shocked if he's not in contention going up the last few holes," added Day of his final round playing partner, Spieth.

    "He's definitely going to be the favourite, but I still have a lot of fans out there that are supporting me along the way."

    "I hear the Aussies in the crowds and I even hear the locals here, even people that aren't from the UK are supporting me."

    Also nicely poised to take a run at the Claret Jug is Adam Scott. His 2-under 70 in the third round has him tied 6th on 9-under the card, just three shots behind Day and the leading trio.

    Over the past three years Scott has been Australia's brightest hope of winning The Open with a memorable runner-up finish in 2012 and a further two top-5 finishes.

    Steven Bowditch is putting in his best performance at a Major and is tied 15th on 8-under the card, which could have been two shots better if not for a late stumble in the third round.

    A further two shots back on 6-under the card are Greg Chalmers and Matt Jones, while Geoff Ogilvy joins Marcus Fraser on 5-under.

    John Senden recorded his first under-par round of The Open and is now 4-under the card courtesy of his third round performance.     

    Playing his first tournament since April, Brett Rumford has been a model of consistency firing his third 1-under the card round of the tournament.

    Scott Arnold rounds out the Aussie contingent and is 1-over the card after three rounds of his Major debut.

    Story: PGA of Australia

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    Baker-Finch: Scotty deserves this

    Adam Scott deserves to stroll the Open fairways as a past champion, just like the 28 past winners who honoured Peter Thomson and the late Kel Nagle today.

    That emphatic declaration came from one of those feted few, Ian Baker-Finch after the 1991 titleholder completed a unique four-holes challenge.

    "No-one is ever owed anything in this game, but I think he's as close to being owed an Open as anyone,'' Baker-Finch said.

    "I think this might be it because he deserves those special occasions and he's up for it.

    "Like winning the first green jacket for Australia and winning an Open at St Andrews is something really special.''

    Even the great man himself, Thomson will be a silent and dignified supporter of the Queenslander who has finished second, tied third and tied fifth at the past three Open championships.

    "I've been wanting Adam Scott to win for several years now and he hasn't pulled it off yet, but I think he's the strongest player we've got. And it might be this year,'' Thomson said.

    "He knows what to do. I wish he would settle on a putter and stick to it, he's experimenting now.

    "There's no obstacle for him. He can win, really. He hits it as far as any of them and as accurately too.

    "Australian golf is going well with or without Open champions, but it would help young people, I guess, to be more impressed.''

    Thomson and Baker-Finch joined past champions that included Tom Watson, Gary Player, Arnold Palmer and Tiger Woods in the Champion Golfers' Challenge over four holes on the eve of the 144th Open championship first round.

    Eight groups of four played St Andrews' first, second, 17th and 18 holes in which the best individual score on each hole hole counted for the team.

    Thomson's team of Phil Mickelson, Ernie Els and Ben Curtis finished in a four-way tie with teams captained by Tony Jacklin, Tom Weiskopf and Palmer at three-under.

    And so the focus shifts to the battle to be crowned a major winner.

    "I think it's the major of all majors, the Open at St Andrews, and it would be great to see an Aussie win it, whether it be (Marc) Leishman or Jason (Day) or Adam,'' Baker-Finch said.

    "Any of the guys could do it, but it would be good to see one again. I think that they're all prepared. There's 15 Aussies, any one of them could do well. I won one. Any one of those could win one, too.

    "You always look at the highest-ranked, Adam Scott, Jason Day, but Marc Leishman, John Senden, Rod Pampling, they've all got the ability to do it.

    "Matty Jones, nobody strikes it better than him, so I think it's patience, getting the right side of the draw. I think that's going to be a big part of this Open, Thursday, Friday weather.''

    Bruce Matthews is a Herald Sun sports writer
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    Bowdo living the dream
    Bar an “ankle tapping”, Steve Bowditch is on the verge of fulfilling his lifelong ambition.

    Bowditch, 32, dreamt of being a PGA Tour player by age 30 – he did so the first time at age 22 – and play The Open Championship at St Andrews.

    He confessed today, just two days before his ambition is reached, that he doesn’t think about hoisting the Claret Jug.

    But in the next breath, the Queenslander said he didn’t think about winning on the PGA Tour, but now has two titles to his credit following his Texas Open win in March.

    “(Those visualisations are) not something I’ve ever done. This week, bar an ankle tapping, so I don’t get to peg it up on Thursday, my two biggest dreams will be made real. Which is pretty neat,” he said with his unique mix of raw comedy and reflection.

    Bowditch first played a major at the 2003 Open Championship when he missed the cut at Royal St George’s by three shots. His only other majors were both last year – a sure sign of his sustained improvement, even if he still admits there’s much work to do.

    “I always wanted to be out here and compete at the highest level all the time. I’m still not there.

    “This is my fourth major now, so I’m not even close to the top level. Hopefully I can keep gaining experience and maybe I can keep sliding up those world rankings and compete with the big boys all the time.”

    Bowditch has struck the ball well in practice, but has a wish that might sound odd to fair-weather golfers.

    “The game’s in pretty good shape. And I enjoy this style of course, even though I don’t get to play it much,” he said.

    “You’ve got to be able to think out there and unfortunately the last couple of days we’ve played it the weather conditions have been perfect.

    “So hopefully tomorrow we might get some wind and rain to mix it up a little bit, because I dare say by the weekend it’ll kick on.”

    The weather forecast in eastern Scotland is bleak, particularly for Friday’s second round with winds expected to top 60km/h late in the afternoon.

    “It’s all part of the experience,” Bowditch said.

    “You play a benign practice round and do all the prep work, but if you’re not out there when it’s trying conditions, you’re basically starting again on Thursday.”

    But, as his qualification through FedEx Cup points rankings suggests, it’s the consistent side of the once mercurial Bowditch that has made his progress continual.

    “It’s pleasing. It’s stuff we’ve been working on, just tightening up a few shots and take some big numbers out of my game,” he said.

    “I (can now) play a little conservative … but also a little aggressively too, when it’s needed.

    “I’ve been able to make a few more birdies from aggressive play with different shots, not just off the tee.

    “Getting aggressive when we’ve got right numbers (yardages) and trusting my short game and, when we don’t, we’re playing away from it (the pin) a little more.

    “It’s hard to explain, but we’re being more aggressive and passive at the same time.

    “Back (in 2003) I thought my game was better, but I didn’t have the mental approach you need to play golf at the highest level. I don’t think I’m there yet.

    “My game through (those middle years) deteriorated until I found a coach in Scott Hamilton who I trusted and believed what we’re doing.

    “Then from 2009 through to now it’s gradually getting better.

    “Once your game gets to a certain level, then you can really concentrate on the mental side of things and your preparation and you’re not sitting on the range all day beating balls and trying to find a golf swing.

    “It’s not there every week, but it’s minor tweaks that will get you out there to compete every week (now).”

    Bowditch said discipline would determine his finish this week, saying one hot stretch could be enough.

    “Neil (Wallace), my caddie, and I, if we can attack when we need to attack but really just be patient. It really is a patience game out here and like most majors, if you can have a 6-9 hole stretch … when you can make five or six birdies, then the rest you just tack along and minimise mistakes, by the end of Sunday you’re going to be around the (mark).”

    And that really would be a dream come true. Even for mild mannered Bowditch.

    Story: Mark Hayes, St Andrews

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    Quayle wins Pacific Northwest Men's Amateur
    Anthony Quayle of Queensland, Australia sank a 20-foot birdie putt on the 36th hole of the final match to defeat Shintaro Ban of San Jose, Calif. and win the 114th Pacific Northwest Men’s Amateur Championship.

    Ban had squared the match on the par-3 35th hole when Quayle 3-putted. 

    After Quayle sank the birdie putt on the final hole, Ban saw his own birdie attempt, which would have extended the match, slide by the hole, giving Quayle the title.

    In the morning round of the match, played on the resort’s Woodlands course, Quayle built an early lead as he played the round in 7-under par, and was 3-up at the lunch break as the two prepared to play the resort’s Meadows course in the afternoon round of the match.

    Ban quickly got back into the match, squaring it up with a birdie on the par-5 19th hole and two eagles, which included a hole-out from the fairway on the 419-yard par-4 22nd hole and a 3 on the par-5 24th hole when he reached the green in two.

    On the last nine holes, Quayle birdied the 28th and 29th holes, both par-4s, then Ban won the 30th hole.

    Then, in gunslinger style, the two players matched birdies on the 31st, 33rd and 34th holes, Quayle clinging to a 1-up lead.

    Ban squared the match on the 205-yard par-3 35th hole, as Quayle double-bogeyed the hole (he would double-bogey both par-3s on this final nine), which set up the final hole dramatics.

    The championship was held at Sunriver (Ore.) Resort, and was conducted by the Pacific Northwest Golf Association (PNGA).

    Anthony Quayle, winner of the 114th Pacific Northwest Men’s Amateur Championship, poses with the Macan Cup in front of the final scoreboard.

    Of the putt on the final hole, Quayle said, “I just told myself I could make it, trying to keep positive thoughts in my mind. I was a little bit nervous and just wanted to put a good stroke on it. It was straight uphill.”

    After making birdie, Quayle had to stand by and watch as Ban attempted to tie the hole with his own birdie. “In match play you always have to believe the other guy is going to make it,” Quayle said. “Otherwise it’s too much of an emotional rollercoaster.”

    Of his win, Quayle said, “It’s such a massive relief. There’s so much stress all week, so much golf and so many matches. It’s very taxing taxing mentally. This win helps the confidence in my game, and I’ll always be able to say I have it on my resume that I won the Pacific Northwest Amateur.”

    Quayle, the No. 5 seed, had defeated No. 1 seed Charlie Kern of Mercer Island, Wash., 1-up, in yesterday’s semifinal match, a contest that had also gone down to the final hole of the match.

    Quayle, 20, recently won the Tasmanian Amateur Open Championship, is a member of the Queensland Men’s State Team and is ranked in the top 15 in the Australian Amateur Rankings.

    Ban was attempting to follow in the footsteps of his older brother, Shotaro, who had won this championship in 2012. Ban just finished his freshman year playing on the men’s golf team at UNLV. He was a co-medalist at the 2012 U.S. Junior Amateur, and qualified for the 2013 U.S. Amateur. He won the 2014 San Francisco City Men’s Amateur, and last week tied for seventh at the Sahalee Players Championship.

    The Pacific Northwest Men’s Amateur is one of the oldest amateur golf championships in the world. Past champions include names such as Tiger Woods, Jeff Quinney, Ben Crane, Jeff Coston, Nick Flanagan, Jim McLean and Pacific Northwest Golf Hall of Famers Chandler Egan, Harry Givan, Jack Westland, Bud Ward and George Holland, among many others.

    Players competed for the Macan Cup, which is named after legendary golf course designer A.V. Macan, a member of the Pacific Northwest Golf Hall of Fame and winner of this championship in 1913.

    Story / Video:
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    Success at the 2015 Bargara Junior Classic
    The Bargara Junior Open Classic was held from Tuesday 7 July to Thursday 9 July over 54 holes of stroke play at Bargara Golf Club.

    The tournament saw junior golfers from across the region battle it out for the title which has been in contest for 27 years.

    Douglas Klein, 2014 Junior Male Amateur Golfer of the Year, took out the Boy’s title with a final score of 65, 72, 70 (207).

    Kate Law, of Maryborough, won the Girl’s event finishing with 75, 74, 76 (225).

    Next year, the event will no longer run in its current format with the Queensland Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur Championship set to move to the Bargara Golf Club.

    The Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur will run from Tuesday 28th June until Friday 1st July 2016, providing a great opportunity for the junior golfers to participate in a junior state championship.

    Entries for the 2015 Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur Championship held at Indooroopilly Golf Club from 7 to 9 December are opening soon.

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    2016 Isuzu Queensland Open moves to Brisbane
    Golf Queensland today announced the 2016 Isuzu Queensland Open will be hosted by The Brisbane Golf Club.

    The three-year agreement will see the Queensland Open return to the course that has hosted the Championship 18 times over its 90 year history.

    Golf Queensland chairman Peter Castrisos said it was pleasing to have the backing of Queensland golf clubs, like The Brisbane Golf Club and their members, to ensure this great Championship remains successful.

    "There has been tremendous support for the Queensland Open since its return to the PGA Tour of Australasia calendar three years ago," Mr Castrisos said. 

    "Golf Queensland, along with a number of stakeholders, banded together to get this historical championship back up and running.

    "Brookwater Golf and Country Club was one of those behind the return and we thank them immensely for hosting the tournament over the past three years and look forward to another successful event this August."

    "The next phase will see the championship back at The Brisbane Golf Club, 25 years since they hosted the event which saw the then amateur, Stuart Appleby, claim the title."

    The Brisbane Golf Club President, John Kelly, said that The Brisbane Golf Club is delighted to support Golf Queensland in hosting the Queensland Open and contributing to the development of golf in Queensland.

    "We are also tremendously excited about this great opportunity to showcase our fantastic course to the golfing world," said Kelly.

    Tournament Operations Manager for the PGA of Australia, Graeme Scott, is pleased with the venue selected for the 2016 Queensland Open.

    "Brisbane Golf Club will be a great venue for this tournament," said Scott.

    "The course is already in great condition and I'm sure it will be presented extremely well for next year's Championship."

    The 2015 Isuzu Queensland Open will be played at the Brookwater Golf and Country Club from 20 to 23 August. Entry is free for spectators who are also welcome to walk the course with the Professionals.  

    To find out more about the upcoming 2015 event, click here.

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    2016 Queensland Boy's and Girl's Amateur relocates

    The Queensland Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur Championship is set to move to Bargara Golf Club and will be held from Tuesday 28th June until Friday 1st July 2016. 

    Following consultation between Golf Queensland and Bargara Golf Club it was agreed that the Queensland Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur will replace the Bargara Junior Open Classic from next year.

    With this change, the Bargara Junior Open Classic will no longer run in its current format from 2016.

    Luke Bates, Golf Queensland’s Manager of Golf Operations, said, “Golf Queensland and Bargara Golf Club see this as positive step to growing junior golf in the State.”

    “The Junior Open Classic has been a prominent event over the past 27 years for junior golfers and Golf Queensland looks forward to continuing this legacy with Bargara Golf Club.”

    Don McKewen, President of Bargara Golf Club said, “The Board welcomes this change and the benefits that a junior state championship will bring to the region. 

    “This is a great achievement for our club and recognises the hard work of a dedicated team which has successfully run the three-day Bargara Junior Open Classic for 27 years.”

    In 2011, the Bargara Golf Club hosted the Queensland Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur and it was well received by both players and parents.

    The 2015 Queensland Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur Championship was held at Indooroopilly Golf Club from 7 to 9 December.

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    Newcomers win Mt Coolum Cup

    New members Gary Rehbein and Colin Eames have won the prestigious Mount Coolum Cup at their first attempt.

    The pair, who joined the club in January, combined superbly for 50 points in the 4BBB stableford competition to win the 2015 annual honour board event.

    Originally presented to the then Suncoast Beach Golf Club in 1984, the name became the Mount Coolum Cup the following year when the club name change occurred.

    Club Patron Ken Chadwick has assisted to restore the prestige of the Mount Coolum Cup in recent years by sponsoring the event and bolstering the prizemoney on offer. 

    As 2015 winners Rehbein and Eames will have their names entered on the club’s honour board as well on the trophy. They will also be invited to the 2015 presentation night where they will be presented with a trophy and a $150 cash prize.

    Eighty teams contested the 2015 event. 

    Story: Tony Durkin

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    New sanctioning agreement for 2015 Australian PGA Championship
    The Australian PGA Championship will reach more than 500 million viewers globally and be the richest tournament in Australia in 2015 thanks to a new co-sanctioning agreement announced today with the European Tour.

    The Championship, the oldest and most prestigious professional tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia, will be played at the RACV Royal Pines Resort from the 3 – 6 December 2015 and is expected to attract a number of the world’s best players with the prize fund increasing to AU$1.75M.

    PGA of Australia Chief Executive Brian Thorburn said sanctioning with the European Tour would provide a greater reach with a new broadcast agreement through Europe, Asia and the US.

    “This will be the highest purse in Australian PGA Championship history and will position the tournament more strongly on the international stage with exposure to a greater broadcast platform than any of our previous tournaments.”

    “This is a huge step forward for the tournament to rank alongside many of the great tournaments in Europe and Asia. The partnership will also provide the opportunity to improve the strength of the field through the greater depth of international players currently playing on the European Tour,” he said.

    In addition to the 1st place cheque of A$315,000 from RACV Royal Pines, the winner of the 2015 Australian PGA Championship will be granted exemption into the 2016 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and the 2016 BMW PGA Championship at The Wentworth Club in the UK, and compete for the A$19.5M in prize money at those events.

    “As the last tournament of 2015 the Australian PGA Championship caps off what will again be another exciting year of Australian golf,” Thorburn said.

    Keith Waters, The European Tour’s Chief Operating Officer and Director of International Policy, said: “The relationship between The European Tour and the PGA Tour of Australasia continues to flourish and our partnership will continue to bear fruit over the coming years. We are delighted to assist in elevating this Championship and providing the opportunity for European Tour and Sunshine Tour members to play in this great event.”

    The Championship will also provide visitors the chance to view Graham Marsh’s $10million completed upgrade to the RACV Royal Pines Resort layout.

    “RACV has invested a significant amount of money to upgrade their championship course and it is looking exceptional. The newly designed 16th and 18th holes will provide fantastic viewing for fans attending the tournament while the 10th tee, which is now positioned near the tournament ‘village’, will enhance the fan engagement experience even further,” added Thorburn.

    Minister for Tourism and Major Events, Kate Jones, said she welcomed the new agreement that would provide a significant boost to the event’s international profile. 

    “The Australian PGA Championships is a highlight on Queensland’s events calendar, attracting a crowd of around 40,000 each year,” Ms Jones said.  

    “The Queensland Government is proud to support the event through Tourism and Events Queensland as part of our commitment to grow tourism and jobs for Queenslanders.”

    The European Tour will receive 60 positions into the tournament. In an arrangement with (South African) Sunshine Tour, 30 of those positions will be granted to their membership.  The PGA Tour of Australasia will receive a minimum of 71 direct positions into the tournament. In addition, there will be 8 tournament invitations, 6 qualifying positions and 3 positions for PGA Vocational Members.  PGA of Australia is working on broader and enhanced playing opportunities at a number of different tournaments for its entire Australian membership in the medium to short term. 

    The tournament is proudly supported by Tourism and Events Queensland, RACV, City of Gold Coast, Gold Coast Tourism, Emirates and Coca-Cola Amatil. 

    It will be broadcast live on Ch7 from 3 – 6 December, 2015.

    The official Australian PGA Championship event launch will be held on 12th August. 

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    Golf Queensland congratulates Cameron Smith

    On behalf of Golf Queensland Board, staff and Queensland golf clubs we would like to extend our congratulations to Queensland Professional Cameron Smith after his T4 finish in the 2015 US Open at Chambers Bay.

    In his first major, Smith sealed his position on the 18th hole when he played a spectacular three wood for a kick-in eagle. 

    As the only player at the event with four rounds at par or better this week, he tied with fellow Queenslander Adam Scott and earned himself $US407,037.

    It’s been a big 12 months for the 21-year-old who has come from strength to strength since his tied third finish at the 2014 Isuzu Queensland Open. 

    Smith accumulated seven top 10 finishes from nine starts on the Asian Tour, making him eligible to compete in the USPGA Tour event, the CIMB Classic where he finished tied fifth and earning more than $250,000.

    Following on from the CIMB Classic, Smith played four US Tour events including the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines and the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro Am at Pebble Beach, missing the cut on each.

    Smith then flew back to his hometown of Brisbane to play in the Coca-Cola Queensland PGA Championship at City Golf Club Toowoomba where he finished in 2nd place to Ryan Fox, a gesture which was recognised by many people in the Queensland golf industry.

    Since then, Smith competed in the New Zealand Open (T4) and played four events on the US Tour including the RBC Heritage (T15), the Zurich Classic of New Orleans (T43), AT&T Byron Nelson (T46) and the Memorial Tournament (MC), to qualify for the US Open.

    His top four finish at the US Open gives Smith a start at the 2016 Masters Tournament, 2016 US PGA Tour Card as well as earning enough points for US PGA Tour Special Temporary Membership Category for the remainder of the year and being ranked in the world’s top 100.

    Golf Queensland is very proud of Cameron’s achievements and look forward to watching him compete against the world’s best.

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    Doors fly open for heroic Smith

    It had already been a great week when Cameron Smith stood over a three-wood on the 18th fairway.

    But when the 21-year-old major championship debutant put the 265m shot to within 20cm for a kick-in eagle, it launched his career into a stratosphere he couldn’t quite grasp.

    The Golf Australia rookie pro laid the foundation for his next 18 months with his eagle the icing on a round of 68 that propelled him to three under overall and a tie for fourth alongside Adam Scott.

    Did we mention it was his first major?

    The result won him $US407,037 and effectively secured his US PGA Tour card for next season, along with a start at next week’s Travelers Championship.

    It gives him a return entry to next year’s US Open and the Masters and catapults him into the world’s top 100.

    And should he accept, which will be a matter of time, a special temporary membership that’s now on offer based on his FedEx Cup points total, he’ll be able to accept unlimited sponsor invites into the remaining events this American season.

    In short, he’s skipped about normal 1000 steps with four days of almighty heroics.

    And it was too much for the mild-mannered Brisbane lad to take in.

    “I'm speechless. I just want to sort of sit in the hotel room and let it all absorb,” he said with trademark cheeky grin.

    “That sounds pretty good, though, doesn’t it? I honestly haven’t thought about it. It’s pretty crazy actually.”

    What he could explain was the feeling after his withering finish with 6000 people in the 18th grandstand roaring in unison.

    “It was spine tingling, it was crazy,” he beamed.

    “Never, ever been -- nothing near that. It's awesome.

    “I said to my caddie, Dan, on the tee, `Do we have a shot at getting there (in two shots)?’.

    He said, `If you hit a good drive’, so I hit a really good drive, ended up just short of the bunker there on the uphill slope, which helped a lot (with my second shot).

    “It was just a perfect 3- wood. And I hit it … and it went a lot closer than I thought it was going to go.

    “I wasn't really expecting it (to go that close) to be honest. I just wanted to get it somewhere on the green and hopefully I would have putted it.

    “But to finish up and have a tap-in for eagle is a nice way to end,” he said in one of the year’s great understatements.

    “It still hasn't really sunk in, and I don't know what to say. Sorry.”

    Smith said his form hadn’t been great in his US starts, but that he’d had a good feeling before coming to Chambers Bay and in practice rounds.

    “I thought I could definitely compete and if I could get my way around the golf course pretty good, I'd sort of thought I had a shot.

    “But it wasn't to be, really. But I'm happy with where I finished, for sure.”

    And as it slowly began to sink in, Smith began to reflect on what might have been had his normally laser accurate putting been on song during the final round.

    “I probably hit it the best today of the whole week.

    “I gave myself plenty of opportunities, but my distance control with the flat stick today was definitely not as good as it has been.

    “I had three three-putts today, so it might have cost me a `W’. But what can you do? It’s golf.

    Smith said his win gave his confidence an extreme boost.

    “To be up there in a major means that you can play with the big guys,” he said.

    “So I just (need to) keep doing what I'm doing and hopefully it all works out.

    “I have had plenty of opportunities this year on the PGA Tour and didn’t really do too much and I really thought I wasn’t playing my best.

    “But to come out here and show everyone what I’ve got is a very cool thing.”

    Very cool indeed. And in his first major!

    Story: Mark Hayes / Golf Australia

    Click here for a statement from Golf Queensland.

    Queenslanders in US Open news:

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    Champions make a habit of winning

    When it is time for the honour boards at The Brisbane Golf Club to be updated, the sign writer will not need to check the spelling of the 2015 Men’s and Ladies’ champions.

    Champions Cameron Powell and Lynne Conroy have won their divisions nine and five times respectively, and their names adorn the honour board for a number of other championship victories.

    Twenty-eight-year-old Powell, who concedes he did not become serious about his golf until he was 19, scored a 4&2 win over three-time champion Don Nicol in the recent 36-hole match play final.

    He had previously scored qualifying rounds of 74-75 before winning 8&7 and 3&1 in the match play quarter and semi-finals.

    The ladies play a different championship format to the men.

    Every even year they contest the same format as the men (top eight play match play after two qualifying stroke rounds), and every other year they play four stroke rounds.

    Lynne Conroy’s winning score this year was 339, and she beat Angela Fong by one stroke.

    Mrs Conroy, who joined The Brisbane Golf Club in 1996, has now won 48 honour board events including the Brisbane Shield twice, both times partnering her husband John.

    She has now won the ladies' championship nine times, her recent victory giving her the title for a record six years back-to-back.

    After winning successive titles in 2010, 2011 and 2012, Cameron Powell turned professional and had brief stint playing the China Tour in 2013.

    However he decided the life of a touring professional was not for him and was re-admitted to the amateur ranks in October last year.

    Powell conceded that playing Don Nicol in the match play final had been a little surreal.

    “Don is nine years older than me and when I was starting to get serious about my golf about a decade ago, I would watch him play and be in awe of his ability,” he said.

    “To play him in the final, and beat him, was a major achievement for me and also a huge thrill.”

    Mrs Conroy described her win as unexpected, claiming she had not been playing well prior to the championships.

    “I actually had only one good round during the championships, and eventually snuck home by a single shot. I was nine shots behind after two rounds but my 78 in round three put me back in the running,” she said.

    Her goal now is to win three more times to eclipse the current ladies’ record of 11 championship victories. – TONY DURKIN
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    O'Keeffe victorious at Queensland Women's Sand Greens Championship
    Brooke O'Keeffe (Springsure) has won the 2015 Queensland Women's Sand Green Championship at Alpha Golf Club this weekend.

    O'Keeffe shot a final round score of 66 (-4) to join her first round score of even par-70 to take out the Silver Division by six shots. 


    The overnight leader, O'Keeffe managed just a single shot start over Emerald member Sonia Bray who returned a 71 (+1) for her Saturday round. 

    Bray returned another consistent round of 71 to finish on 142 (+2) for the championship, enough to secure second place.   

    In the Bronze 1 division Lola Cuffe (St George) and Loretta Lockie (Taroom) fired first round scores of 87 to lead the division by a single stroke. 
    Cuffe returned a second round score of 86 to finish on 173. 
    Katherine West (Borneo Barracks) returned a second round 85 to join her first round score of 88 to also finish on 173. 
    Loretta Lockie's second round wasn't good enough to join the pair and a sudden death play-off was required to separate the players. 
    Both ladies couldn't be separated on the first play-off hole with each returning par. 
    Cuffe was the eventual winner on the second play-off after returning a second par, enough to win the Bronze 1 division.  

    The Bronze 2 division was also decided by a sudden death play-off with Rochelle Robinson (Blackall) the eventual winner on the first play-off hole against local member Eunice Frazer (Alpha). 
    Frazer finished with 101,92-193 and Robinson retuned rounds of 98,95-193,

    All players were greeted with superb conditions on both days of the championship.

    The Alpha Golf Club received extremely positive comments from all involved due to the great preparation of their course and kind country hospitality.

    For all championships results and information, please click here.

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    Smith's poise defies his years
    There was a split second when Cam Smith looked vulnerable in his major championship debut today.

    It didn’t last long.

    The Queenslander’s entourage said he’d woken up before his debut US Open round as calm if it was a Wednesday chook run at his home Wantima Country Club.

    And barring a quick slap of his putter after an uncharacteristic double-bogey on the 13th – his fourth of the day – Smith played true to script for an even-par 70 built on patience beyond his 21 years.

    Smith, without any status in the United States but rapidly building a resume of impressive invitational starts, only qualified in Ohio last week.

    But a great sign of his ability to keep his head in a crisis came with a 40-foot bomb for par on the 11th hole, his second, after a drive into deep rough in a mid-fairway mound.

    A missed birdie chance on 12 was followed by that double-bogey on 13, but the Golf Australia rookie squad member calmly jammed in great approaches inside 1m on both 14 and 15 to right the ship.

    “Yeah, I’m pumped. I started off a bit shaky … but a couple of birdies in a row that got the momentum going and held on to it pretty good for the rest of the day,” Smith said.

    “I could have let that get to me, but my caddie Dan said, `Just keep at it, it’s a US Open, it happens’.

    “Really, you’ve just gotta take it on the chin and keep moving forward (and) I just got on with it and did my stuff the rest of the day.”

    And that’s nearly a perfect description.

    He birdied the 18th, bogeyed the 2nd and otherwise parred out – a steadiness reflected in his calm post-round assessments.

    “It was tough, but fair. The game plan was to make 18 pars and that was sort of how it ended up,” he said.

    “I’ll keep the game plan exactly the same tomorrow and hopefully a few more putts can go in.

    “But I think I’m in a pretty good spot.”

    Smith said his first major championship tee shot had been nervy, but far from overwhelming.

    “There weren’t too many around when we teed off (at 7am), (but) the crowds got bigger as the day went on and there were a couple of big roars and it was a pretty cool experience.”

    And very cool to see the first edition of something Australian golf can get used to for many years ahead.

    Story: Mark Hayes

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    Smith has plenty to play for at Chambers Bay
    WHILE his namesake couldn't lead Queensland to a series-clinching win on Wednesday night, young Queensland golfer Cameron Smith is hoping the state, and the country, is cheering his name come Sunday.

    The 21-year-old is more than happy for his name to be associated with the Queensland and Australian rugby league skipper but as he lines up for his maiden major championship at the US Open he is ready to forge his own identity.

    As a former Australian amateur champion Smith has been plying his trade on the US PGA tour this season on limited sponsor invites, riding a T5 finish on debut in Malaysia last year to $US407,530 and 207 FedEx Cup points in nine starts.

    While he has used up his allotted sponsor invites for the year Smith could become a special temporary member should he earn 116 or more points at Chambers Bay, the equivalent of somewhere around a top-five finish.

    It would enable the young star to accept further sponsor invites and put him in prime position to collect a full playing card for 2015-16.

    To get those privileges he need only match the 125th ranked player on tour this year in points or money, which would be all but a lock given he would already have more money than last years cut off.

    "This is a good week to do something for sure," said Smith, who birdied four of his last six holes in sectional qualifying to earn his place.

    "I am playing good. I am hitting the ball solid.

    "I think the key this week is just keeping out of the cabbage and just doing your work around the greens.

    "I'll try to shoot somewhere around even because that should be up there at the end of the week."

    Read more on the Golf Link website here.

    Smith joins eight Australians at the US Open, including fellow Queenslanders Adam Scott, Jason Day and John Senden as well as Australian's Marc Leishman, Geoff Ogilvy, Kurt Barnes and Marcus Fraser.

    Watch the US Open LIVE on Fox Sports - dates and times below in AEST:

    • Round 1 | Fri 19 June | 0200 - 1300 | Fox Sports 3
    • Round 2 | Sat 20 June | 0300 - 1300 | Fox Sports 3
    • Round 3 | Sun 21 June | 0500 - 1200 | Fox Sports 3
    • Round 4 | Mon 22 June | 0500 - 1230 | Fox Sports 3

    Queenslanders in the news:

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    Taylor Macdonald does Queensland proud in Scotland

    The British Amateur Championships held at Panmure and Carnoustie golf clubs in Scotland this week has provided invaluable learning opportunities for one of Queensland’s top amateurs.

    Taylor Macdonald, 2014 Male Queensland Amateur of the Year, travelled to Scotland this week with Golf Queensland Head Coach Tony Meyer and the Golf Australia team to compete in one of the oldest and most prestigious amateur events in the world.

    This year, the Amateur comprised almost two-thirds foreign players including five of the world’s top 20 all of which compete for a start in the Open Championships of the same year, as well as the following year’s Masters Tournament and the US Open.

    After competing over 36 holes of strokeplay, one round at each of the two courses, the top 64 players then progress to the match play section.

    Day one saw Taylor shoot an opening round 72 (E) at Carnoustie placing him in good position heading into the final qualifying round scheduled for Tuesday.

    Taylor went on to finish T32 in the qualifying round after he shot a second round even par 70 in tough conditions at the Panmure course.

    Day three saw him up against world number 10 and two-time European Amateur champion Ashley Chesters of England for the first round of match play at Carnoustie.

    Unfortunately, Taylor fell behind early and the Englishman played a solid game, leaving no opportunities for Taylor to come back and took the win over Taylor 3-2.

    Despite the loss, the tournament has provided new opportunities for the Queenslander who impressed his coach Tony Meyer, “Taylor played extremely well in very tough conditions and should be proud of how he played all week.

    “These couple of weeks in Scotland have been a great learning curve for Taylor and will no doubt help him continue to develop as player.

    “The conditions Taylor has played here in Scotland have been something he would not have faced before with strong winds, cold weather and thick rough” says Tony.

    Taylor will now return to Australia before heading to the United States in July to contest the Western Amateur and the US Amateur.

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    White and Proverbs win Mixed Foursomes Championship
    Stacey White (Pacific Golf Club) and Blake Proverbs (Pacific Golf Club) combined magnificently to win the 2015 Mixed Foursomes Championship at McLeod Country Golf Club on Sunday 14 June 2015.

    White and Proverbs led by two shots at conclusion of the morning round when they fired a commanding score of 70.

    Sarah Wilson (Half Moon Bay) and Shae Wools-Cobb (Maroochy) finished the first round a further two shots back on 72. 

    The pair was unable to capitalise on their morning form, carding a 76 in the afternoon round.

    White and Proverbs fired a consistent second round score of 74 giving them a thirty-six hole score 70,74-144 enough to win this year’s championship.

    It was champion Stacey’s sister, Nadine White (Pacific), and her partner Nick Barney (Windaroo) who fired the day’s best. 

    Their second round score of 68 along with their first round score of 77 elevated them into second place, finishing on 145.

    Golf Queensland wishes to thank the McLeod Country Golf Club for presenting the course in fantastic condition.

    For complete gross and nett scores please click here.

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    Dodt chases European honours
    Isuzu Queensland Open champion Andrew Dodt has no doubt his victory at Brookwater last August played a significant role in his on-going success during 2015. 
    Dodt is uncertain if he will defend his title later this year as he chases higher honours in Europe and the United States. This year’s Open will be contested at Brookwater from August 20-23, a fortnight after Dodt plays the World Golf Championship-Bridgestone Invitational at Akron, Ohio, and a week after the US PGA Championship for which he hopes to qualify. 

    Read more in the Winter 2015 edition of Q Golf Online magazine here.
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    O'Dell proves to be the local hero at Barcaldine
    Barcaldine member Jacob O’Dell has beaten one of the strongest fields in recent memory, to claim the 2015 Men’s Sand Greens. 

    Leading by 2 shots after Round 1 with a 6-under 67, the pressure was on O’Dell with 2012 Champion Anthony Timms (City Golf Club) primed for a final round charge.
    Coming through 9 holes in Round 2, O’Dell had extended his lead to 3 shots over Timms with fellow City member Nigel Weldon making a run. 

    Timms birdied the 10th and 11th holes to close the gap to only 1, but when O’Dell responded with birdies on 13, 15, 16 and 17, the title was staying in Barcaldine. 

    A final hole eagle secured a runner-up finish for Timms, but all the plaudits go to O’Dell who closed with a steady par, a final round 8-under 65 and a two shot victory.
    Edward Choyce (City Golf Club) overcame a 2 shot deficit to win the B Grade Championship from overnight leader Barry Littlewood (Isisford Golf Club).

    Birdies on the 17th and 18th holes proved to be difference after Littlewood surrendered his lead with a double bogey on the 10th.
    The C Grade Championship proved to be a popular victory with 23 year Sand Green veteran Jim Bourke (Baralaba Golf Club) receiving a rousing ovation after claiming his maiden title by 1 shot over Phil Kennedy (Mitchell Golf Club), with rounds of 83 and 86.
    The Fourball Championship was held on Friday with Wes Waugh and Cameron Tindall winning in a triple countback (52 points) from the teams of Jesse Noonan and Ted Choyce, and Glenn Forsyth and Bob O’Brien.
    Barcaldine Golf Club is to be applauded for the outstanding job in hosting the 2015 edition of Men's Sand Greens. 

    Thanks also to the local sponsors and the naming sponsor City Golf Club, for their generous continued support. 
    With the previous two editions of the Men’s Sand Greens reaching capacity field, players are already excited for Quilpie in 2016.

    For full results please click here.
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    Smith joins US Open field

    Queenslander Cameron Smith has joined the list of eight Australians who will tee it up in the United States Open at Chambers Bay later this month.

    Smith, the 21-year-old member of Golf Australia’s rookie squad, qualified today after he shot eight-under over 36 holes in sectional qualifying in Columbus, Ohio.

    It was enough to give the former Australian amateur champion the right to play his first US Open from June 18-21.

    Smith has made impressive strides since turning professional in 2013, finishing fifth on the Asian Tour order of merit last year.

    The eight Australians already qualified for the US Open are Smith, fellow Queenslanders Adam Scott, Jason Day, and John Senden as well as Marc Leishman, Geoff Ogilvy, Kurt Barnes and Marcus Fraser.

    There is a further cut-off point after the St Jude Classic this week on the US PGA Tour, where the top 60 on the world rankings who have not already qualified will earn a start.

    This is the opportunity for another Queenslander, Steven Bowditch, who is at No. 64 on the rankings this week.

    Story: Martin Blake / Golf Australia

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    Bowditch salutes in Texas

    Queensland's Steven Bowditch held firm on a dramatic final day to win the Byron Nelson tournament on the United States PGA Tour today, his second tour victory.

    Bowditch, 31, had recorded just one top-10 finish since his maiden triumph, the Valero Texas Open last year.

    But starting the day two shots clear, he carded a 64 to win by four shots at a venue where he and his wife Amanda Yarussi celebrated their wedding four years ago.

    The Queenslander, who lives in Dallas, Texas near the tournament venue of TPC Four Seasons, closed superbly.

    He nailed a long par-saving putt after finding the back bunker at the par-four 15th hole, then made a great birdie from beside the green at the par-five 16th after tugging his approach. That made the margin three shots, and then at the par-three 17th, he thought that he had flared his tee shot into the water that guards the right of the green.

    Destiny was with him. The shot cleared the water narrowly and stopped on the right fringe. Bowditch rolled in the birdie putt that sealed the deal, leaving him with a four-shot lead going up the 18th hole.

    At 18, he striped his drive over the water and into the fairway, almost made birdie from the fringe of the green, then tapped in from a few centimetres for the win.

    He pockets $US1.278 million, and gets a further two-year exemption to play on the US Tour.

    Bowditch, a brilliant rather than steady player, is unpredictable. After his win in the Texas Open last year and his first appearance at the Masters, where he was tied-26th, his world ranking slid to 127th.

    But his best is quite something. "When it's good, it's good,'' he said. "When it's not, I'm just trying to hang on.''

    Bowditch played alongside Dustin Johnson, one of the world's best players, and outplayed him, rarely looking flustered. At one point during the back nine, he signed an autograph for a fan; at one green, he yawned. But it was a mirage. "Moving a mile a minute,'' was his own description of his mindset. "I wasn't really at ease.''

    His American wife was waiting behind the 18th green, where their wedding photographs were taken just a few years ago.

    “This is a pretty special place for myself and my wife,’’ he said. “We took some wedding pictures here. Now I get to take some more pictures here!’’

    Bowditch is the second Australian to win on the US Tour this year, behind Jason Day.

    Meanwhile fellow Queenslander Karrie Webb had her best result for some time on the LPGA Tour this morning, finishing tied-fifth in the Shoprite LPGA Classic in New Jersey.

    Veteran Richard Green finished tied-10th in the European Tour’s Irish Open behind Soren Kjeldsen of Denmark.

    Story: Martin Blake / Golf Australia

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    Mount Coolum wins Pennants
    The club may be regarded as ‘little brother’ among the Sunshine Coast golfing fraternity but Mount Coolum has proved to be the great upstart of the 2015 Pennant season, winning both A and B grade titles.

    Fielding the youngest team in the history of the club, Mount Coolum beat defending minor premiers Headland 5 and 2 in the A grade final.

    The club’s first and only other A grade Pennant victory was in 2008. 

    But it was a different story in B grade, with the 4 and 3 win – again over Headland – the third win in seven final appearances during the past decade.

    Mt Coolum also finished minor premiers in both grades.

    According to Sunshine Coast Golf Zone Director of Golf Scott Mayes, who is a Mount Coolum member and played in the winning B grade team, the key to the success of the A grade team has been the club’s on-going cadet system.

    “Three young members of our team – TJ King, Lochie Coleborn and Zac Quirk – have come through the system which has been diligently run over the years by Barry and Denise Degenhardt, Kevin Smith, Yvonne Clohesy and Heather Gibbie,” he said. 

    “Since they were 10 and 12 years of age these boys have been at the club practising almost every day. This win has been a culmination of much hard work by the boys and wonderful dedication by their mentors.”

    The winning team was a mixture of age and experience, with two ‘40 somethings’, three 20-year-old's and three teenagers. 

    Scott Mitchell
    (37) captained the winning team which included Nigel Smyly (43), 23 year-old twins Stephan and Tiaan Scheepers, Todd Balkin (24), TJ King (18), Zac Quirk (17) and Lochie Coleborn (16). And Luke Parker (20) was a reserve.

    The win in the final was even more impressive considering Coleborn did not play. He was unavailable because of commitments with the Queensland Junior Squad, playing in the Northern Territory Open.

    Although beaten in the final, TJ King was named Player of the Year and at 18 is believed to be one the youngest recipient of this honour in A grade.

    A previous winner of the award – also as a teenager – was Steven Bowditch, a former Mt Coolum member.

    Sunshine Coast Pennant results for 2015 were: 

    • A grade: Mount Coolum beat Headland 5-2 (Player of the Year - TJ King Mt Coolum); 
    • B grade: Mount Coolum beat Headland 4-3 (Player of the Year - David Butler Peregian Springs); 
    • Masters: Headland beat Peregian Springs 4-3 (Player of the Year - Marc Bright Cooroy); 
    • Juniors:  Horton Park beat Nambour 3.5-1.5 (Player of the Year - Josh Taylor Nambour)

    We love hearing your stories! Send us your news to

    Story: Tony Durkin
    Photo: Mount Coolum A grade. Back (L-R): Zac Quirk, Todd Balkin, Stephan and Tiaan Scheepers; Front: TJ King, Scott Mitchell, Nigel Smyly.

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    Aussies slide down leaderboard

    Australia has stumbled to finish 10th at the Queen Sirikit Cup.

    With Hannah Green (77),
    Queensland's Becky Kay (80) and Liz Elmassian (81) uncustomarily battling in windy conditions on the Hong Kong Golf Club’s New Course, the team suffered its worst collective round of the tournament.

    With the best two daily scores counting towards the Asia Pacific team title, Australia’s three-round total of 448 left it 26 strokes adrift of winner Korea with Philippines runner-up and New Zealand third.

    Green finished tied eighth in the individual event at five over par, with Elmassian tied 25th on 12 over and Kay tied 31st on 14 over.

    Australian coach Tony Meyer said the women “just couldn’t find any momentum” as the team fell from fifth overnight.

    “All the girls had bad starts and just couldn’t really get it back on track after that,” he said.

    “It was just a disappointing finish to a good week.

    “But I’m certain that Becky and Liz would have taken plenty from the week and learnt a lot given they haven’t played in conditions like this before.”

    Korea’s domination of the event continued with its eighth win in nine years with Australia’s win in Chinese Taipei in 2013 the only exception since 2007.

    With Hyun Kyung Park (-7), Eun Soon Jang (-3) and Joung Eun Lee (E) finishing first, second and tied fourth respectively in the individual event, the powerhouse Korean team finished 14 strokes clear of its nearest rival.

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    Sheree Hasson captures 2015 Women's Country Championship

    Cairns Golf Club and Half Moon Bay Golf Club played host to the 2015 Women's Country Week Championships from Monday 18 May - Wednesday 20 May.

    Over 280 players from 38 clubs travelled to Far North Queensland for an exciting week of golf, with the Foursomes Championship beginning play on Monday and the individual championships playing out across the two courses on Tuesday and Wednesday.

    On Tuesday, Cairns Golf Club hosted Round one of the Silver and Bronze II Championships with Sheree Hasson (Mackay), Marion Wright (Half Moon Bay) and 2012 Women's Country Champion Eileen Thompson firing an opening round of 78 (+5) to hold a two stroke lead over Half Moon Bay Golf Club member Sarah Wilson.

    In the Bronze II Championship, Debbie Curnow (Rowes Bay) set the pace early, as she managed 40 points on the Cairns layout. 

    Over at Half Moon Bay, local member Sue Job led a large field of more than 110 players, including Rosemary Veitch who trailed by a single shot after the conclusion of the first round.

    On Wednesday, clear conditions greeted the players for Round two, with Silver and Bronze II teeing off at Half Moon Bay Golf Club and Bronze I players heading across to Cairns Golf Club.

    Solid performances on the Cairns course earlier gave Sheree Hasson and Eileen Thompson confidence and prevented them from separating as they played on the Half Moon Bay layout.

    Both players showed early promise with Thompson returning birdies on the seventh and ninth holes, and later firing a double bogey. 

    Hasson managed just one birdie for her round and both players couldn't be split, both returning rounds of 5-over par 76 and heading to extra holes.

    Unfortunately Thompson was unable to contest the play-off due to travel commitments in the afternoon and therefore Sheree Hasson from Mackay claimed the 2015 Women's Country Championship title.

    At Half Moon Bay, Debbie Curnow (Rowes Bay) produced 31 points, enough to close out the rest of the field and take the Bronze 2 by a massive eight points.

    Round two of the Bronze I Championship concluded at Cairns, where Rosemary Veitch (Rowes Bay 95,101-196) emerged victorious, three shots clear from Alice Nurthern (Half Moon Bay - 97,102-199). 

    In Division 2 of Bronze I, a count back was required and Clare Kirby (Sanctuary Cove) defeated Half Moon Bay member Jennifer Bussey.

    Marion Wright (Half Moon Bay) and Erina Williams (Cairns) played well together to take out the 2015 Women's Country Foursomes on Monday. 

    Wright and Williams shot 7-over par 80 to win by three strokes from the sister pairing of Eileen Thompson and Fiona Bell from Townsville.

    Congratulations to Cairns Golf Club and Half Moon Bay Golf Club for hosting a fantastic event, with special mention to both of the clubs' ladies committees who had put in hours of work to coordinate volunteers and make the 2015 Women's Country Week Championship a success. 

    In 2016, the Women's Country Week Championship will head south to the Gold Coast and both Southport Golf Club and Surfers Paradise Golf Clubs are looking forward to hosting upward of 400 players.

    For full results please click here.

    All photos from the tournament can be viewed on our Facebook page here.
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    Queensland men come off second best

    Victoria has completed an unprecedented clean sweep of state teams’ titles, downing Queensland 5-3 in the men’s final at Huntingdale.

    A day after winning the women’s championship at Royal Melbourne and less than a month after winning the girls’ and boys’ trophies in South Australia, history was made when Brett Coletta sealed his No.3 match 3&1.

    And then as the rest of the results fell Victoria’s way, the party began for the delirious home teams with the women’s squad watching in support.

    “It’s an awesome feeling,” Ben Eccles said after his quality match with Simon Viitakangas was halved, earning the Victorian skipper a medal as one of three unbeaten players for the week with five wins and two halves.

    “To have the girls and boys, then the women all win, we were really keen to get the four up today and it couldn't have worked out better.

    “It’s a really proud day for me, but mostly the state – to do that for the first time ever is almost unbelievable.

    “But we did it.”

    Victoria came hard out of the blocks and with David Micheluzzi four under and 5-up through seven holes against Jack Sullivan, his eventual 5&4 victory gave the home team a vital buffer.

    Thomas Power-Horan soon racked up his fifth win from six matches this week, dispatching the impressive Anthony Quayle 2&1 to add to the Vics’ comfort levels.

    But then things tightened up as Queensland showed the spirit it used to topple New South Wales to reach the final.

    Shae Wools-Cobb beat Andrew Schonewille 2&1 in the No.8 match and Blake Proverbs, the second of the unbeaten triumvirate, overcame Frazer Droop 2&1 after a roller-coaster ride throughout their tense match at No.5.

    But in terms of “wow factor”, however, the top match between Ryan Ruffels and Brisbane’s Taylor Macdonald had it all.

    Macdonald could scarcely have played better, bar for a couple of birdie putts sliding narrowly by.

    When he conceded Ruffels a birdie on the par-3 15th from inside 30cm, Macdonald was himself five under the card.

    But so imperious was Ruffels, who turned 17 on Wednesday, that that score was only good enough for a 5&3 defeat.

    Ruffels almost holed out on both the 15th and 3rd (10cm) and was an extraordinary 10 under par when he walked off.

    “I really didn’t want to let anyone down today,” said Ruffels, who was also a member of the winning boys’ team and won the individual national junior championship last month.

    “So I was really excited to be able to do that – it was an important day for Victorian golf, because those four wins have never happened before and it’s great to play my part.”

    Ruffels was 2-up early with birdies on the first and third, but gave one back when Macdonald almost aced the fifth, testament to the quality of the match.

    Macdonald’s eagle putt on the seventh sat on the lip, but Ruffels made a miraculous up-and-down birdie to halve the hole and start a birdie blitz that incredibly lasted six straight holes as the Queenslander was left just shaking his head.

    Senior squad rookie Brett Coletta fought a ripping match at No.3, which looked headed Queensland’s way when Jake McLeod led 1-up after 13 holes.

    But the emerging Coletta dug deep to win three holes in a row when it mattered most for his 3&1 triumph, sealing the title for Victoria.

    It didn’t, however, finish two stunning matches that, in the end, could not be split.

    Eccles scrambled impeccably for a par up the last as he and Viitakangas ended square after each player led at stages of a tense match.

    And then Cory Crawford had a chance to edge out Lucas Herbert in the No.2 match with a 4m putt on the last hole, but his birdie try slid by and the match was halved to seal the 5-3 final result and allow the party to begin in earnest.

    In the consolation matches, New South Wales ensured it finished third with a hard-fought 4.5-3.5 win over Western Australia.

    WA ace Jarryd Felton completed a superb week with a 3&2 win over Australian Amateur champion Cam Davis to remarkably remain unbeaten this week in the No.1 slot at an incredible collective 28 under par (estimated).

    In the playoff for fifth, South Australia breezed past Tasmania 6-2 with Antonio Murdaca winning the top match against Greg Longmore 2&1.

    Story: Mark Hayes / Golf Australia

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    Queensland women finish third in the Australian Women’s Interstate Series
    After four days of competition at Royal Melbourne Golf Club (East Course), the Queensland Women’s state team have finished in third place after defeating South Australia 3.5-2.5 in the first consolation final on Thursday 30 April.

    Day one commenced on Monday 27 April and the women’s team locked in their first win in Round 1 against South Australia with 3.5-1.5. 

    It wasn’t an easy start for the women as South Australia looked strong leading in four matches after nine holes. 

    Yet, the opponents were unable to pull through and Gennai Goodwin and Karis Davidson brought home the win in their No.2 and No.1 matches respectively.

    The team played Tasmania in Round 2 defeating the team 4.5-0.5, the highlight being Robyn Choi’s 7&6 win in the No.4 match, resulting in an undefeated first day for the Queensland women.

    On day two, Queensland faced their first loss against hosts Victoria. 

    Robyn Choi commenced play in the No.5 match defeating opponent Bianca Ling 7&5.

    The Victorians managed to scrape through in the No.4 and No.3 matches with both matches halved. 

    Victorian captain Joanna Charlton edged out national squad member Rebecca Kay 2&1 in the No.2 match.

    Victoria’s Julienne Soo followed suit defeating Karis Davidson 2&1 in the No.1 match and settling Victoria’s win of 3-2 over the Queensland women.

    Round 4 saw Queensland fight back to claim a victory over New South Wales with a final score of 3-2.

    After play concluded on day two, it was clear Victoria was through to the finals and their opponent was determined in a final-round shootout between Queensland and Western Australia on Wednesday.

    The Round 5 decider proved too much for the Queensland women who succumbed to the pressure and lost out 2-3 to WA. 

    Yet, the women qualified for the first consolation final on Thursday and managed a win over SA 3.5-2.5 to place third in the interstate series.

    In the women’s final, team Victoria was victorious over Western Australia with 3.5-2.5.

    A great effort by the Queensland women’s team, coach Richard Woodhouse and team manager Shirley Dean

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    Queensland scuppers rivals' hopes
    Queensland will play Victoria in the final of the men’s Interstate Teams Championship.

    The Queenslanders put paid to the mathematical chances of New South Wales and Western Australia when they breezed past South Australia 7-0 this morning at Huntingdale.

    NSW held up its end of the bargain by pounding the Northern Territory 7-0, but finished a half-point behind Queensland, with the idle WA team a further half-point behind in fourth.

    Victoria edged past the gallant Tasmanians 4-3 to remain unbeaten in the preliminary rounds and will be chasing history tomorrow against Queensland.

    With its women’s, boys’ and girls’ teams all successful in the national championship in the past month, a win to the men tomorrow will provide an unprecedented sweep.

    NSW will face WA in the third-place playoff with Tasmania against South Australia in a battle for fifth.

    The Northern Territory finished winless in seventh place, but won four matches for the week in a memorable and successful debut in the championship.
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    Queensland wins epic tussle

    It didn’t have the biffo, but Queensland and New South Wales fought out a classic Interstate Teams Championship state-of-origin-style tussle on Day 3 of the Series.

    And with a likely final berth against Victoria on the line, it came right down to the last match until Queensland emerged victorious 4-3 after a gripping battle.

    The states alternated victories in a tense final hour with some brilliant shot-making under pressure.

    But ironically, the 17th hole – the 11th at Huntingdale – halved in bogeys was enough for national squad member Cory Crawford to seal a 2&1 victory in the No.2 match for the Queenslanders to be in front when it mattered.

    The result left Queensland tied for second with Western Australia on the ladder with Victoria clear and assured of its final berth.

    But WA has the bye in the final round on Thursday, meaning any points from either NSW or Queensland will eliminate it.

    Queensland will advance with a win over South Australia, while New South Wales will qualify with a win over the Northern Territory and a Queensland halve or worse.

    Tasmania’s afternoon 4.5-2.5 loss to WA took it out of contention, while South Australia ensured Northern Territory will finish seventh with a 7-0 thumping of the newcomers.

    Crawford, Jake McLeod, Blake Proverbs and Anthony Quayle all saluted for Queensland against NSW, which had Kevin Yuan, Troy Moses and Cam Davis victorious.

    Quayle, originally from the NT, was sublime in the No.7 match winning 6&4 to set the ball rolling and from then on, McLeod said it had a “state of origin feel” to it.

    “It’s a big rivalry, especially in league, so it feels good,” McLeod said.

    “We were looking pretty good with (Quayle) and Blake had a late win on the 17th before things got a bit tighter… it’s a great feeling to win a tight one like that as a team.”

    McLeod, who has won 3.5 of a possible five points this week largely by weaving magic with his putter, said his 4&2 result over Travis Smyth belied the match’s closeness.

    “Trav played well (but) I just putted well and made a few too many birdies for him in the end.

    “They’re nice and receptive (greens), so you can land it up next to the pin, hit it close and give it a good roll – I like them.”

    But McLeod said there was no room for complacency with South Australia more than capable of an upset on Thursday morning.

    “We can’t get a head of ourselves. We’ve just got to play our own game and get the wins we need to get in the final.”

    Earlier in the day, Victoria – which had the afternoon bye – became the first team through courtesy of its impressive depth.

    Despite Jarryd Felton’s impressive win over Victorian ace Ryan Ruffels the hosts won through 4.5-2.5.

    The Vics, though, turned to Brett Coletta (2-up over Kiran Day), skipper Ben Eccles (4&2 over Min Woo Lee) and unsung heroes David Micheluzzi and Thomas Power-Horan to seal a place in the final before having the afternoon off.

    Coach Marty Joyce was delighted with his team’s even performance.

    “They’re doing a very good job all the way through. The bottom four have been playing fantastic which is nice because a lot of the battles have been close going into the back nine,” Joyce said.

    “It gives us great confidence, absolutely. The team is very strong as a whole and a lot of the guys could be playing in different spots.

    “But the nice thing is they’re more comfortable playing in their spot, playing for a win and not worried about what position they’re in because at the end of the day we need four wins each time, regardless of where they come from.”

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    Registration for Olympic golf tickets opens
    If you’ve been waiting a lifetime to see golf in the Olympics, here’s your chance.

    As golf returns to the Games for the first time since 1904, you can now register your interest for tickets to personally welcome it back to the Olympic family in Brazil next year.

    The Australian Olympic Committee has launched the ticketing process for the Rio Games with residents having until May 5 to register their interest in attending the first Olympics ever held in South America.

    The AOC announced today it had joined again with CoSport as its authorised ticket reseller through website which will run the ballot and ticketing process.

    “For our athletes and fans alike, there are few experiences more exhilarating than being part of competition on the world stage,” Australian Chef de Mission Kitty Chiller said.

    “Together with CoSport, we are excited to extend an invitation to Australian fans from around the country to share this truly once-in-a-lifetime experience.”

    CoSport managing director Grant Little said his company had a “deep knowledge of Brazil” and offered an “exciting variety” of individual ticket and package options.

    “Our hotel and tickets packages especially simplify attending the Rio 2016 Olympic Games so our guests can focus on enjoying this once-in-a-lifetime experience. There will be plenty of opportunities to choose from once sales open, but the best packages will surely go fast,” Little said.

    The initial ballot closes on May 5 at 10am and by May 11, CoSport will confirm with fans which requested tickets have been secured and advise the payment process.

    Tickets start for as little as $27 to preliminary rounds in a range of sports and for sports such as marathon swimming and mountain biking in open precincts.

    Tickets to watch an athletics session which features a range of finals including the women’s 100m hurdles final, where Sally Pearson hopes to defend her Olympic title, start from $175 and range to $574.

    One of the iconic experiences of the Games will be beach volleyball on Copacabana Beach, with tickets to pool matches ranging from $33 to $67.

    The most expensive ticket at the Games is a prime seat at the opening ceremony for $2654.

    After the initial ballot phase, the next opportunity for Australian Olympic fans to purchase tickets will occur on May 19 as part of a first come, first served process.
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    Queensland, Victoria locked in battle
    The Interstate Teams Championship has begun in Melbourne with Victoria and Queensland locked in heavyweight battle in men’s competition.

    In showery conditions at Huntingdale, Queenslander Cory Crawford has clawed back from an early deficit to put the visitors right back in the hunt through nine holes.

    Crawford was two down to Lucas Herbert after the powerful Victorian was conceded a birdie on the par-five 14th hole.

    But Crawford wrested back the momentum with a spectacular approach to the 16th for birdie and turned all square.

    Queensland's No.3 Jake McLeod has Brett Coletta under the pump with a 3-up lead through the turn, with teammate Anthony Quayle also 1-up on David Micheluzzi.

    But Tom Power-Horan, Frazer Droop and Ryan Ruffels each lead for Victoria in a tense battle.

    In other men’s matches, South Australia has a decided edge over Tasmania with leads in four matches and two others square.

    But in a slight turn-up, Tassie’s No.1 Greg Longmore is 2-up through 10 holes over South Australian ace Antonio Murdaca.

    Northern Territory’s Mitch Gridley is 1-up through 16 against Western Australia’s Ben Seward in the Territory’s first ever match at Interstate Series level.

    WA leads four of the seven matches against NT, with two others square.

    In women’s matches on Royal Melbourne’s East Course, Victoria has won the week’s first point with Grace Daniell beating Tasmanian Sharon Crowden 8&7.

    But the hosts aren’t having it all their own way with Tassie up in two other matches through nine holes.

    In a potentially bigger shock, though, South Australia leads Queensland in four matches after nine holes, with Ella Adams leading 3-up against Robyn Choi with six holes to play in their No.4 encounter.

    Powerhouses Western Australia and New South Wales are locked in another tense battle with Jessica Whiting already securing one match for WA and Paige Stubbs likewise for NSW.

    Perth’s Hannah Green is 4-up over Liz Elmassian in the No.1 match, with the No.2 and No.3 matches all critical.

    Story: Mark Hayes / Golf Australia

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    Australian Interstate Teams Matches commence in Victoria
    The Australian Interstate Teams Matches will run from Monday 27 April until Friday 1 May, 2015 in Victoria.

    The Interstate Teams Matches are Australia’s premier Amateur Team Golf Championships with each State team contesting singles match play in a round robin format, concluding with a final.

    The men’s competition will be played at Huntingdale Golf Club with each team consisting of eight players.

    The Women’s Interstate Teams play for the Galdys Hay Memorial Trophy and will play at Royal Melbourne Golf Club with each team consisting of six players.

    Queensland’s State Women’s Team:

    • Robyn Choi (Royal Pines)
    • Karis Davidson (Sanctuary Cove)
    • Gennai Goodwin (Indooroopilly)
    • Kirsty Hodgkins (Redcliffe)
    • Rebecca Kay (Coolangatta-Tweed)
    • Amy Walsh (Palmer Gold Coast)
    • Women’s Coach: Richard Woodhouse
    • Women’s Team Manager: Shirley Dean

    Queensland State Men’s Team:

    • Cory Crawford (Sanctuary Cove)
    • Taylor Macdonald (Redcliffe)
    • Jake McLeod (Royal Queensland)
    • Jake Proverbs (Pacific)
    • Anthony Quayle (Sanctuary Cove)
    • Jack Sullivan (Palmer Gold Coast)
    • Simon Viitakangas (Palmer Gold Coast)
    • Shae Wools-Cobb (Horton Park)
    • Men’s Coach: Tony Meyer
    • Men’s Team Manager: Matthew Toomey 

    Stay up-to-date with all the results streamed through the Golf Queensland Twitter account here.

    Photos of the tournament will be uploaded daily to the Golf Queensland Facebook page here.
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    Smith cashes in again
    Queenslander Cameron Smith has recorded his second top-15 finish in a remarkable US PGA Tour season.

    Smith, a Golf Australia rookie squad member, carved out six birdies in a four-under-par round of 67 at Harbour Town Golf Links in South Carolina this morning to seal a T15 finish in the RBC Heritage.

    Playing on a sponsor’s invitation, the 21-year-old finished at nine under, nine shots behind champion Jim Furyk who beat Kevin Kisner in a playoff.

    Smith’s stellar play on the Asian Tour – six consecutive top 10s late last year -- earnt him a start in the co-sanctioned CIMB Classic in Malaysia where he cashed in with a T5, the first player in six years on PGA Tour debut with a top-10 finish.

    He has now parlayed that into six starts from which he has banked $366,300, giving him a great leg-up towards a Tour berth next year – and even the faint hope of a card on the big tour if he can shine at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans this week.

    Both Smith and fellow rookie squad member Oliver Goss will tee up in Louisiana.

    This morning’s win for Furyk came on the back of an impressive 11 birdies in 20 holes, including two in the gripping playoff with the winner on the par-three 17th.

    It was the American veteran’s 17th career victory on US PGA Tour, but he roared with obvious delight and relief when he broke a 100-start winless drought dating back five years.

    Though still ranked 10th in the world, the 2003 US Open champ had been winless in nine attempts while leading through 54 holes since the 2010 Tour Championship.

    ''I think getting excited on 17 there was a lot of pent-up frustrations,'' said Furyk, who closed with a 63.

    “I was starting to feel like this game is beating me up, and the losing hurts a lot more than winning feels good.

    ''I think I just forgot how good it feels to win.”

    Masters and Australian Open champion Jordan Spieth closed with a 70 to finish T11 at 10 under.

    Story: Mark Hayes / Golf Australia
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    Golf Queensland announces two-year sponsorship with Srixon

    Golf Queensland is pleased to announce Srixon’s commitment as a sponsor until 2017.

    Srixon will return as a sponsor for the 2015 Isuzu Queensland Open and major sponsor of the Queensland Men’s Mid-Amateur Championships.

    In addition, Srixon have committed to a new venture coming on board as a major sponsor of the Queensland Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur Championship.

     The Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur Championships will be played from 7 to 9 December at the Indooroopilly Golf Club.

    Managing Director for Srixon, Martin Wright said the company was pleased to partner with Golf Queensland and support another State-based Championship.  

    “Junior events such as the Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur are important for the growth of golf and we’re excited to add another pinnacle event to the agreement”.

    Golf Queensland Manager of Golf Operations Luke Bates said he was looking forward to seeing the success of the new partnership with Srixon on top of their returning sponsorship agreements. 

     “Srixon has provided invaluable support for Golf Queensland in previous years and their continued support is only testament of the quality of golf in Queensland.”

     About the Queensland Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur Championship 

    The Queensland Boy’s and Girl’s Amateur is the pinnacle Junior Championship in Queensland and is a three-day event comprising of 72 holes.

    Past winners include Karrie Webb, Katherine Kirk (nee Hull), Rachel Hetherington, Greg Norman, Wayne Grady, Peter Senior, Adam Scott, Jason Day, Andrew Dodt and Cameron Smith. 

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    Queensland Boys' Place Fifth in the 2015 Interstate Series
    The Australian Boys’ Interstate Teams Matches played from 13 – 17 April 2015 at Links Lady Bay Golf Club in South Australia and saw the Queensland State Boys’ Team finish in 5th place (20.5 matches won) at conclusion of play on Thursday.

    The Queensland boys’ team included 2015 Junior Male Amateur Golfer of the Year Doug Klein, 2014 Greg Norman Junior Masters Champion Charlie Pilon, Chris Park, Lawry Flynn, Louis Dobbelaar and Steven Cox.

    The boys claimed their first win on day one of competition up against Tasmania with 4 – 1. 

    Round two saw the boys against hosts South Australia in a tough fight for the win. Queensland’s No. 5 Louis Dobbelaar secured the 3 – 2 round win after his 3&2 win over Travis Miller.

    On day two Queensland claimed a 4 – 1 win over the Northern Territory before going on to play a tense battle against New South Wales. 

    Queensland captain Doug Klein finished the No. 1 match with a 3&2 win over Jason Hong to have the match halved.

    Play concluded on day two and Queensland was tied with New South Wales and Victoria all at the top of the table on 3.5 points.

    Day four and Queensland lost round five to Western Australia (1.5 – 3.5), yet managed to come back in round six with a 4 – 1 win over the ACT. 

    Unfortunately, the last day of competition didn’t see any success and the Queensland boys lost to Victoria (3.5 – 1.5). 

    Thirteen-year-old Louis Dobbelaar was undefeated and wasn’t going to let Victorian Aiden Didone break his run in the No. 5 match which ended in a half-point for each state after both players parred the last hole.

    The No. 4 match saw Queensland’s Charles Pilon go down to Konrad Ciupek of Victoria with 4&2.

    Chris Park managed a win, Queensland’s only, in his No. 3 match with his 10m birdie bomb on the 17th and he went on to win 2-up with a final hole par.
    The No. 2 match saw Steven Cox make huge putts on the 16th and 17th holes to have the match square going up the last but after a misjudged putt he went down with Victoria’s Cameron John winning 1-up.

    The final match of the round saw Victoria seal their win with Ryan Ruffels defeating Queensland’s Doug Klein 2&1 in the No. 1 match.

    The Victorian boys’ team took out the title and completed a clean sweep in the Interstate Series after the Girls’ title was secured a day earlier.

    After all play concluded, the Queensland Boys’ Interstate team finished in 5th place behind championship winners Victoria, Western Australia (2nd), New South Wales (3rd) and South Australia (4th). 

    Despite not placing, Queensland’s Louis Dobbelaar finished undefeated in the series - at just 13 years of age, this is an outstanding effort!

    To read a wrap report on the Girls' Interstate Series, click here.

    For full results and information, visit the Golf Australia championships page here

    Photo: nEverest Photography
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    Playgolf WEEK 2015 Dates Announced
    If you’ve ever wanted to play golf, put this week in your calendar.

    The second annual Playgolf WEEK 2015 will run from Monday, October 26 through to Sunday, November 1.

    Playgolf WEEK is an event to inspire and motivate people to give golf a go and play more often.

    It provides a great opportunity for facilities to promote all aspects of their venue, increase their revenue and engage with their local community. 

    The 2014 event saw nearly 200 facilities Australia-wide take part in Playgolf WEEK, with over 7,000 people attending activities throughout the week.

    For facilities or people wanting to know more about Playgolf WEEK, or for a full report on the 2014 event, please contact the Playgolf WEEK Team on 03 9626 5050 or
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    Queensland Girls' State Team End Four-Year Winning Streak to Victoria
    The Australian Girls’ Interstate Teams Matches for the Burtta Cheney Cup played from 13 - 16 April 2015 at Fleurieu Golf Club in South Australia and saw reigning champions, Queensland, admit defeat in an upset fourth round against Victoria.

    The Queensland girls’ team included 2015 Australian Ladies Master Leading Amateur and Golf Australia National Squad member Rebecca Kay and 2014 Golf Queensland Junior Female Amateur of the Year Karis Davidson

    The girls were joined by Robyn Choi, Stacey White and Kate Law in the three-day round robin format of competition. 

    After six title wins over the past eight years, including a more recent four-year winning streak, the Queensland girls’ team went into play as strong favourites. 

    Day one of competition saw Queensland defeat South Australia 3.5 - 1.5 with Karis Davidson, Robyn Choi and Kate Law successfully overcoming their southern opponents. 

    The No. 4 match saw Stacey White’s score halved against Jin-Young Yun and Rebecca Kay went down 3&2 to Cassidy Everniadis of South Australia.

    Glorious conditions on day two of competition set the tone for the Queensland girls as they defeated Western Australia in a whitewash 5 – 0.

    Next up was Round 4 against Victoria and they started confident as Robyn Choi secured the first point with a 3&2 win over Zara Woodbridge. 

    This familiar confidence was quickly put to rest when Victorians Alexandra Hilliard and Cheerie Tan defeated Queensland girls, Kate Law and Kirsty Hodgkins in the No. 3 and No.4 matches. 

    It didn’t stop there and Stephanie Bunque of Victoria played a 2m par putt on the 17th hole to give her a 2&1 win over Queensland’s Karis Davidson

    In the No. 1 match, Victorian captain Olivia Kline played a birdie on the 18th to defeat Rebecca Kay and cement Victoria’s round win and championship title after four straight wins throughout the competition.

    Not going down without a fight, the Queensland girls defeated NSW 3.5-1.5 in the final round of competition with Kirsty Hodgkins and Robyn Choi overcoming opponents 3&1 and 5&3 respectively.

    As a result, the Queensland Girls’ State Team finished competition in second place with three wins and one loss ahead of New South Wales.

    To read a wrap report on the Boys' Interstate Series, click here.

    For full results and information visit Golf Australia’s Championships page here

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    Vics topple giants to seal title
    If you believe golf is played above the shoulders, the Victorian girls’ team is your proof.

    The Vics left the highly fancied New South Wales and Queensland teams in their wake on Tuesday, stunning each en route to sealing an early victory at the Girls’ Interstate Teams championship in South Australia.

    And with a bye on Wednesday morning, the party started early Tuesday night with manager Jo Charlton promising her charges “plenty of ice cream and chocolate” in celebration.

    The Vics entered the week ranked fifth of five teams by the Australian rankings, but that mattered little to the team of Olivia Kline, Stephanie Bunque, Cheerie Tan, Zara Woodbridge, Alex Hilliard and Soo Bin Park who triumphed all four times they played Fleurieu Golf Course at Mount Compass.

    “It’s a really testing course and we just told the girls that pars would get the job done,” Charlton said.

    “So we just talked about hitting fairways and greens and not much else and that’s exactly what they did.

    “It’s incredible and the girls are justifiably rapt – we all are.”

    Victoria hung tough in the morning match against NSW, with Park‘s 2&1 triumph over Antonia Gonzalez in the No.5 match setting the tone.

    Then with undefeated Bunque and Tan leading the charge in the afternoon, the Big V took down the powerhouse Queenslanders 4-1 to give Victoria its first interstate title since 2007.

    “That’s the beauty of matchplay, it’s anyone’s game,” Charlton said.

    “They’ve worked really well all week and they’re a great little unit … we’re a happy little camp.

    “All the girls have really improved in the past year, but we didn’t expect this.

    “You always go in with a bit of faith and do the simple things well and we thought third would be great.

    “But once you have that belief, anything is possible.”

    Queensland, which has won six of the past eight titles, were confident after off a morning 5-0 win over WA and had Robyn Choi earn the first point with a 3&2 win over Woodbridge.

    But after Hilliard and Tan saluted, Bunque set the team into celebration mode with a 2m par putt on the 17th hole to give her a 2&1 win over red-hot Karis Davidson and seal overall victory.

    To cap it off, captain Kline then made a birdie on the 18th to beat Golf Australia national squad member Becky Kay 1-up in the No.1 match.

    In the other afternoon match, NSW edged past WA 3-2, meaning that WA and SA will play for fourth tomorrow morning, with Queensland and NSW fighting for second.

    Story: Mary Hayes / Golf Australia
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    Boys going by halves
    The stage is set for an epic conclusion to the Boys’ Interstate Teams championship with four states still right in the hunt.

    A tense afternoon of Round 4 matches left more questions than it answered at Links Lady Bay today after the top four teams remarkably shared the spoils.

    Queensland and New South Wales could each have put the other on the back foot, but fought out a tense halved match with skipper Douglas Klein winning 3&2 in the No.1 battle with Jason Hong.

    In theory that could have opened the door for Victoria, but a determined Western Australia had different ideas.

    The Sandgropers had unexpectedly halved their morning match with South Australia, but when Connor Faulds and Cameron Jones beat Vics Aiden Didone and Matias Sanchez, respectively, an afternoon upset looked on.

    But Cameron John beat Ben Ferguson 1-up and captain Ryan Ruffels trounced Min Woo Lee 6&5, the Vics salvaged half a point.

    The result left Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria tied on 3.5 of a possible four points, with WA poised on three.

    And host South Australia remains a mathematical chance on 1.5 after beating ACT this afternoon, while Tasmania opened its account with a 4-1 win over the Northern Territory.

    But it’s so close at the top, WA manager Darren Goss couldn’t split the teams.

    “Honestly it’s so close and it’s such high quality, you can’t call it,” Goss said tonight.

    “It’s a really good matchplay course with an open nine for the big hitters and a tighter one for the thinkers, so it’s just really close.”

    WA was extremely close to upsetting the fancied Victorians with John rolling in a 5m bomb on the last hole of his match, the sixth at Lady Bay, for his 1-up victory over Ferguson.

    “It was an amazing finish. But it was like that all the way around with most of the boys,” Goss said.

    “At one stage, Fred Lee (and Josh Hetherington) were about 35 feet away from the pin for their birdie putts and couldn’t decide who was away.

    “They tossed a coin to decide, then both of them just rolled in their putts. It was unbelievable golf.”

    Goss said his WA charges were confident they could continue on with matches to come against NSW and Queensland among their final three rounds.

    “All the boys played brilliant. Everyone’s confident and it’s matchplay, so anything can happen, especially the way it’s working out.”
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    Queensland Juniors Path a Promising Future
    The Australian Girls’ and Boys’ Amateur was held at the Tee Tree Gully and Kooyonga Golf Club’s in South Australia last week with several promising Queensland juniors dominating the field inside the top 20. 

    Queensland was well represented with 40 boys and 17 girls in the field of the 140 juniors competing in the tournament. 

    They competed against a star studded field with the boys gaining five top 20 finishes, and the girls earning seven spots in the top 20.

    Christopher Jimenez (Royal Queensland) was the top ranking male Queenslander placing tied fourth with rounds of 70, 72, 74, and 74 (290) after sharing the midway lead with defending Victorian Champion Ryan Ruffels. 

    Myoung Kim (Lakelands) was among the contenders only three shots behind (293) placing ninth while 2014 Golf Queensland Junior Male Amateur Golfer of the Year Douglas Klein (Redcliffe) finished with six over par (294) taking out 11th place. 

    Hills International’s Charles Pilon and Lakelands’ Chris Park also earned spots within the top 20 placing 13th and 15th respectively. 

    In the Girls’ competition, Sanctuary Cove’s Karis Davidson and Coolangatta Tweed’s Rebecca Kay were favourites leading into the tournament with each earning respective Amateur title achievements within the last month. 

    After a slow start with 75, followed by a promising four-under-par 69 on the second day, Davidson duly responded to a playoff with Sydney’s Celina Yuan. 

    The tense playoff resulted in an Australian Girls’ Amateur title for Yuan after a birdie on the third extra hole. 

    Davidson followed through and finished runner-up  (293) for the second consecutive year with fellow Queenslander Kirsty Hodgkins (Redcliffe) earning fourth place (297). 

    The remaining Queensland girls finished in a strong suit as Jiwon Jeon (Hills International) placed equal six with fellow Queenslander Robyn Choi (Royal Pines), both scoring 300. 

    Golf Australia National Squad Member Rebecca Kay stumbled through the second day with rounds of 75, 80, 74, and 77 to place 13th. 

    Rounding out the top 20 for Queensland was Pacific Golf Club’s Stacey White with 308 and Yun Eun Eunice Kim (Lakelands) with 313.

    We wish the Queensland Girls’ and Boys’ Teams well with their endeavour’s to take out their respective Australian titles in South Australia this week.
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    Regional Junior Clinics take off in North Queensland
    The 2015 Junior Regional Clinics have kicked off in North Queensland with 40 keen juniors registered to attend.

    The two-day clinics are set to take place at Rowes Bay Golf Club in Townsville and Mareeba Golf Club in Cairns from 13-14 April 2015 and Bargara Golf Club from 4-5 July 2015. 

    At the clinics, juniors are afforded a fantastic opportunity to develop their golfing ability and exposure to Golf Queensland’s High Performance pathway.

    The two-day clinic is at a cost of $70 per participant which includes coaching (from a Golf Queensland coach and local Professional), technical analysis, acceleration and all meals and drinks.

    There are numerous opportunities to improve their game through both personal and social development, plus access to improved coaching and education programs including with state coaches and selectors.

    The Regional Junior Clinics play an important role in Golf Queensland’s development division and also gives the state team coaches the opportunity to work and connect with local community coaches.

    Golf Queensland Participation Development Officer Adrian Hewat highlights the importance of the clinics to drive development and exposure of our High Performance Program at an early age throughout the state.

     “This grassroots approach is imperative in building and maintaining relationships within the coaching teams across the state and is important in providing Queensland players with the best possible coaching and education,” says Hewat.

    “Each year we see success in our juniors and I look forward to seeing many more junior golfers from regional Queensland at next year’s clinics.”

    Follow us on Facebook here to see updates throughout the clinics. 

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    Karis gets her SA groove back
    Emerging Queenslander Karis Davidson has renewed her passion for South Australia, storming to the lead in the Australian Girls’ Amateur Championship.

    Davidson, runner-up in the Australian Amateur at The Grange last year, systematically picked her way through the field today with a bogey-free second round of four-under-par 69.

    Her exemplary form at Tea Tree Gully Golf Club, near Adelaide, gave her a three-shot buffer with 36 holes to be played on tomorrow’s final day.

    Sydney’s Celina Yuan (70) and New Zealender Brooke Hamilton (72) shot sub-par rounds today to join first-round leader Olivia Kline (77), of Melbourne, at one over in a tie for second.

    The only other red number of the day was posted by Perth’s Hira Naveed, whose 71 brought her back into the frame at six over after an opening 81.

    The shock of the day came when Golf Australia national squad member Becky Kay stumbled through three double-bogeys to manage an 80, which left her 11 shots off the -3 pace of her fellow Queenslander.

    Davidson, 16, a member at Sanctuary Cove, said she enjoyed the South Australian conditions.

    “It’s mainly because the courses here are pretty tight with plenty of trees and it really just makes you focus in on your shots because you’ll get in trouble if you’re not straight,” she said.

    “And the greens are soft and smooth, so you can putt with confidence.”

    Davidson, whose personal-best tournament round is five under, said she wouldn’t do anything different in tomorrow’s final rounds.

    “I had a good day today … happy I didn’t make any bogeys. I’ll just try my best tomorrow, have fun and see how it goes,” she said.
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    Kolar bubbles as leaders stall
    Some cracking scores lit up the Australian Boys’ Amateur Championship today – but oddly not at the top of a crowded leaderboard.

    Sydney’s Daniel Kolar peeled off a Kooyonga championship course record five-under-par 67 in today’s second round, but, like several around him to make their move, he was coming from a fair way back.

    World No.16 amateur and defending champion Ryan Ruffels, of Victoria, shares the midway lead at two under with Christopher Jimenez, of Queensland, after both followed opening 70s with 72s.

    First-round bolter Fred Lee, of Perth, fired a 73 to share third at one under with Jason Hong, who was one of a handful of players to push forward as the leaders stalled.

    Hong’s 70 was bettered by fellow Sydneysider Blake Windred (69), who shares fifth with Melburnian Cameron John (69), Canberra’s Josh Armstrong (69) and Kiwi visitor Daniel Hillier (68).

    But it was Kolar who stole the spotlight in Adelaide.

    The 17-year-old from St Michaels actually made an eagle on his last hole of the first round to finish with a 79.

    And using that momentum, he came out firing in the second round with birdies on the first, second, and fourth holes en route to seven birdies of an ultra-attacking round.

    “It was pretty good. I didn’t play too badly (on Wednesday), but didn’t have much luck,” Kolar said.

    “Today a couple of putts dropped and that’s the difference, I suppose.

    “It was good to back in contention a little bit, but I’ll have to have another one of them tomorrow … I’m still a fair way back.”

    Of the other pre-tournament fancies, Perth’s Min Woo Lee fired a 73 to sit at three over alongside Brisbane’s Douglas Klein (74).

    The field was cut to 63 at 12 over par or better, with the final 36 holes to be played in a Friday marathon.

    Story: Mark Hayes / Golf Australia
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    Kline's all out attack pays off
    Olivia Kline’s sparkling attacking flair has given her a cosy early lead in the Australian Girls’ Amateur Championship in Adelaide.

    The Melburnian was the only golfer under-par on the demanding Tea Tree Gully layout today – but her three-under-par 70 was anything but routine as she built a three-shot gap after the first of four rounds.

    Kline, 17, of Victoria Golf Club, extraordinarily made three bogeys and a double-bogey, yet offset them with a brilliant attacking barrage around the long course.

    She made five birdies – on the 5th, 7th, 8th, 15th and 17th holes – and threw in an eagle on the par-five 10th hole for good measure.

    The Victorian captain in next week’s teams event, Kline leads Malaysia’s Ashley Lau Jen Wen by three strokes, with Queenslander Kirsty Hodgkins and South Australian Cassidy Evreniadis another shot back after each fired a one-over 74.

    Pre-tournament fancies Becky Kay and Karis Davidson, both of Queensland, each fired 75 to be five back, but still in touch, while defending champ, Victoria’s Kono Matsumoto has work to do after her opening 79.

    At the other end of the scale, a score of 92 might not immediately set hearts racing, but a closer inspection of Sophie Yip’s score might change the perspective.

    Yip, of New South Wales, is just 10 years old and in her first national girls’ championship – but you can bet it won’t be her last.

    Story: Mark Hayes / Golf Australia
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    Mystery man Freddy Lee stuns them all
    There are remarkable golf stories – and then there’s the one about Australian Boys’ Amateur Championship leader Fred Lee.

    Lee, 15, fired a career-best 69 today to lead a star-studded field at Kooyonga Golf Club in Adelaide.

    And if that wasn’t remarkable enough, consider this: Lee rarely plays competitive golf – of any description.

    The impeccably mannered Perth teen instead chooses to practise his technique with teaching pro Craig Bishop, rarely bringing his skills to the course.

    “I’m really quite excited, it’s the first time I’ve ever shot three under,” Lee said of his round that gave him a one-shot buffer over Victorian Ryan Ruffels and Queensland’s Christopher Jimenez, the only golfers under par.

    “When I play, I’m normally pretty steady around par or one under, but I don’t get out very often to play.

    “I just practise every day, but just working on basics, rather than playing on the course.

    “I enjoy that, too, but mainly just to learn to read the greens.”

    Lee, a member at Royal Perth, but who rarely plays competition rounds at the South Perth venue, said he spends more time with his father David, a one-time 12-handicapper who largely shelved golf when Fred was born.

    “I surprised myself, actually. I started out wanting to be aggressive when I needed to be and patient when I needed to be,” he said.

    “But I judged my shots well and worked off the yardage book pretty well.”

    Lee, who plays off +1, confessed a limited knowledge of many of his rivals this week, having spent precious little time in tournaments.

    But remarkably, he idolises defending champion Ruffels, a comparative veteran aged 16.

    “I know Ryan. It’s actually a goal of mine to play with him – I think he’s outstanding.

    “My goal is to be like Ryan Ruffels, he’s an inspiration. So is (West Australian teammate) Minwoo Lee, they inspire a lot of people.”

    The pristine Kooyonga was a stern test today, despite playing a shorter length than its maximum.

    Most of the pre-tournament fancies are within reach of the lead, with Minwoo Lee firing a 74, one stroke better than last year’s runner-up Blake Windred and rising Victorian Cameron John.

    Queensland is well represented with Douglas Klein (73) and the impressive Charles Pilon (72) poised after the first of four rounds.

    Both Pilon and Ruffels made double-bogey on the tough par-four eighth hole, preventing them from even better finishes.

    Round 2 will be played tomorrow before the field is cut to 60 plus ties for 36 holes on Friday.

    Story: Mark Hayes / Golf Australia
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    Dann wins with six-under score
    A four-hole birdie blitz on the final day of the 2015 Sunshine Coast Men’s Open amateur golf championship at Headland Golf Club over the Easter weekend helped local Charlie Dann to yet another big tournament win.

    Dann, who plays out of Pelican Waters, shot rounds of 72 and 66 to return an impressive six-under par score and win the Tate Professional Engineers-sponsored event by one shot from Chris Crabtree (also Pelican Waters) and Headland’s Matt Walkenhorst.

    An impressive field of 220, including 30 players with a scratch handicap or better, teed off in the 56th annual event. Five players broke par, with Ash Grosvenor (Keperra) and defending champion David Grenfell (Horton Park) joining Dann, Crabtree and Walkenhorst under the card.

    But in a strange scenario, 22-year-old Dann said he had played better on Saturday than on Sunday, despite his brilliant six under 66.

    “On Saturday I left my putts short. On Sunday I had just 24 putts, and that was the difference,” he said.

    “But I was really happy with my overall ball striking and the course was superb - the best condition I have ever seen it. The greens were soft, receptive and really true and because there was very little run the trees did not come into play.”

    Teeing off on Sunday Dann was two behind the four overnight leaders, but turned at two under then birdied the first four holes on the back nine. His only blemish coming home was a bogey at 15 after missing the green to the left with a wedge.

    Dann, whose goal is to play in as many professional tournaments as possible during the next 18 months, has taken his national amateur ranking from 130 to 25 since October.

    Sean McGill, a Headland member playing off five, had his two best rounds in ages when he parred the course on both days to win the overall best nett score (134) with another local, Peter Folker (nine) second on 137. McGill also won the B grade gross with 144, while Kane Jongeling (North Lakes) won C grade with 169. 

    A grade nett was won by Scott Walker (Headland) with 140, B grade also by McGill and C grade by Scott Mayes (Mt Coolum) 140. The junior champion is Chris Jimenez of Royal Queensland while Headland’s club captain, Ian Moore, took out the senior title. 

    Story: Tony Durkin. Photo: Jason Dougherty / Sunshine Coast Daily

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    Next generation right now
    If this were football, there’d be dozens of scouts lining the fairways.

    The Australian Junior Golf Championships start in Adelaide on Wednesday – and with the gap constantly narrowing between our emerging youngsters and their elite open-age counterparts, it’s no surprise that many of the combatants are already well established in senior ranks.

    There’s no clearer example of that than defending boys’ champion Ryan Ruffels, the Victorian prodigy who at 16, remarkably has this and one more year of eligibility at this level.

    Ruffels, ranked 15thin the world senior amateur rankings, scooped the pool at Heritage last year and is eager to defend at Kooyonga from Wednesday.

    But Ruffels won’t have things all his own way with a talented field gunning for him.

    Among the leading contenders are Perth’s Minwoo Lee, last year’s runner-up Blake Windred, from Sydney, and Queenslander Douglas Klein.

    Emerging Cameron John showed his wares when he led the recent Riversdale Cup, while his Victorian teammate Josh Hetherington is making his first appearance for his new state having moved south from Darwin to further his golf.

    Lee, 16, had a taste of international golf in Argentina late last year as part of a touring Australian team.

    And he can’t wait to put the lessons to good use in the chase to topple Ruffels.

    “I’m totally up for it,” Lee enthused.

    “It’ll be really good to play alongside Ryan again and show what I have.

    “The time in Argentina was great … it was great to represent Australia (and) I really learnt a lot about my game.

    “It’s a great field, so it will be good to test what I’ve learnt against everyone.”

    The girls’ title will be contested at Tea Tree Gully with an equally gifted field.

    Newly promoted Golf Australia national squad member Becky Kay, of the Gold Coast, will be a nominal favourite after a stellar summer.

    But in Victoria’s defending champ Kono Matsumoto, Sydneysider Doey Choi, and fellow Queenslander Karis Davidson, the 2014 Australian Amateur runner-up, Kay won’t have it easy, either.

    Throw in some international visitors including New Zealand’s Astor Trophy representative Alanna Campbell returning to South Australia, and it’s clearly a hot field.

    The pathway from the national junior titles to golf stardom is well trodden with past winners including Adam Scott, Jason Day, Wendy Doolan and Jan Stephenson.

    But, as Ruffels knows all too well, the gap is shrinking.

    “Obviously there’s a step up to pro tournaments, but you realise that if you can avoid being star-struck that the difference between the levels isn’t as big as you think,” he said.

    The tournaments are both 72-hole strokeplay with 18 on Wednesday and Thursday followed by 36 on Friday with the winners earning berths in the respective Australian Opens.

    The Junior Interstate Teams Championship will be held the following week, also in South Australia.

    Story: Golf Australia // Mark Hayes
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    Queensland Golf Industry Awards winners announced

    The Queensland golf industry capped off a stellar year last night at the 2014 QGI Awards on the Gold Coast.

    The evening recognised the achievements of those from the Queensland Division of the PGA of Australia, Golf Managers Association Queensland (GMAQ), Golf Queensland as well as the Golf Course Superintendents Association of Queensland (GCSAQ).

    With 25 awards presented and over 450 attendees, it was a strong representation of the positive direction of the Queensland golf industry.

    Golf Queensland presented five awards, including Headland Golf Club's Laurel Opray for Club Super Volunteer of the Year, Doug Klein for Junior Male Amateur Golfer of the Year, Taylor Macdonald for Male Amateur Golfer of the Year and Karis Davidson for both Junior Female Amateur Golfer of the and Female Amateur Golfer of the Year.

    Other notable winners include Chris Gibson winning the coveted PGA Teaching Professional of the Year and Dave Delahunty from Emerald Golf Club winning Club Professional of the Year. Redcliffe Golf Club won GMAQ Club of the Year. Keperra Country Golf Club's Gavin Lawrence took home the GMAQ Manager of the Year, while Victoria Park Golf Complex picked up the Junior Program of the Year Award.

    Winners Background:

    Laurel Opray - Club Super Volunteer of the Year
    Laurel Opray has volunteered an enormous amount of her time and energy into instigating an introductory ladies program at Headland Golf Club over the past two years.

    Laurel has over 60 ladies on her database, with 24 of these ladies progressing into club membership at Headland Golf Club.

    The financial gain of Laurel’s program to Headland Golf Club has been very significant and in late 2014, Laurel secured a $9,000 grant from the State Government’s “Get Going” funding program. With this grant, Laurel has been able to advertise extensively and purchase golf equipment to be used during the clinics.

    Doug Klein - Junior Male Amateur Golfer of the Year
    Doug Klein had a fantastic year, finishing as the winner of the Bill Kennedy Junior Averages Trophy.

    Doug had a number of top 10 finishes throughout the year including runner-up at the Gary Player Classic, 3rd placings at the Greg Norman Junior Masters, Queensland Boys Amateur, Aaron Baddeley International and South Australian Junior Masters, as well as 5th at the South Australian Junior Amateur.

    Karis Davidson - Junior Female Amateur Golfer of the Year
    Karis Davidson excelled in both junior and open company, consistently achieving top results at just 16-years-old and finishing as the second ranked player on the Australian Girls Ranking System. As a result of her dedication to the game, Karis won the Greg Norman Junior Masters and the Queensland Girls’ Amateur and finished 3rd in the Katherine Kirk Classic.

    Another highlight was her runner-up finish at the Australian Junior Championships. She was also a strong member of the Queensland Girls Junior Team, helping the State to be crowned champions in the Australian Girls’ Interstate Team Matches.

    Taylor Macdonald - Male Amateur Golfer of the Year
    This is the second successive year that Taylor Macdonald has won this award after an exceptional 2014, consistently finishing with top results. Taylor represented Australia at a number of events including the Asia Pacific Amateur, Asia Pacific Bonnallack Trophy and US Amateur. In February he finished as Leading Amateur at the Queensland PGA Championships.

    He is current Australian Men’s Foursomes champion, teaming up with Aaron Wilkin to win for the second straight year. Taylor won the Federal Amateur and finished as runner up at the Keperra Bowl. He also had a number of top ten finishes throughout the year including the Riversdale Cup, Lake Macquarie Amateur and Australian Master of the Amateurs.

    Taylor is a member of the Queensland Academy of Sport Program and the Queensland Men’s State Team.

    Karis Davidson - Female Amateur Golfer of the Year
    Karis Davidson enjoyed a very successful 2014, winning tournaments including the Queensland Girls’ Amateur as well as the Sunshine Coast Ladies Open.

    Karis also had a number of top 10 results including an impressive runner-up finish at the Australian Amateur Championships, 3rd in the South Pacific Ladies Open and 5th in the Dunes Medal. Another highlight was competing in the St Rule Trophy at St Andrews where she finished 3rd in the under 18 competition and 10th overall. Karis was a member of the Queensland Women’s State Team. 

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    2015 Australian Open dates confirmed

    The 2015 Emirates Australian Open will be played from November 26-29.

    Golf Australia chief executive officer Stephen Pitt confirmed the date today, saying it was the perfect time to again showcase record-setting host, The Australian Golf Club.

    “We’re really excited to be heading back to a club that will host our national championship for an unprecedented 19th time,” Pitt said.

    “It’s the same week on the golf calendar as last year which was a resounding success and a great time of the year to bring a world-class field to Sydney.”

    Pitt said The Australian’s redesigned course had been “superbly prepared and well received by both players and fans” in 2014 as American Jordan Spieth lifted the Stonehaven Cup with one of the storied event’s greatest rounds.

    “The overwhelming feedback we’ve had from players and sponsors is that they’ll be delighted to go back in 2015, so we’re thrilled to be able to make that happen,” Pitt said.

    The Emirates Australian Open is co-sanctioned by the PGA Tour of Australasia, a member of the International Federation of PGA Tours, and the OneAsia Tour. The flagship tournament on the PGA Tour of Australasia, the Emirates Australian Open winner will receive a minimum of 32 Official World Golf Rankings points.

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    2015 Qld Men's and Women's Foursomes Championships
    Ben Stieler (Brookwater) and Matt Pitty (Laidley) have stormed to victory in the 2015 Queensland Men's Foursomes Championships at sunny Wynnum Golf Club, with a final round of 69 and a 36 hole total of 139. 

    Sitting one shot adrift of first round leaders and eventual runners-up Charles Pilon (Hills) and Steven Cox (North Lakes), Stieler and Pitty finished with three birdies in their final four holes to emerge 3-shot victors.

    The Women's Foursomes Championship was won in dominant fashion, with Kate Law (Maryborough) and Amy Walsh (Palmer Colonial) streeting the field to win by 12 shots on a 36 hole total of 149. An opening round of 71 set up a 7-shot buffer which was only extended in the afternoon, highlighted by 10 birdies for the day.

    Law and Walsh were excited to have their names on a trophy that has also been won by Karrie Webb.

    Sanctuary Cove members Isabelle and Eloise Taylor played consistently over 36 holes to finish runners-up on a total of 161.

    Wynnum Golf Club was presented in great condition with players commenting on the great work done by the grounds staff.

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    Queensland Men's and Women's Foursomes tees off this weekend
    The Queensland Men’s and Women’s Foursomes Championships is on this Sunday at Wynnum Golf Club, with a large field of over 170 players teeing off.

    The Men’s Championship has attracted a high quality field with many pairings under the handicap of three.

    Teams to watch include former professional tennis players and brothers Scott and Mark Draper, who will team up to contest the championship. Chris Fraser and Adam Gemmell will be looking to go one better on Sunday, after finishing as runners-up last year.  

    Queensland Boys Team member’s 16-year-old Charles Pilon and 17-year-old Steven Cox are also in with a good chance.

    The Women’s Championship is to be the largest field size since 2009, with 27 teams registered.

    A number of the Queensland Girls’ and Women’s State Team members will be competing, with Kirsty Hodgkins teaming up with Lisa Edgar and Amy Walsh partnering with Kate Law.

    Other women’s teams to watch include defending champions Madeline Trew and Sheridan Gorton, as well as 2015 Indigenous Championship winner Kimberley Crawley with partner Heidi Falconer. 

    The Queensland Men’s and Women’s Foursomes Championships will be held on Sunday 29 March at Wynnum Golf Club in a 36-hole Foursomes Stroke Play format.  Round one commences at 7am and round two at 12pm.