Date: March 21, 2016
Author: Mark Hayes

Aussies shine, but Europe too good

It wasn’t to be for the Asia-Pacific men’s team at the Bonallack Trophy in Portugal, but it was through no fault of the Aussie contingent.

The European team was simply too strong for the visitors in the team matchplay format, winning 21.5-10.5 to keep the title they’ve held since 2006.

But both Golf Australia national squad members were impressive throughout, and that continued with both Zach Murray and Brett Coletta winning singles matches on the final day at Vidago Palace Golf Course, north-east of Porto.

Murray was superb in taking care of Scotland’s Jack McDonald 4&3, while fellow Victoria Coletta fought hard to beat England’s Bradley Moore 1-up.

But they were two of only four points the Asia-Pacific team won of the final 12 singles matches, with Europe’s depth just too much.

“We knew we were up against it in the singles and needed to make a fast start, which we did thanks to Brett and Zach,” Asia-Pacific team captain Matt Cutler said.

“Unfortunately we struggled in the middle matches and only Takumi Kanaya and Gregory Foo notched wins other than the Aussies.

“Those four players were our standouts for the week, but I think the whole team will have benefited from a great experience.”

Murray and Coletta lost both opening-day matches 1-down, but impressed after that in taking 1.5 points of a possible two on day two.

The final result could have easily been much closer with 11 matches going down the last hole and Asia-Pacific winning only three of them through the week.