Date: May 20, 2011
Author:

Boys tied at top, Lee builds lead in Perth

Three exciting rounds of 69 from three of the best juniors in Australia have continued a three-way tie in the boy&aposs field going into the final round of the 2011 Handa Junior Masters. As Perth turned on perfect conditions for the third Round of the Handa Junior Masters hosted by The Vines Resort and Country Club, the leading boys teed off neck a neck on 6 under par. Jake Higginbottom of NSW, who led the field after the opening round,showed his determination with a birdie at the first before a damaging double bogey on the second and another bogey on the par five 3rd. Higginbottom quickly mustered will power and determination resurrecting his front nine with a timely eagle on the par five 6th hole and another birdie on the 9th to turn one under the card. Also sitting at 6 under par at the start of the day, WA favourite Oliver Goss got off to a strong start with a birdie on the 3rd creating a break in the score line with Higginbottom before an unfortunate bogey on the par five 6th brought him back to even par for the day. A quick birdie on the 8th saw Higginbottom and Goss both turn at 7 under par. Australian Boys Amateur Champion Cameron Smith of QLD, who also started the day tied with Higginbottom and Goss, had a mixed start to his round carding four bogey s and three birdies to turn at 1 over for the day. Goss kept the pressure on the group on the back 9 with a birdie on 10 pushing him out to 8 under par while Higginbottom bogied to go back to 6 joining Smith who birdied to get back to even par for the day. Higginbottom rallied once again with birdies on the 13th and 18th to finish 3 under for the day, 9 under for the tournament. Goss showed solid form on the back 9 with consecutive pars before a birdie on the par four 17th tied him up with Higginbottom. Smith who struggled on the front 9 demonstrated why he is dominatingjunior golf in Australia with birdies on 10 and 11 before an impressive eagle on the par five 18th finished his round at 3 under par, tied with Higginbottom and Goss on 9 under total. With weather conditions set to get wet in Perth on Friday, it s any mans trophy heading in to the final round. In the girls field, tees set back and tricky pin placements saw pressure on the field with tournament leader Minjee Lee of WA struggling to recreate her opening round scores. Lee opened her third round with nine consecutive pars before a bogey on 10 pushed her to one over for the day. She recovered nicely with a birdie on the par four 12th before a disappointing doubleinterrupted her round at the 14th. Lee finished out her round with a birdie on 18 carding 1 over 73 for the day. Whilst she was disappointed with her round, she remains confident going into the final day holding an 8 shotlead over next best placed Anna Lim of Korea who had a difficult day with afinal score of 4 over 76. Victoria s Su Hyun Oh showed consistent form with a round of even par 72 while the best round of the day in the girls field went to Annie Choi of Korea who shot 2 under 70.